“Diana,” the feature film about the late Princess of Wales’ secret love affair during the last years of her life is set to premiere with a grand Leicester Square gala in London on September 5, a day before the anniversary of her funeral, when the world watched as teenage Princes William and Harry walked behind their mother’s coffin.
Starring Oscar-nominated actress Naomi Watts in the title role, the movie tells the story of how Diana met and fell in love with Pakistani heart surgeon, Dr. Hasnat Khan, played by Naveen Andrews, known for his portrayal of Kip in the movie, “The English Patient.”
The Daily Mail reported on Tuesday that both actors are expected to attend the gala premiere.
‘I don’t look like her and I’m certainly not impersonating her. I’m hoping to catch the essence of her’, Watts told The Daily Mail.
The film, directed by Oscar-nominated Oliver Hirschbiegel, will go on general release in the UK on September 20.
Deadline Hollywood reported on May 23 that Entertainment One (eOne) bought the film’s U.S. distribution rights from Embankment Films and Ecosse Films, with a possible U.S. release during Oscar season, usually in November.
“We are thrilled to be bringing Diana home from Cannes,” Dylan Wiley, eOne U.S. VP Theatrical Marketing and Distribution told Deadline Hollywood.
“Diana will give audiences worldwide a chance to not only fall in love with the Princess all over again, but also discover a part of her life up until now kept out of the public eye. And only Naomi Watts could bring such a modern icon to life, through a truly beautiful and nuanced performance.”
Watts is reportedly “both ‘nervous and excited’ about portraying Diana.”
Diana, Princess of Wales, captured worldwide imagination from the moment she walked down the aisle during her fairytale wedding to Prince Charles in 1981. She brought important causes such as HIV/AIDS and landmine clearance to the international stage and is widely regarded as a fashion icon. The Prince and Princess of Wales were divorced in 1996.
Diana died after being involved in a tragic car accident in Paris on August 31, 1997 at the age of 36. The biopic also comes days after the 16th anniversary of her death. Her funeral on September 6, 1997 was watched by a worldwide audience, witnessing the grief of the sons she left behind.