Martin Bashir's infamous Diana interview to be recreated in Netflix's The Crown

26 October 2021, 11:51

The infamous interview is reportedly set to be recreated in the Netflix drama
The infamous interview is reportedly set to be recreated in the Netflix drama. Picture: Alamy

By Daisy Stephens

The Crown will dramatise the infamous Martin Bashir interview with Princess Diana, according to reports, despite Prince William saying he never wanted to see the interview broadcast again.

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That interview, conducted by then-BBC journalist Bashir, made global headlines as the princess spoke openly about her marriage to the Prince of Wales, famously telling Bashir "there were three of us in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded".

Earlier this year, a report by Lord Dyson concluded that the interview was secured by dishonest journalistic practices, saying the BBC covered up "deceitful behaviour" used by Bashir to arrange the bombshell interview.

The report led to a call from the Duke of Cambridge for the interview to never be aired again.

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"The Crown's creators see the interview as the keystone moment in series five," said an insider, according to The Sun.

"To the writers, the stormy marriage between Charles and Di led up to her outpouring on Panorama, and the aftermath of that decision defined her final months.

"They are making a huge investment in that. The Crown has a track record of delving into areas of the Royal Family's history they'd rather be left alone."

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Lord Dyson's report concluded that Bashir was in "serious breach" of the BBC's producer guidelines when he faked bank statements and showed them to Diana's brother Earl Spencer to gain access to the princess for the interview.

Following the report, William and the Duke of Sussex both issued statements condemning the BBC's actions, with the Duke of Cambridge saying: "It brings indescribable sadness to know that the BBC's failures contributed significantly to her fear, paranoia and isolation that I remember from those final years with her."

Read more: BBC Diana probe 'to conclude Bashir used deceit to get bombshell interview'

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The BBC wrote to the royal family to apologise and Bashir also issued an apology, saying faking the documents was "a stupid thing do to do", and "an action I deeply regret".

However he maintained it had "no bearing whatsoever on the personal choice by Princess Diana to take part in the interview".

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The fifth series of the lavish royal drama, due to air in November 2022, will see Dominic West star as the Prince of Wales and Elizabeth Debicki as Diana.

The Wire star West takes over the role of Charles from Josh O'Connor, while The Night Manager actress Debicki will replace Emma Corrin.

Imelda Staunton will take over the role of the Queen from Olivia Colman, while Jonathan Pryce will replace Tobias Menzies as the Duke of Edinburgh and Lesley Manville will take on Princess Margaret, following in the footsteps of Helena Bonham Carter.

The Crown was due to end after the fifth series, but the show's creator and writer, Peter Morgan, later said it will be extended to include a sixth series.

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In 2020 it was reported that Harry and wife Meghan Markle had signed a deal with Netflix, reportedly worth 100 million dollars (£76 million), to produce a range of films and series for the streaming service.

Netflix has said it is not commenting.