DIANA Features Naomi Watts As The Princess Who Yearned For Another
While the first teaser for Oliver Hirschbiegel's Diana sold the idea of Naomi Watts playing Diana, Princess of Wales, filled with images but no dialogue, the first full-length trailer endeavors to capture interest by leaning on the forbidden romance angle. And it's, well, about what you might expect.
That's the challenge for biographical portraits of famous people: the arc of Diana's too-short life is too well-known to contain much unexplored territory. To be fair, the film promises otherwise by concentrating on her final two years. A big benefit, too, is that Naomi Watts is a gifted actress, and her physical characteristics are close enough to Diana's, so that shouldn't be too distracting. And Naveen Andrews has also done good work, though it's hard to tell from this trailer how much chemistry he has with Watts, since most of the footage is the usual 'snapshots from a life' approach.
Here's the official synopsis:
Diana takes audiences into the private realm of one the world's most iconic and inescapably public women -- the Princess of Wales, Diana (two-time Oscar® nominee Naomi Watts) -- in the last two years of her meteoric life. On the occasion of the 16th anniversary of her sudden death, acclaimed director Oliver Hirschbiegel (the Oscar®-nominated Downfall) explores Diana's final rite of passage: a secret love affair with Pakistani heart surgeon Hasnat Khan (Naveen Andrews, Lost, The English Patient), the human complications of which reveal the Princess's climactic days in a compelling new light.
Hirschbiegel directs from a screenplay by award-winning playwright Stephen Jeffreys, inspired by the book Diana: Her Last Love by Kate Snell, which was in turn drawn from extensive interviews with close friends and confidantes. The result is a window into the tumultuous, change-filled period from 1995-1997, in the wake of Diana's shattering divorce from Prince Charles, and at the moment when she stood on the cusp of a different life, evolving into a global humanitarian, a master of maneuvering fame and becoming her own woman.
Hirschbiegel's Downfall featured a stirring performance by Bruno Ganz, so perhaps Watts will power this movie to the finish line.
Diana will open in the UK on September 20. EOne Entertainment acquired U.S. distribution rights during the Cannes Film Festival, and the impression given was that it would receive an Oscar-season U.S. release, but no date has yet been announced.