The Crown Star Emma Corrin Reveals The Detailed Process Behind Her Transformation Into Princess Diana
After three seasons of royal shenanigans, the upcoming season of The Crown finally approaches one of the Royal Family’s most tumultuous periods — the era of Princess Diana. Newcomer Emma Corrin will play the late royal in the Netflix original’s fourth season, and a new interview reveals that transforming into the People’s Princess was no small task.
Corrin opened up about her preparation for the major role in conversation with British Vogue. As Diana remains one of the most beloved royals in history more than 20 years after her tragic death, telling her story with grace and accuracy would definitely require an extensive amount of research. When Corrin learned that she would be portraying the late Princess of Wales in the fourth season The Crown, she got straight to work.
The actress, who has always admired Diana, began a deep study of the royal’s life to channel her energy for the part. In addition to poring over every detail of the 2017 documentary Diana: In Her Own Words, and meeting up with Diana’s private secretary Patrick Jephson, Corrin told Vogue that she met with movement coach Polly Bennett, who helped her capture Diana’s cat-like gestures and movement. She even was gifted the custom patterns for the princess’ iconic wedding dress from David and Elizabeth Emanuel, the couple who designed the garment in 1981.
"The Emanuels, who designed the original, gave us the patterns, and then it was made for me,” Corrin shared. “We were filming the scene when you first see her in the wedding dress — I think it was Lancaster House in London — and I had a team of about 10 people helping me put it on because it’s massive. I walked out, and everyone went completely silent. More than anything else I wear in the series...it’s [Diana].”
“I feel I’ve got to know Diana like you would a friend,” she continued. “I know that sounds really weird, but I get a great sense of companionship from her. I suppose, over time, you kind of start to patch together a sense of empathy and a sense of understanding. I love figuring people out.”
Corrin’s introduction to The Crown’s storyline marks the beginning of Prince Charles and Diana’s relationship as well as the start of the princess's stressful life under the rigid rules of The Firm. Diana famously struggled with the strict bureaucracy and protocol of the Royal Family, publicly speaking about her difficulties with her in-laws in different interviews. Season four will finally cover that strained relationship, with Corrin joining Josh Connor's Prince Charles and Olivia Colman's Queen Elizabeth II.
The more scandalous aspect of Charles and Diana's relationship — including their separation, divorce, and Diana's fatal car accident at the Pont de l'Alma tunnel — will play out in seasons five and six, in which Australian actress Elizabeth Debicki will take up the mantle as the late princess.
We'll finally be reunited with Princess Diana when season four of The Crown hits Netflix on November 15.