Queen Elizabeth II reincarnated through Princess Diana

HABARI DAILY I Kampala, Uganda I As Netflix’s acclaimed series “The Crown” reaches its zenith with the release of its sixth and final season, viewers are thrust into the heart of one of the most sensitive and pivotal moments in British history—the untimely death of Princess Diana. 

The brainchild of creator Peter Morgan, the award-winning yet often-criticized series unfolds in two parts, with the first four episodes available on the streaming platform since last week and the final six slated for release on December 14 2023.

The extensive 60-hour narrative, which commenced in 2016, meticulously traces Queen Elizabeth II’s journey from her 1947 marriage to Prince Philip to the early 2000s introduction of Kate Middleton, the current Princess of Wales. 

However, the spotlight of the final season is fixed firmly on the last weeks of Princess Diana’s life, delving into her tumultuous divorce from the now King Charles III and culminating in her tragic demise on August 31, 1997.

Described as a “seminal moment” that the series has been building towards since its inception, there is palpable anticipation regarding Peter Morgan’s perspective on the monarchy. Does he view it as an institution that has made significant mistakes and requires modernization, or as one that has successfully adapted since 1997?

The season vividly recreates Queen Elizabeth’s rare live televised address from Buckingham Palace on September 5, 1997, honoring Diana and addressing the widespread public grief. Imelda Staunton, who portrays the monarch in the final two seasons, has spoken about the “massive responsibility” she felt during the reenactment of this powerful address, stressing the need for accuracy and sensitivity given the emotional nature of the subject matter.

Elizabeth Debicki, embodying the role of Princess Diana in the final season, has shared the emotional toll of portraying the beloved figure. “Some days, coming to work was incredibly painful and sad,” she admitted, underscoring the responsibility of presenting the story with honesty.

The series has garnered attention and nervous anticipation from those close to royalty. While the royal family has remained silent on the show, early revelations about Lady Di’s portrayal as a ghost have already sparked accusations of disrespect. 

“The Crown” has weathered criticism in the past, particularly for its appeal to Netflix’s younger audience, who may be encountering these historical events for the first time.

In response to concerns, Netflix added a disclaimer last year, explicitly stating that the show is a work of fiction. Annie Sulzberger, the lead researcher for the series, acknowledged the sensitivity surrounding Diana’s portrayal in an interview with The New York Times. 

“People who lived through Diana’s death feel a sense of ownership over that history, a sense of participation, which can color their perception of it,” she observed. “With recent history, you’re constantly battling with people’s intimate and personal perspectives.”

As the final episodes unfold, “The Crown” continues to tread the delicate line between historical accuracy, storytelling, and the sensitivities surrounding the recent history of the British monarchy.

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