On July 29, 1981, 750 million people gathered to watch the nuptials of Prince Charles and Diana Spencer. But come November 15, 2020, you can expect a few edits to the royal wedding for The Crown‘s fourth season. A new cover story with Town & Country confirms the widely-watched ceremony will not be recreated in its entirety.
“While the union was one of the most watched events of its time, it’s one major moment that’s not recreated in the upcoming fourth season of The Crown,” Town & Country reports. However, the big day still plays a role in the season, and Netflix already teased footage of its replica of Lady Di’s 25-foot wedding gown. In both the date announcement video and teaser trailer for The Crown season 4, Emma Corrin, who plays Diana, can be seen in a recreation of David and Elizabeth Emanuel’s dress. Last month, Corrin spoke to British Vogue about what it was like to wear a replica. “The Emanuels, who designed the original, gave us the patterns, and then it was made for me,” Corrin said of the gown. “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 so…It’s her.”
For those who stayed awake in the early hours to watch the 1981 celebration, it’s an unforgettable pop culture moment. “I must have just been transfixed by the news coverage and, of course, Diana’s superlatively poufy gown, which was tailor-made for maximum appeal to dramatic little girls,” Go Fug Yourself writer Jessica Morgan told T&C.
Her colleague Heather Cocks added, “My earliest memory of the wedding—and specifically the Dress—was being about six and poring over our Chuck & Di coffee table book. My dad also bought a wastebasket that had the engagement photo printed on it. It still sits in my mom’s guest bathroom.”
The couple’s wedding is also invoked in voiceover for The Crown‘s first trailer. Words actually read by the Archbishop of Canterbury at their nuptials can be heard:
Here is the stuff of which fairytales are made—a prince and princess on their wedding day. But fairytales usually end, at this point, with the simple phrase: ‘They lived happily ever after.’ As husband and wife live out their vows, loving and cherishing one another, sharing life’s splendors and miseries, achievements and setbacks, they will be transformed in the process. Our faith sees the wedding day not as the place of arrival but the place where the adventure really begins.
It’s a passage that, in some ways, predicts the pair’s divorce amid infidelity and the pressures of public life. Corrin has spoken about Diana’s journey from naive teenager to languishing, if legendary, figure. “You meet her and she’s…16 years old,” Corrin told Vanity Fair. “From episode 1 to 3, we see her dynamic before she goes into the palace—and how normal she was, living in her flat with friends…then she’s really transported overnight.”
See the transformation—and a peek at the royal wedding—when The Crown season 4 hits Netflix on November 15.
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