Prince William’s pleas over Bashir interview ignored by The Crown

The Crown is right to depict Diana's BBC interview says expert

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Prince William’s hopes that his late mother’s notorious 1995 BBC interview will never be shown again have been dashed by Netflix, with the streaming platform set to feature Princess Diana’s encounter with Martin Bashir in next week’s release of The Crown, according to new reports. The upcoming series of the Netflix drama centred on the Royal Family will focus on the events of the 1990s, with Australian actress Elizabeth Debicki taking over the role of Princess Diana from Emma Corrin.

The plot will concentrate on the breakdown of the marriage of the then-Prince and Princess of Wales, as well as Diana’s infamous BBC interview with Martin Bashir ahead of her death in Paris in 1997.

The new Prince of Wales, 40, had expressed his opposition to the streaming service recreating the interview, which he said last year “contributed significantly to her fear, paranoia and isolation” in Princess Diana’s final years.

But the streaming giant will include two episodes which look at the build up to, and the events in the wake of, the 1995 interview, according to new reports.

The hour-long interview will be represented in the Netflix series for four minutes and 23 seconds, and will include the most recognisable sound bites from the interview, The Sun reported.

But some of the dialogue will be changed during the dramatisation, the publication added.

In the interview, Diana memorably commented “there were three of us in this marriage”, referring to then-Prince Charles and Camilla Parker Bowles, as the Queen Consort was known at the time.

Editor of Majesty Magazine, Ingrid Seward, said Prince William will be “furious” with the choice to go ahead with the depiction of the interview, adding: “This is his mother and her memory they are doing this to.

“It must be very frustrating as he can’t say any more because it will just give Netflix more publicity.

“They should have listened to him.”

In May 2021, an investigation led by Lord Dyson found that interviewer Martin Bashir used “deceitful behaviour” against Princess Diana’s brother, Earl Spencer, in a “serious breach” of BBC guidelines to obtain the interview with the then-Princess of Wales.

Following the verdict of the inquiry, Prince William said: “It is my firm view that this Panorama programme holds no legitimacy and should never be aired again.

“It effectively established a false narrative which, for over a quarter of a century, has been commercialised by the BBC and others.”

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He added: “The interview was a major contribution to making my parents’ relationship worse and has since hurt countless others.”

Prince Harry’s reaction went slightly further than the statement released by his elder brother, saying: “The ripple effect of a culture of exploitation and unethical practices ultimately took her life.

“To those who have taken some form of accountability, thank you for owning it. That is the first step towards justice and truth.”

Ms Seward added this week: “The interview has no credibility after the investigation. Everyone knows it has no legitimacy now.”

“Charles will think they can say whatever they want about him but leave Harry and William out of it. He won’t give a stuff about how he comes across but just don’t attack his sons this way.”

A statement from Netflix read: “Season five of The Crown will dramatise events surrounding the Panorama interview, given the pivotal part it played during the time period the series covers.

“It will reflect what we now know about how the interview was obtained and how Diana was treated. The interview is not recreated in full.”

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