The series’ fifth season hits Netflix next month, and will show the dissolution of the marriage of Charles and Diana, now played by Elizabeth Debicki, but filming is already underway for the sixth and final season, which will cover her death in a car crash in a Paris tunnel at the age of 36.
Debicki will shoot the scenes over the next two weeks, reports Variety, quoting sources that stressed the importance of sensitivity and “getting it right.” According to their reporting, the show will depict the events leading up to the crash and the aftermath, but not the crash itself, similar to how a previous season showed the events leading up to and following Diana’s wedding but not the ceremony itself.
Diana and her boyfriend, Dodi Al-Fayed, along with their driver, were all killed in 1997 when their car, speeding to evade the paparazzi, crashed into the wall of the Pont de l’Alma tunnel. Bodyguard Trevor Rees-Jones was the sole survivor. The photographers who pursued their vehicle into the tunnel then took pictures of the wreckage, which has been a source of controversy ever since; though pictures of the crashed car are available, pictures of the victims have never been publicly displayed.
Since The Crown is about real people, many of whom are still living, the series has tended to cut anything super salacious, like unnecessary sex scenes. Depicting the actual death of Diana would not only be redundant, story wise (the audience would gain no new insight from seeing that a car crash can kill a person), but likely inspire backlash given the subject matter. Which is all to say, this is how we expected they’d shoot (around) it.
Originally published in Glamour.com