The Crown's Elizabeth Debicki slips into a colourful swimsuit

PICTURE EXCLUSIVE: The Crown’s Elizabeth Debicki slips into a colourful swimsuit to film Princess Diana’s Mediterranean cruise with Dodi Al Fayed – mere weeks before her death

  • The actress donned a colourful striped swimsuit to recreate her family holiday aboard the Yacht Titania, which is acting as a stand-in for Fayed’s famous liner Jonikal
  • The trip occurred just weeks before Princess Diana was tragically killed in a car accident in Paris in 1997
  • Elizabeth is set to make her debut as Princess Diana in the upcoming fifth season of The Crown, which is set for release on November 9
  • The programme has already courted controversy with producers slammed over its ‘malicious storylines,’ which will include Diana’s now-infamous 1995 interview on Panorama.

The Crown’s Elizabeth Debicki recreated one of Princess Diana’s final voyages on Saturday, as she filmed a glimpse of her lavish 1997 Mediterranean cruise with her sons and Dodi Al Fayed – mere weeks before her tragic death.

The actress slipped into a colourful striped swimsuit to film scenes aboard the Yacht Titania for the sixth season of the Netflix drama, with the boat acting as a stand-in for Fayed’s famous liner Jonikal, where the Princess sailed from South of France to Sardinia before she was killed in a car accident in Paris.

Elizabeth is set to make her debut as Princess Diana in the upcoming fifth season of The Crown, which is set for release on November 9, and the programme has already courted controversy with producers slammed over its ‘malicious storylines,’ which will include Diana’s now-infamous 1995 interview on Panorama.


Spitting image: The Crown’s Elizabeth Debicki (left) recreated one of Princess Diana’s final voyages on Saturday, as she filmed her Mediterranean cruise with her sons and Dodi Al Fayed (Diana is pictured right on the cruise in July 1997)

For the scenes, Elizabeth recreated one of Diana’s most eye-catching holiday looks, that consisted of a purple and green striped swimsuit and a matching sarong.

The actress was a dead ringer for the late royal while filming the scenes with Rufus Kampa, who is playing a young Prince William, and Will Powell who plays Prince Harry, on a replica of Fayed’s famous lavish liner.

Joining her were actors Khalid Abdalla, who plays Diana’s lover Dodi, and his tycoon father Mohammed Al-Fayed, with the pair appearing to exchange a playful moment during the filming. 


Coming soon: The actress slipped into a colourful striped swimsuit (left) to film scenes aboard the Yacht Titania for the sixth season of the Netflix drama (Diana is pictured right during her trip in 1997)

Sweet: For the scenes Elizabeth was spotted filming scenes with the two young male actors playing her sons



Bold: For the scenes, Elizabeth recreated one of Diana’s most eye-catching holiday looks, that consisted of a purple and green striped swimsuit and a matching sarong

Playful: Joining Elizabeth for the scenes were young actors Rufus Kampa, who is playing a young Prince William, and Will Powell who plays Prince Harry



Hard to miss! She slipped into a colourful green and purple striped holiday look as she recreated Diana’s sunny European getaway with her two sons

Beaming: For a majority of the scenes Elizabeth was in good spirits as she recreated the sunny family getaway

What a liner! Titania is set to act as a stand-in for Fayed’s yacht Jonikal during both the fifth and sixth seasons of The Crown

At one point, Elizabeth appeared visibly upset in between scenes, and had to be consoled by other members of the show’s crew before resuming work on the series.

Titania is set to act as a stand-in for Fayed’s yacht Jonikal during both the fifth and sixth seasons of The Crown, 

In May 2020, Omar’s father’s yacht which had hosted the royals and Dodi was sold for £171,000, with some observers telling The Sunday Express that the bid was surprisingly low, sparking fears that the memory of Diana was ‘fading’.


Former flame: During her European getaway, Diana famously was joined by her new flame Dodi Al Fayed (left), who was sadly killed alongside her during a Paris car crash in 1997 (Elizabeth is pictured right filming with Khalid Abdalla, who plays Dodi)

Is she OK? At one point, Elizabeth appeared visibly upset in between scenes, and had to be consoled by other members of the show’s crew before resuming work on the series

Tough time: She was comforted by members of the crew between scenes


Moving: Elizabeth appeared to be filming an emotional scene with Dodi and his tycoon father, with the pair comforting her while aboard the liner

Emotional: They appeared to be filming a tender exchange with Dodi sweetly comforting Diana



Bold: The actress is the spitting image for the late Princess, and will play the Royal in The Crown’s fifth and sixth seasons, documenting her final years from 1991 to 1997 

Like any other mother! For the scenes, Elizabeth showed Diana’s softer side as a doting mother to her two young sons

Royal author Margaret Holder, who penned Diana: The Caring Princess, a look at the Princess of Wales’ life published in 1999, said she felt it was: ‘a shame that this historic boat didn’t attract a higher bid as a remarkable souvenir of the last days of Diana’s life.’

The boat was used by Dodi as the venue for lavish parties in the South of France, mainly in St Tropez.

On Tuesday it was reported that Netflix bosses are ‘spooked’ by the outrage that some storylines from season five have caused – even before it has been broadcast next month.

What a liner! In May 2020, Omar’s father’s yacht which had hosted the royals and Dodi was sold for £171,000, with some observers telling The Sunday Express that the bid was surprisingly low, sparking fears that the memory of Diana was ‘fading’

Not so pricey now! Royal author Margaret Holder, who penned Diana: The Caring Princess, a look at the Princess of Wales’ life published in 1999, said she felt it was: ‘a shame that this historic boat didn’t attract a higher bid’

So grand! The boat was used by Dodi as the venue for lavish parties in the South of France, mainly in St Tropez

Time away! During the final months of her life, Diana sailed from the South of France to Sardinia before flying to Paris, where she took the car journey that ended her life (she is pictured during her yacht trip with Dodi in 1997)

Family time: For the scenes, Elizabeth was seen playing a ball game with her sons while they took a swim in the yacht’s swimming pool

Netflix, which spends £11.5 million per episode on the show, which is one of its biggest global hits, is about to launch series five.

It will cover the years from 1991 to 1997, and will include details of Diana’s Panorama interview in 1995.

King Charles, played by Dominic West, is the dominant figure in the drama. He is shown lobbying Prime Minister John Major in a bizarre attempt to force his mother’s abdication.

It also depicts Charles bitterly arguing with Diana as their divorce looms, and romancing Camilla, now Queen Consort, including a dramatisation of the notorious ‘tampongate’ phone call.

A production source said that media outrage over inaccuracies – and the lack of sensitivity in airing the series so close to the death of the Queen – is ‘spooking’ the broadcaster.

The source said: ‘The show has never been about sensationalism but it has also always been a drama. For the first years it seemed that everyone was happy to tolerate it.’

The Crown, created and written by Peter Morgan, has been a hit for Netflix since it was first released in 2016.

But the source said Morgan had become increasingly ‘uncomfortable’ as the series of The Crown edged closer to the present day.

They said: ‘The truth is that it was easier to write the earlier series because, firstly, there is a wealth of historical documentation, plus a consensus over more of what happened, and you can be more broad brush dramatically and people don’t find it hurtful.

‘Peter is always trying to get to the truth. There is always reams and reams of research.

‘However, people are more loose-lipped about Princess Margaret 50 years ago than John Major in 1991.

‘Peter is very aware of all of it and it is a struggle. He insisted on announcing that series five would be the last, even though Netflix didn’t want to announce it. It didn’t want to kill the golden goose.

‘Then, a few months, later he had changed his mind and he said that he was writing series six. But this will be it. He won’t go any further towards the present day. It’s already uncomfortable enough.’

The source added: ‘He is quite traumatised by the criticism. He has not done anything to be sensational. The show would be a different show if he sought the sensational.

‘He has not sought to trash the reputation of the Royal Family – I mean, he accepted a CBE. I think we can all accept that’s not going to turn into a knighthood.’

It can be revealed that the scripts of series five were rewritten last year in the wake of revelations about Martin Bashir and how he manipulated Diana into giving the interview via a dirty tricks campaign.

In the original script, actress Elizabeth Debicki – who plays the late princess – would have been seen giving the interview and speaking the words that Diana said.

But all that was taken out after revelations about Bashir’s deceit, exposed in an inquiry led by Lord Dyson published in May last year.

Instead, Bashir is seen convincing her to talk, but the interview itself isn’t shown.

However, she is seen cooperating with Andrew Morton on the Diana: Her True Story book and seen briefing tabloid journalists. She’s also seen bombarding lover Hasnat Khan with telephone calls.

Makers Left Bank Pictures are now filming series six and will not be showing the car crash which killed Diana, although she will be seen at the Ritz with Dodi.

Source: Read Full Article