Kristen Stewart as Diana

Fans of Kristen Stewart and Princess Diana were left stunned on Wednesday when the first image of the actress as the tragic royal in Spencer hit the Internet.

The Twilight star was cast as Lady Di in 2019, but filming on revered screenwriter Steven Knight's Spencer, which focuses on a Christmas weekend in the early 1990s when Diana decided her marriage to Prince Charles was over, has only just started, due to COVID-related delays - and no one expected the actress to look exactly like the princess.

Opening up about the daunting task of playing one of the world's most beloved women, Kristen says, "Spencer is a dive inside an emotional imagining of who Diana was at a pivotal turning point in her life. It is a physical assertion of the sum of her parts, which starts with her given name - Spencer. It is a harrowing effort for her to return to herself, as Diana strives to hold on to what the name Spencer means to her."

Stewart's portrayal comes after Emma Corrin appeared as Diana in The Crown.

Spencer, which will also feature Timothy Spall and Sally Hawkins, is scheduled to open in theatres later this year, ahead of the 25th anniversary of Diana's death in 2022.

The movie is among the first U.K. film productions to shoot on mainland Europe post-Brexit. The project is currently shooting in Germany.

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