Was Princess Diana Embarking on an Acting Career Prior to Her Tragic Death?

When Princess Diana died in 1997, it was the end of an era. The royal, who had become known as “the People’s Princess” for her uncanny ability to connect with almost anyone, and her intense connection to the public, had lived in a bubble the last few years, hounded by the media at every turn. Still, her death was shocking and made international headlines.

Princess Diana left behind two young sons, a large extended family, and a legacy that would never be forgotten. When she died, she also put an end to some very interesting plans that she had put into motions, plans that would have seen Princess Diana taking the lead in a captivating romantic film.

How did Princess Diana spend her days?

Princess Diana and Prince Charles
Princess Diana and Prince Charles | Terry Fincher/Princess Diana Archive/Getty Images

Princess Diana was from a noble family, the Spencers, and brought a considerable amount of money into her marriage to Prince Charles. Her net worth dramatically increased during her marriage, and she grew in fame and prestige during her time in the palace. Following her divorce from Prince Charles, Princess Diana didn’t want for anything. The divorce settlement was huge, and her net worth was around $21 million. In today’s numbers, that would be closer to $31.5 million.

As a free agent after the divorce, Princess Diana spent much of her time with her boys: Prince William and Prince Harry. She was also just starting to date again and had embarked on a whirlwind romance with Dodi Al Fayed, a film producer. According to some reports, Princess Diana and Al Fayed were considering getting engaged in the days just prior to her death. 

Sadly, the couple never made it down the aisle. They both died in a tragic car crash, and Princess Diana’s two boys were left without a mother. Still, Princess Diana had thought ahead and made a will that left them $30 million after her demise. Had the princess been able to work on a particular film project that she had been thinking of, that number could have been even higher.

Was Princess Diana considering an acting career?

Recently, iconic actor Kevin Costner sat down in a rare interview and confirmed what many fans have speculated for years: Princess Diana was looking to get into acting. He revealed that Sarah Ferguson had been instrumental in setting up the initial meeting between Costner and Princess Diana and that the film in question would have been a sequel to Costner’s hit film, The Bodyguard

Costner also stated that while Princess Diana was excited about the prospect of working with Costner on such a major Hollywood movie, she was nervous as well. Particularly, she had reservations about romantic scenes, worrying about how the royal family would view such a thing. Unfortunately, the movie never moved into pre-production, since in a twist of fate, Costner received the script for the planned film the day before Princess Diana was killed in the car crash.

Would people have enjoyed seeing Princess Diana in a movie?

Princess Diana was incredibly popular with people all over the world, so there’s little doubt that a move with her in the lead, opposite a dynamic star like Costner, would be a huge draw for members of the movie-going public. While the extent of her acting abilities is not known, her charm and natural ability to draw people in would definitely have worked to her advantage.

Whether or not the royal family would have approved is another matter entirely. Traditionally, they stay away from Hollywood events and the film industry, so they might not have looked favorably upon Princess Diana’s foray into acting. 

Sadly, the world will never know what could have become of Princess Diana’s starring turn, but her interest in acting is one more thing that she has in common with her daughter-in-law, Meghan Markle.