PICTURE EXCLUSIVE: The Crown’s Elizabeth Debicki and Khalid Abdalla seen on set together for the first time as Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed as they film alongside young Prince William and Harry stars
- It depicted a holiday in July 1997 when William and Harry joined Diana and Dodi in the South of France
- Just weeks after the trip took place Diana and Dodi were killed in a car crash in Paris
- Filming resumed after halting for a day when Buckingham Palace announced the death of Queen Elizabeth II
- The series also stopped filming on Monday to mark the day of the Queen’s funeral
- The last two series of The Crown will cover the Royal Family in the 1990s to 2003
The Crown’s Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed stars were seen on set together for the first time as they filmed in Mallorca on Thursday.
Elizabeth Debicki and Khalid Abdalla transformed into the star-crossed lovers as they joined Rufus Kampa, 16, who plays a young Prince William and Will Powell, who takes on the role of Prince Harry in the Netflix series.
The scenes indicated they were portraying a holiday taken by the group in July 1997 – just a month before Diana and Dodi’s tragic passing – when the princes famously joined the couple for a trip in the South of France aboard a superyacht owned by Dodi’s father Mohamed Al-Fayed.
Fantastic four: The Crown’s Elizabeth Debicki and Khalid Abdalla were seen on set together for the first time as Princess Diana and Dodi Fayed as they filmed alongside Prince William and Harry stars Rufus Kampa and Will Powell in Mallorca on Thursday
For the scenes, Elizabeth, 32, donned a pair of stylish striped trousers that she paired with a navy tank top and white boat shoes, while Khalid, 40, opted for a black and white shirt and cream slacks.
While he is not believed to feature in The Crown the half brother Dodi, Omar Fayed, previously spoke about his memories of holidaying with the Diana, her sons and Dodi.
Although he was just nine years old at the time of the trip, he recalled that spending time with Diana and her sons was ‘delightful’ and the period surrounding their relationship had ‘lovely family vibes’.
In an interview with Tatler last year, Omar said: ‘I met Princess Diana a few times and Princes William and Harry. They came to my dad’s house, too, and were super delightful.
‘There were so many stories that came out of that period, but for the people who were in it, it was lovely family vibes.’
Two’s company: Princess Diana and Dodi Al Fayed are pictured din Saint Tropez, France in August 1997
Stylish: For the scenes, Elizabeth, 32, donned a pair of stylish striped trousers that she paired with a navy tank top and white boat shoes, while Khalid, 40, opted for a black and white shirt and cream slacks
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’.
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.
Back in the day: The princes famously joined the couple for a trip in the South of France aboard a superyacht owned by Dodi’s father Mohamed Al-Fayed in July 1997
Meanwhile, The Crown recently resumed production on its sixth and final series after filming was paused for a single day following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
It was revealed that filming for The Crown been suspended for one day as a ‘mark of respect to the late monarch’, who passed away aged 96 on September 8 at Balmoral Castle.
Filming also did not take place on the day of the Queen’s funeral.
Back at it: Elizabeth slipped into a red shift dress earlier in the day as she filmed more scenes for the hit show
Hard at work: Elizabeth and Rufus smiled and chatted away as they portrayed the roles of Princess Diana and her eldest son William
Netflix had reportedly devised a plan, also named Operation London Bridge like the official funeral plan for the Queen, to outline what the production company for The Crown would do in the event of her passing.
One of the show’s creators Stephen Daldry said when the show first premiered in 2016 the cast would likely stop production, saying: ‘It would be a simple tribute and a mark of respect. She’s a global figure and it’s what we should do.’
Peter Morgan, writer of the drama, was quoted after news of the Queen’s death was confirmed as saying: ‘The Crown is a love letter to her and I’ve nothing to add for now, just silence and respect. I expect we will stop filming out of respect too.’
Pensive: Elizabeth has taken on the role of Princess Diana (right) for The Crown’s fifth series, which will depict her romance with Dodi following her divorce from Prince Charles
Iconic role: Khalid will take on the role of Princess Diana’s tragic boyfriend Dodi Fayed in series 5 of The Crown
Locations in Palma and Andratx are said to have been considered for the sixth series, which will cover the romance of Charles and Camilla and William’s university studies.
Part of season five of the popular series was shot on the Balearic island last year, with Sant Elm beach on the west coast and the Port of Soller among the locations where filming took place.
The last two series of The Crown will cover the Royal Family in the 1990s to 2003. The crew will be picking up the story where it left off in the fourth season.
The breakdown of Charles and Diana’s relationship will be a central part of the new series.
Younger days: Rufus was cast to play the Prince (right in 1997) at a different stage in his life, depicting his teenage years showing how he and the royal family coped with the death of Princess Diana
Child star: Will Powell takes on the role of Prince Harry in the Netflix series as his first major acting role
The fourth series of The Crown, which streamed in November last year, told the story of the early romance between Charles and Diana.
It was announced last year that Elizabeth would take over from Emma Corrin and play Diana for the fifth and sixth series, which will cover Diana’s death in 1997.
The actress said of her casting last year: ‘Princess Diana’s spirit, her words and her actions live in the hearts of so many.
‘It is my privilege and honour to be joining this masterful series, which has had me absolutely hooked from episode one.’
Pivotal moments from The Crown so far…
King Edward VIII abdicates the throne for love
Edward fell in love with Wallis Simpson, a married woman, and planned to marry her after his coronation when her divorce had come through.
However they were denied the opportunity to marry and due to divorce being forbidden for the Royals and decided to move to France together.
Edward later returned to England to face his family for the funeral of George VI following his death and went on to form a close bond with Prince Charles.
Bigger picture: King Edward VIII abdicates the throne for love
Princess Margaret is also denied her happy ending
Princess Margaret, who is painted as the Royal rebel throughout the first and second seasons, hoped to step outside tradition and marry divorcee Peter Townsend.
However growing public chatter over the illicit relationship begins to overshadow Elizabeth’s post coronation fame.
Margaret makes her intentions to marry Peter clear to Queen Elizabeth II and she asks her to wait until she is 25 to tie the knot with her love.
However when her 25th birthday does roll around the Queen has to go back on her word due to pressure from the Crown, and tells Margaret that she cannot grant her permission to marry Peter.
Devastated: Princess Margaret is denied her happy ending with Peter Townsend
Winston Churchill’s rise and fall
The first and second seasons depicted the Queen’s relationship with the Prime Minister of the time, Winston Churchill.
Following his successful leadership during the Second World War, Winston rises to power again for a second time during Elizabeth’s reign.
The Crown follows Winston’s journey as he adjusts to answering to a woman in power and his deteriorating health.
Royal marriage is rocked Elizabeth’s new role
The power struggle in the relationship is clear to see as Elizabeth’s role as the Queen takes priority over her marriage, while Prince Philip isn’t used to taking a backseat.
The Crown also hints at infidelity in their relationship as Elizabeth finds a picture of Russian ballerina Galina Ulanova among his possessions, before sending him off on a five-month tour on the Royal yacht.
The tension comes to a head during the premiere for season two when the Royal couple argue on board the HMY Britannia as they strive to find a resolution to their problems, due to divorce not being an option for a monarch.
Trouble in paradise: Royal marriage is rocked Elizabeth’s new role
Elizabeth’s journey to accepting the Crown
The start of the series shows a more wary and shy Elizabeth, compared to the formidable monarch she has grown into.
One of the key moments in the first series is her journey to accepting the Crown, after having to reconfigure all of the relationships in her life.
The series shows the Queen growing in confidence as she finds herself on a path of self-discovery.
The Queen visits Aberfan
Aberfan: After reflecting on her decision, she eventually visited alongside her husband and it is claimed her delayed response remains one of her greatest regrets
Episode three of the third season focuses on the Aberfan disaster which killed 144 people, including 116 childrne, after a colliery spoil tip collapsed over a school in a Welsh village.
The Queen did not immediately visit the disaster site, citing that she did not want to distract away from the tragedy with her presence.
However after reflecting on her decision, she eventually visited alongside her husband and it is claimed her delayed response remains one of her greatest regrets.
The Royal Family documentary
Inside the life: In a bid to give the public a better understanding of the Royal family they let a camera crew into their lives for 18 months
In a bid to give the public a better understanding of the Royal family they let a camera crew into their lives for 18 months.
The Crown depicts the whole thing as a disaster with the family reportedly banning the programme from ever being aired again.
However in actuality, the documentary was well-received and had sky high viewing figures.
Prince Charles valuable time in Wales
Touching: Prince Charles valuable time in Wales
After receiving backlash for the title ‘Prince of Wales’, despite not being a citizen or speaking the language, Prince Charles was sent to Aberystwyth University to learn the language.
Charles, who was 20 at the time, finished the trip with an elaborate investiture to pledge his allegiance to the Queen in Welsh.
However he asked to tweak the speech to add in his own voice, promising the Welsh residents that they wouldn’t be forgotten by England again.
Princess Margaret wows at the White House
She impressed! After being sent on a Royal tour of the U.S. in place of her sister, Margaret was invited to dinner at the White House by President Lyndon B. Johnson
After being sent on a Royal tour of the U.S. in place of her sister, Margaret was invited to dinner at the White House by President Lyndon B. Johnson.
The whole night appeared a huge success thanks to Margaret’s quick-wit and charm, with President Johnson seemingly lapping it up.
However across the pond Margaret’s success appeared to worry the Queen as she seemed concerned she was being outshone by her sibling.