Do you have Northamptonshire home footage of Princess Diana for new archive documentary?

An award-winning film team is looking for home movies featuring Diana, the Princess of Wales

Wednesday, 3rd March 2021, 12:39 pm

The award-winning team behind a new film about Princess Diana is looking for movie footage from her home county as part of a feature documentary to be released in cinemas next year.

Produced by double Oscar-winning Simon Chinn and Academy Award nominee Ed Perkins, it will be the first ever cinema release documentary to be made about the princess who grew up on the Althorp Estate near Great Brington.

The film will be made exclusively from archive footage and photographs and will have no original interviews or commentary instead focusing on telling Diana’s story.

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Princess Diana in Wellingborough at a visit to Saxby's

Using videos shot by members of the public, as well as professionals, the story of her impact on Britain and globally will be told using contemporaneous material - as if it were unfolding in the present.

Ed Perkins, director of Diana, said: "Northamptonshire is an important location in Diana’s story, and we would therefore be grateful for an opportunity to be able to see any footage that local residents might have filmed of the Princess of Wales in order to be able to include the area and its strong connection to Diana in our film.

"Regardless of the length and quality of the footage we still want to hear from you because home movies can often provide a fresh perspective that feels raw and unmediated in comparison to news footage.

"Sometimes just a glance can convey an emotion or an idea that cannot be depicted through words, and so we are excited to see the authentic moments that the public have captured on their cameras over the years."

Princess Diana in Towcester

Production company Lightbox is making the landmark theatrical feature documentary on Diana, which will be released in cinemas in the summer of 2022 before it is launched on television and streaming services around the world.

They are keen to find any footage related to Diana or the events related to her life, such as the wedding day celebrations or her funeral, as well as her childhood and Althorp.

Simon Chinn, producer of Diana and co-founder of Lightbox, said: "Home to Diana’s ancestral residence, as well as her resting place, we very much want to hear from any residents of Northamptonshire who came into contact with Diana and managed to capture that moment on film.

"We have heard countless stories about Diana's extraordinary ability to connect with members of the public, and by using home movie footage, we hope to be able to depict that special relationship in a way that has never been achieved before.

Princess Diana at the Victoria Centre in Wellingborough in 1984

"In addition, if anybody has footage of the wedding day celebrations on the July 29, 1981, such as the many street parties that took place, or if anyone might have filmed anything related to Diana's funeral in 1997, we would be grateful if they could get in touch, as this type of home movie footage will allow us to re-tell these two historic events through the eyes of the public."

Twenty-five years after her death Lightbox hopes to create a film that will be seen as one of the defining records of her life and the era she lived through.

Lucile Smith, assistant producer , said: "Told exclusively through archive material, the film will be a highly immersive narrative of Diana’s life, from her birth to her tragic death, which will be experienced by audiences as if the story were unfolding in the present.

"As much as we are interested in the particulars of Diana’s story, however, we are equally interested in the way she was influenced by the era she lived through, how she impacted those events herself and the public’s response to her.

Crowds at Weetabix thronged the streets in 1989

"As with all our films, this story will be told with the care and respect that the subject deserves.

"We want to pay tribute to Diana’s life, and create a profound and cinematic film that will feel fresh and relevant to a contemporary audience looking back on these events."

Anyone with any old VHS tapes, footage, images or audio of Diana should contact Lucile Smith by email [email protected] or go to the appeal website by clicking here.

1981 Royal Mail sorting office in Barrack Road Northampton
People came out the day of Diana's funeral and stood on the the M1 to pay their respects