Kristen Stewart at Cannes 2018, by Georges Biard, licensed under CC BY-SA 4.0, cropped

Kristen Stewart will portray Princess Diana in Pablo Larrain’s hot virtual Cannes project Spencer, which FilmNation is introducing to international buyers.

Larraín, who turned his lens on another female global icon, Jackie Kennedy, in Venice 2016 premiere Jackie, and most recently directed Ema, will direct from a screenplay by Steven Knight, whose credits include Eastern Promises, Peaky Blinders and Locke..

The story will take place over three days at the Sandringham estate in the UK in the  late 1990s as Diana comes to realise her marriage into the Royal Family has failed and she needs to change her life.

Production is expected to start early next year.

CAA Media Finance arranged financing and represents US rights.

Larraín will produce Spencer alongside his brother and Fabula partner Juan de Dios Larraín, Jonas Dornbach and Janine Jackowski (both produced Toni Erdmann and A Fantastic Woman), and Paul Webster (Locke, Atonement).