25 years later: new documentary claims that Princess of Wales attempted to speak out on marriage breakdown earlier

Momentous Channel 4 documentary set to reveal all

Diana, Princess of Wales
(Image credit: Tim Graham Photo Library via Getty)

Everyone remembers the bravery of Diana, Princess of Wales as she gave her iconic Panorama interview back in 1995.

The princess famously declared that there were “three people” in her marriage. We now know she was referring to Camilla Parker-Bowles, Duchess of Cornwall and her honesty captivated the programmes' 22.8 million viewers.

But now 25 years later, an explosive Channel 4 documentary is suggests there’s more to it. Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview will focus on the run-up to the Princess of Wales’ interview with journalist Martin Bashir. It will also explore the suggestion that Diana attempted to reveal the issues in her marriage many months before her momentous BBC interview.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ow51XlSqrf8 It has been suggested by The Times that Sir Max Hastings, editor of The Daily Telegraph in 1995, is to be one of those interviewed in the documentary.

The claims he is reported to make are quite astonishing. These include his assertion that the late Princess of Wales was “terribly anxious” for her side of the story to be heard. He states that she had approached him a shocking three months before the Panorama interview was filmed.

Hastings reportedly decided against running anything, apparently citing the princess’ vulnerability and impressionability as his primary reasons. The princess also allegedly told the editor that her marriage had been “hell since day one”. Hastings also told the programme, “She said that all she cared about was William’s succession to the throne.’

Diana, Princess of Wales and Charles, Prince of Wales

Hastings says that Diana went on to say explicitly, “I don’t think Charles can do it”, with regards to her husband taking on the throne. He states that, “the outcome she wanted to see was for Charles to stand aside as heir to the throne and for William to occupy the throne.”

Sir Max reportedly told the Princess of Wales that he was “terribly flattered” that she had driven all the way down to meet him in Berkshire. However, he says he felt that his job was to try and help them keep a lid on the “worst of this”.

Max Hastings, editor

He also stated that her account in their almost two-hour long meeting made him feel “so desperately sorry for her”.

Diana married Charles, Prince of Wales in 1981 and together they became proud parents to Princes William and Harry. They later separated in 1992. Despite their separation, they continued to undertake royal duties together.

They reached a final divorce agreement in 1996, just 12 months before Diana was tragically killed in a car crash in Paris.

Now 25 years after the BBC interview that captured the nation's hearts, Channel 4 will reveal Diana like never before.

Diana: The Truth Behind The Interview will be broadcast on Channel 4 on Wednesday October 21 at 9pm.

Emma Shacklock
Emma Shacklock

Emma is a Senior Lifestyle Writer with five years experience working in digital publishing, ranging from book publishing to magazines. She currently looks after all things Lifestyle for Woman&Home, GoodToKnow and My Imperfect Life.

Before she joined Future Publishing, Emma graduated from the University of Warwick with a Bachelor of Arts degree in English and Comparative Literary Studies. After leaving education, she started out her publishing career in the world of books, working as a Publisher for an independent digital publisher specializing in back-list and debut commercial fiction novels. With a huge book list and a passion for bringing the best stories to the broadest audience possible, Emma filled her spare time with reading the latest best-sellers and catching up on hit adaptations.

In 2017 she joined TI Media as a fiction writing coordinator on Woman’s Weekly and Woman’s Weekly Fiction as part of the features team. From here, she used her love of books, working to bring short stories to our dedicated readers and began writing for the books pages of Woman, Woman’s Own and Woman&Home, as well as online features ranging from genre round-ups to travel pieces for womanandhome.com. 

After honing her skills, Emma branched out online in 2020 when Future gave her the opportunity to focus on digital-first. When she’s not writing about the next big lifestyle trend, she enjoys cooking, long walks and watching as many crime dramas as she can!