Uproar as Princess Di resurrected for cover story
Wednesday 29 June 2011
A Newsweek cover photo marking Princess Diana's 50th birthday, reimagines her still-elegant but with crow's feet and an aging neckline, sparking a media uproar and outrage among her devoted fans.
Almost 14 years after her tragic death aged just 36 in a Paris car crash, Diana remains the best beloved British royal, forever fresh, youthful and vibrant in the memory of millions around the world.
But the Newsweek cover photo on stands this week imagines a noticeably older Diana strolling alongside Kate Middleton - the daughter-in-law she never met, who is now known as Princess Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge.
The computer-generated image is edited from a photo of Princess Catherine arriving at a wedding earlier this month with her younger sister Pippa.
She is wearing a cream-colored dress with brown piping from US designer Michael Kors, a matching brown Jimmy Choo purse slung over her shoulder.
Her perfectly coiffed frosted hair sports a beige hat at a jaunty angle, while a Bulgari bracelet and watch and earrings and ring by Van Cleef & Arpels complete the picture.
US media was almost unanimous in giving the retouched image a thumbs down, with several describing it as downright "creepy."
The Atlantic Monthly referred to the image as "Princess Diana's ghost." Some critics questioned its journalistic value, others, its tastefulness.
The Los Angeles Times, in the headline of its article on the Newsweek story, pondered whether it was "shocking, brilliant, or just plain cheap?"
Newsweek's editor Tina Brown - a friend of Diana who also penned a tell-all biography about the late princess - wrote inside the magazine that she saw the issue as a sort of tribute.
"Diana would have been 50 this month," she writes. "What would she have been like?"
Brown then seeks to answer her own question, saying the former Diana Spencer likely "would have gone the J. Crew and Galliano route a la Michelle Obama, always knowing how to mix the casual with the glam."
"There is no doubt she would have kept her chin taut with strategic Botox shots and her bare arms buff from the gym," said Brown, predicting her late friend would have made at least two more trips down the wedding aisle herself, probably "on both sides of the Atlantic."
"Her romantic taste would have moved to men of power over boys of play," Brown wrote about her friend, who was dating Egyptian Dodi Fayed when they were both killed in the 1997 Paris car crash, hounded by the paparazzi.
Brown imagined New York as Diana's ultimate home and said she would have made peace with "her reviled first husband" Prince Charles, who would have become "her best male friend."
Diana's eldest son Prince William, second-in-line to the British throne after Prince Charles, married Kate Middleton in April as millions around the world looked on, still captivated in part by the late princess's legacy.
Artists unveils new exhibition inspired by Hastings beachart
Arts & Ents blogs
- 1 Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Pro-Russian rebel 'admits to shooting down plane'
- 2 Louis van Gaal gets tough with Manchester United players, with Darren Fletcher and Luke Shaw berated in public and Phil Jones left looking bemused
- 3 Is Gideon Levy the most hated man in Israel or just the most heroic?
- 4 Peaches Geldof inquest: Tragic final moments of socialite's life reveal she lied to husband about failed heroin tests
- 5 Israel has discovered that it's no longer so easy to get away with murder in the age of social media
What are the worst 'Word Crimes'?
Hercules, review: Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson takes centre stage in preposterous film
Fight Club 2: Chuck Palahniuk sequel is a 'meta-fictional comment on the cultural response to the original'
Noel Fielding's 'Luxury Comedy': A land of the outright bizarre
Can Secret Cinema sell 80,000 'Back to the Future' tickets?
Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 crash: 'Nine Britons, 23 Americans and 80 children' feared dead after Boeing passenger jet is 'shot down' near Ukraine-Russia border
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Vladimir Putin is given 'one last chance' to end hostilities in Ukraine
The 'scroungers’ fight back: The welfare claimants battling to alter stereotypes
The truth about conspiracy theories is that some require considering
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Ukrainian military jet was flying close to passenger plane before it was shot down, says Russian officer
Malaysia Airlines MH17 crash: Massive rise in sale of British arms to Russia