Uproar as Princess Di resurrected for cover story

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.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Arts and Entertainment
Gal Gadot as Wonder Woman

film
Arts and Entertainment
Pedro Pascal gives a weird look at the camera in the blooper reel

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Public vote: Art Everywhere poster in a bus shelter featuring John Hoyland
art
Arts and Entertainment
Peter Griffin holds forth in The Simpsons Family Guy crossover episode

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Judd Apatow’s make-it-up-as-you-go-along approach is ideal for comedies about stoners and slackers slouching towards adulthood
filmWith comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on
Arts and Entertainment
booksForget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
Arts and Entertainment
Off set: Bab El Hara
tvTV series are being filmed outside the country, but the influence of the regime is still being felt
Arts and Entertainment
Red Bastard: Where self-realisation is delivered through monstrous clowning and audience interaction
comedy
Arts and Entertainment
O'Shaughnessy pictured at the Unicorn Theatre in London
tvFiona O'Shaughnessy explains where she ends and her strange and wonderful character begins
Arts and Entertainment
The new characters were announced yesterday at San Diego Comic Con

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Rhino Doodle by Jim Carter (Downton Abbey)

TV
Arts and Entertainment
No Devotion's Geoff Rickly and Stuart Richardson
musicReview: No Devotion, O2 Academy Islington, London
Arts and Entertainment
Christian Grey cradles Ana in the Fifty Shades of Grey film

film
Arts and Entertainment
Comedian 'Weird Al' Yankovic

Is the comedy album making a comeback?

comedy
Arts and Entertainment
While many films were released, few managed to match the success of James Bond blockbuster 'Skyfall'
film
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Dornan as Christian Grey in the first-look Fifty Shades of Grey movie still

film
Arts and Entertainment
Sue Perkins and Mel Giedroyc, centre, are up for Best Female TV Comic for their presenting quips on The Great British Bake Off

TV
Arts and Entertainment
Martin Freeman as Lester Nygaard in the TV adaptation of 'Fargo'

TV
Arts and Entertainment
A scene from Shakespeare in Love at the Noel Coward Theatre
theatreReview: Shakespeare in Love has moments of sheer stage poetry mixed with effervescent fun
Arts and Entertainment
Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson stars in Hercules

film
Independent
Travel Shop
the manor
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on city breaks Find out more
santorini
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on chic beach resorts Find out more
sardina foodie
Up to 70% off luxury travel
on country retreats Find out more
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    The children were playing in the street with toy guns. The air strikes were tragically real

    The air strikes were tragically real

    The children were playing in the street with toy guns
    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite – The British, as others see us

    Britain as others see us

    Boozy, ignorant, intolerant, but very polite
    Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them altogether

    Countries that don’t survey their tigers risk losing them

    Jonathon Porritt sounds the alarm
    How did our legends really begin?

    How did our legends really begin?

    Applying the theory of evolution to the world's many mythologies
    Watch out: Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Lambrusco is back on the menu

    Naff Seventies corner-shop staple is this year's Aperol Spritz
    A new Russian revolution: Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc

    A new Russian revolution

    Cracks start to appear in Putin’s Kremlin power bloc
    Eugene de Kock: Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

    Apartheid’s sadistic killer that his country cannot forgive

    The debate rages in South Africa over whether Eugene de Kock should ever be released from jail
    Standing my ground: If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?

    Standing my ground

    If sitting is bad for your health, what happens when you stay on your feet for a whole month?
    Commonwealth Games 2014: Dai Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

    Greene prays for chance to rebuild after injury agony

    Welsh hurdler was World, European and Commonwealth champion, but then the injuries crept in
    Israel-Gaza conflict: Secret report helps Israelis to hide facts

    Patrick Cockburn: Secret report helps Israel to hide facts

    The slickness of Israel's spokesmen is rooted in directions set down by pollster Frank Luntz
    The man who dared to go on holiday

    The man who dared to go on holiday

    New York's mayor has taken a vacation - in a nation that has still to enforce paid leave, it caused quite a stir, reports Rupert Cornwell
    Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business, from Sarah Millican to Marcus Brigstocke

    Best comedians: How the professionals go about their funny business

    For all those wanting to know how stand-ups keep standing, here are some of the best moments
    The Guest List 2014: Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks

    The Guest List 2014

    Forget the Man Booker longlist, Literary Editor Katy Guest offers her alternative picks
    Jokes on Hollywood: 'With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on'

    Jokes on Hollywood

    With comedy film audiences shrinking, it’s time to move on