One of the most highly anticipated titles world premiering in Venice this week is Pablo Larraín’s Spencer, starring Kristen Stewart as Princess Diana. I’ve not heard any feedback about the film from screenings so far but there’s been speculation for months that, on the strength of Pablo’s previous work, and the subject, this performance could result in Kristen’s first Oscar nomination.
So here she is, with red hair, a bit longer I think than we’ve seen it in a while, arriving in Venice with Dylan Meyer. Presumably, then, Dylan will join Kristen on the carpet at the gala to kick off a possible award season run. Kristen would not be unaware about the scrutiny this film will be under. Princess Diana was the most intriguing woman in the world, and this film is coming at a time when there’s been renewed fascination into her marriage, and how the royal family treated her. So it would have been a thing no matter who played her. But Kristen is super famous in her own right. And even though there have been other projects about Diana recently, the fact that this movie is getting the festival treatment, presented to us right away as a prestige project with Oscar potential, the heat is expected. Kristen would have expected it – before she agreed to the role and certainly now. Not that she would have allowed it to affect her performance, obviously, but she’s experienced enough to know that there’s so much more to the work than just what happens on set.
So I’m excited about how she approaches this promotional push. And, of course, the fashion choices she’ll be making. Will her red carpet look reflect the person she’s playing in this film? Or will she separate it from her performance?
While Kristen could be looking at her first Oscar-nominated performance, Maggie Gyllenhaal is in Venice with her directorial debut, The Lost Daughter, adapted from Elena Ferrante’s novella. Maggie wrote the screenplay and secured the rights after she wrote to Ferrante for her blessing. This is a story about motherhood, about what you’re not prepared for as a mother, and all the complicated feelings and expectations on mothers that no one wants to talk about.
So it’s a big deal for Maggie, and on top of that, the film was shot last year, one of the first greenlit productions during the pandemic. This, then, is a special experience for her – and she’s in Venice with husband Peter Sarsgaard who also has a role in the film. Seems like it’s a family event too because Jake Gyllenhaal is also in Venice. While he may have his own projects to promote, I can’t imagine that he won’t be at Maggie’s premiere to support his big sister.
Jake posted from Venice on Instagram which delighted the nerds:
I wasn’t as interested in Mysterio as I was in his hair. Like Kristen, it’s currently longer now than it’s been in a while, I think? And it’s giving me Prince of Persia vibes. Jake went out for dinner last night with Rami Malek.