The Crown: Princess Margaret’s aide reveals why Helena Bonham-Carter is ‘perfect fit’

0

THE CROWN will air its new series later this month with esteemed actor Helena Bonham-Carter playing Princess Margaret – and an old friend of the royal declared she was “perfectly cast”, in a recently released autobiography.

Lady Anne Glenconner was childhood friends with Margaret and her sister the Queen, back when she was known as Princess Elizabeth. She was the Queen’s Maid of Honour during her Coronation in 1953, and in later life, became Margaret’s lady-in-waiting up until her death in 2002. Margaret was reportedly a “wonderful friend” to the aristocratic Lady Glenconner and they supported each other through difficult marriages and personal trauma.

Lady Glenconner’s 2019 autobiography, ‘Lady in Waiting: My Extraordinary Life in the Shadow of the Crown’, revealed how she thinks Mrs Bonham-Carter will make the “perfect” Margaret in series 3 of the popular Netflix series.

The aristocrat explained how she received a call from Ms Bonham-Carter at the beginning of 2019.

She said: “It’s not every day a Hollywood film star rings me up, although I had been expecting her call.”

As Lady Glenconner will be portrayed by Nancy Carroll in the third series and Mrs Bonham Carter will play Princess Margaret, she agreed to meet them both so they could get a better understanding of both Margaret and herself.

In her autobiography she writes: “As Helena walked through the door, I noticed a resemblance between her and Princess Margaret: she is just the right height and figure, and although her eyes aren’t blue, there is a similar glint of mischievous intelligence her gaze.”

Margaret was known for her small stature and charm. She was also a fashion icon in her youth and renowned for her looks.

Ms Bonham-Carter apparently wanted to “do Margaret justice” and asked all about the royal’s mannerisms.

Lady Glenconner said: “When she asked how the Princess had smoked, I described it as rather like a Chinese tea ceremony: from taking her long cigarette holder out of her bag and carefully putting the cigarette in, to always lighting it herself with one of her beautiful lighters.”

She reportedly “hated it when others offered to light it for her” and would fend off any man offering a light with a “small but definite gesture with her hand”.

The former lady-in-waiting also observed “Helena moved her hand in the tiniest of reflexes, as if to test the movement I’d just described”.

They discussed Margaret’s quick wit too, especially “how she always saw the humorous side of things, not one to dwell, her attitude positive and matter-of-fact”.

Lady Glenconner added: “As we talked, the description felt so vivid, it was as though Princess Margaret was in the room with us.”

Ms Bonham-Carter is also a cousin of Lady Glenconner’s late husband Colin Tennant, and apparently her father was of great help when one of the lady-in-waiting’s children was in an accident in the Eighties.

Lady Glenconner said: “We talked for three hours, and when she left I felt certain that she was perfectly cast for the role.”

Ms Bonham-Carter even wrote to the aristocrat after their meeting and expressed “the hope that Princess Margaret would be as good a friend to her as she was to me”.

She said: “I felt very touched by this and the thought of Princess Margaret and I being reunited on screen was something I looked forward to.”

After 30 years as Margaret’s aide, Lady Glenconner reflected on “all the time we had found ourselves in hysterics” following her conversation with Ms Bonham-Carter and wrote her book in the memory of the royal.

Margaret died in 2002 after a series of illnesses.

Series 3 of The Crown comes out on November 17, and will cover a period between 1964 and 1977.

Share.

About Author

Leave A Reply