Okay, Can Someone Please Tell Me the Truth About What Happened With Princess Diana’s Dresser in ‘Spencer’?

[There are spoilers ahead for the movie Spencer. If you haven’t seen it yet, please come back to this post at another time!]

Kristen Stewart’s new movie Spencer leaves a LOT to unpack. The biopic follows the late Princess Diana over Christmas in 1991, which the filmmakers fictionally reimagine to be when she made the decision to leave Prince Charles. The movie works to illustrate how isolated Princess Diana was when she was in the British royal family, and how she basically had no one to turn to… except for one person. Maggie, Princess Diana’s dresser (played by Sally Hawkins), is basically the only adult she can trust. Maggie proves to be a confidant for Diana for the first half of the movie, but then in the last few minutes, things take a very different turn.

Maggie admits in a scene near the end of the movie that she’s actually in love with Princess Diana. It’s a little out of left field thematically, but she makes this confession to prove to Diana that there is love for her in the world even though the family she’s married into doesn’t treat her that way. But this movie is based on Diana’s actual life, so you might be screaming to yourself right now, “DID THIS REALLY HAPPEN!?” Here’s what we know.

Princess Diana did have dressers.

It was someone’s job to orchestrate all of Diana’s outfits and coordinate everything for her, but it seems like she had a few different dressers over time. One woman, Fay Appleby, was Diana’s dresser for six years. They were super close. In an interview in 1997, Appleby detailed some of her job responsibilities. “I’d wish her good morning, draw her curtains, settle her with breakfast and run her bath. Then I’d come back and discuss her engagements and we’d choose an outfit together.”

But it doesn’t appear that any of them were in love with her.

The Maggie character seems not necessarily based on a real person, but based on a job that did exist within the royal family. Appleby was married to a man, FWIW, and there’s no proof that any of Diana’s maids ever confessed that they loved her.

Again, this movie is a work of fiction. It’s a biopic, but also like… not really. The movie begins by saying it’s a fable, and there are lots of things in it that are completely made up but work to illustrate the larger points of the movie. Like, it appears that Diana’s curtains being sewn shut is also not based in any real fact, and Diana’s childhood home wasn’t dilapidated like the movie makes it seem. So while it’s a nice twist at the end of the movie, there’s no proof it really happened IRL. Oh well!

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