Leading British factual producer Blink Films is producing a special one-off documentary revealing the story behind Diana, Princess of Wales’ extraordinary BBC Panorama interview.
Diana, Princess of Wales’ November 1995 interview with the BBC’s Panorama was one of the most momentous programmes in the history of television. Its revelations stunned the world, painted the monarchy as cruel and oppressive and put its future in jeopardy. Allegations about how and why Diana was persuaded by a relatively unknown journalist to take part have remained unanswered since then. Now, 25 years on Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview speaks to key insiders at the BBC and those who knew and worked closely with Diana, and along with archive documents pieces together the full story behind the explosive interview
As well as revealing intimate details of her own private life and her husband’s affair with Camilla Parker Bowles in the Panorama interview, Diana indicated she did not want to become Queen of England – and also cast doubt on Prince Charles’ suitability as future King.
But, with established star interviewers across the UK and US all seeking to speak to her for their high profile talk shows, why was Diana persuaded by Martin Bashir - a relatively unknown, junior ranking journalist to give an exclusive interview to a current affairs programme?
Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview builds on years of research to explore methods employed by the BBC as they sought to persuade Diana to talk. It hears from insiders how the BBC created forged documents and asks whether these were what persuaded her to go public.
Other interviewees include Diana’s former Private Secretary Patrick Jephson, biographer Andrew Morton, and Sir Max Hastings – the former Daily Telegraph editor who reveals how Diana told him the whole story – long before the approaches from Panorama – but he declined to publish, because of the damage it would cause.
The extraordinary, revelations of Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview will pull back the veil of secrecy which has surrounded Diana’s own astonishing TV confessions for a quarter of a century.
Shaminder Nahal, Commissioning Editor, Specialist Factual, said: “This is one of the world’s most famous television interviews - viewers watched enthralled and shocked as Princess Diana revealed the stories of her broken marriage. But how did Martin Bashir and the BBC production team get her to do it? Years of deep digging into what really happened has led to Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview from Blink Films - and it’s a genuinely intriguing and fascinating watch, raising serious questions that have been unanswered for years.”
Dan Chambers, Creative Director of Blink Films added: “Diana’s Panorama interview stunned the world and rocked the Monarchy with its revelations about her relationship with her husband and the Royal family. But it also raised questions and allegations about just how a junior journalist scooped his high-profile competitors which have largely unanswered for 25 years. We are now able to tell the full, extraordinary story.”
Diana: The Truth Behind the Interview is a Blink Films production for Channel 4. The Executive Producers are Dan Chambers and Tom Adams and the Director is Andy Webb. It was commissioned for Channel 4 by Fatima Salaria and is being overseen at Channel 4 by Shaminder Nahal. It is being distributed internationally by Fremantle.
Blink Films, a Tin Roof Media company, has recently been commissioned to produce Meet The Chimps, a six-part Natural History series for Disney+; Rose West and Myra Hindley: The Untold Story for ITV; Tom Kerridge Barbecues for Food Network UK; Unforgotten for BBC2; Mummy Mysteries for Travel Channel and Channel 5; Dog Tales and Cat Tales for PBS/NOVA. Blink is currently in production on a range of projects for broadcasters including a six part series for the Smithsonian Channel and a 10-part series for the Science Channel
About Blink Films
Blink Films is a BAFTA award winning production company based in London and Ireland. Set up in 2007 by Dan Chambers and Justine Kershaw, Blink has produced over 400 hours of factual, documentaries, features, factual entertainment, drama-doc and comedy programming. Our award-winning programmes are noted for their intelligence, warmth and creativity – whether tackling the sensitive subject of death through a ground-breaking experiment, exploring what it is to be human through a landmark science series, or creating a new entertainment format around gadgets and technology. Blink Films is a Tin Roof Media company.
About Tin Roof Media
Tin Roof Media was created in 2015 and houses leading British independent factual television producers Blink Films and Outline Productions. The Group, chaired by Rod Henwood, is headquartered in London with production bases in London and Wales and creates, produces and distributes award-winning television content for broadcasters and platforms worldwide including Disney+, Netflix, Discovery, National Geographic, BBC, ITV, Channel 4, ITV, Sky, HGTV and Smithsonian Channel. Tin Roof Media is backed by Rockpool Investments.