The Crown Season 6 (premiering Nov. 16), the final season of the Netflix hit, begins during one of Princess Diana's most photographed times in history: the weeks before her sudden death in France in 1997.
As the newest season of The Crown begins, Diana (Elizabeth Debicki) has divorced Prince Charles (Dominic West), meaning we often see the character alone with her children, in addition to spending significant time with Dodi Fayed (Khalid Abdalla), specifically on a yacht in Saint Tropez.
When does 'The Crown' Season 6 come out?
The Crown Season 6 will be released in two parts. The first part of the season (four episodes) premieres on Netflix Nov. 16. The second part will be released on Dec. 14, with six episodes.
The cast for the season includes Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth II, Jonathan Pryce as Prince Philip, Lesley Manville as Princess Margaret, Dominic West as Prince Charles, Elizabeth Debicki as Princess Diana, Claudia Harrison as Princess Anne, Olivia Williams as Camilla Parker Bowles, Salim Daw as Mohamed Al Fayed, and Khalid Abdalla as Dodi Fayed.
In the first part of Season 6, Prince William and Prince Harry are played by Rufus Kampa and Fflyn Edwards, respectively. In Part 2 of the season, Ed McVey plays Prince William, Luther Ford plays Prince Harry, and Meg Bellamy is introduced as Kate Middleton.
'Forensically accurate' outfits for Princess Diana and reimagined looks
Where The Crown has always succeeded is in not just chronicling history, but showing an interpretation of personal moments for the royals, that no one actually saw.
That allows the costume department, specifically, to both play with historically significant pieces and put their own spin on what these characters would wear.
"There are bookended costumes for everybody and I think you make those decisions that they serve the story to be as accurate, as forensically accurate as you can be, because within that you've got a journey," costume designer Amy Roberts told Yahoo Canada. "You can be more imaginative, if you like, or telling us a particular story with clothes."
When it came to transforming Elizabeth Debicki into Princess Diana for this final season, fellow costume designer on The Crown, Sidonie Roberts, highlighted that there were some looks she "desperately" wanted to achieve on the show.
"I'd seen a photo like this and she just wears a massively oversized Adidas T-shirt. Super unglam, but somehow incredibly sexy when you've got it with just bare legs," Sidonie said.
But ultimately, echoing Amy, the costume designer stressed that any wardrobe for these characters was always connected to the story.
"We map out each individual character, we map out their story and we talk about where it's ... emotionally appropriate to go more towards a replica," Sidonie, said. "I think when you do that you build up a certain trust, to know that the decision then not to do that is for a reason, it's for a storytelling purpose. "
"With Diana I was granted, through the scripts, quite a lot of opportunity to not do looks that we know."
'It just looks like an unearthed photograph of Diana'
In terms of creating looks that aren't based on Princess Diana's documented wardrobe, there are a few examples to look out for in The Crown Season 6, Part 1, particular in moments when Diana is with Dodi.
For example, when Diana is leaving Saint Tropez, initially with Dodi by her side, she's wearing navy and white striped trousers and a Guy Laroche top, which wasn't actually based on a photographed look.
"That was an important moment for us because I think it looks so tremendously like her, ... but it wasn't based on a particular look," Sidonie said.
"That's when we are doing our job, hopefully very well. It just looks like an unearthed photograph of Diana."
There is another scene in the upcoming season where Diana is getting ice cream with Dodi and she's wearing a sailor top and a Canary Islands cap. Sidonie explained that the goal of that look was to show that she's a woman "between two worlds."
"She's on the boat where, hopefully she's not being papped, she doesn't really think anyone's there, but then she goes into the world," Sidonie said.
"We desperately wanted to put her in that black waistcoat that we all know of her and I remember we had the conversation with Christian [Schwochow], the director, and he was like, 'No, I want that to feel like an extension of that, like for a minute maybe she thinks she can go somewhere and not be recognized if she's in more kind of normal clothes,' if you like. So that was almost like her version of what we'd wear on holiday if we were going to get ice cream."
Recreating Kate Middleton, Prince William's university days
While fans are anxiously waiting to see how The Crown handles Princess Diana's days before her death, this final season also marks the introduction of university-aged Kate Middleton (Bellamy) and Prince William (McVey), when they were both studying at St. Andrews University in Scotland.
"It's obviously ... a big change," hair & makeup designer Cate Hall teased about creating these new characters, set in the 2000s. "I started in Season 3 in the 1960s, so to come full circle, ... to be almost up to date, and certainly creating characters who are very familiar to me."
"I was born in the same month actually as Prince William, so as I was growing up his kind of landmark moments echoed mine. There was a familiarity to it, which was comforting and made it a bit easier."
'Last chance' to be 'emotionally accurate' with the characters in 'The Crown'
Overall for The Crown Season 6, there was a sense responsibility in handling the depiction of these characters, particularly after the death of Princess Diana and with this season being released after the death of Queen Elizabeth II.
"There are a lot of decisions ... that have to be dealt with very carefully and be emotionally accurate about it, given history," Amy said. "We know what's happened and what they're going to deal with in these final stories."
"Being very clear and truthful about the visuals, that was the biggest challenge. ... Serving them very well, because that was sort of our last chance."