The Final Five Seconds of Princess Diana's Royal Wedding Interview Were Very Telling, Interviewer Says

"Maybe we should have read so much more into that five seconds at the end the interview. It might have told us so much more about what was to come."

  • In an interview just before her wedding to Prince Charles in 1981, Princess Diana's body language and facial expressions may have offered a clue about the difficulties that were coming for her as a royal.
  • Speaking for a new Channel 5 documentary, journalist Angela Rippon, who conducted the interview in 1981, reflected on Diana's demeanor at the time.
  • "That expression on Diana's face at the end speaks volumes," Rippon explains in the documentary. "Maybe we should have read so much more into that five seconds at the end the interview. It might have told us so much more about what was to come."

Princess Diana and Prince Charles' marriage wasn't without its share of difficulties—and, according to one of Diana's pre-wedding interviewers, we might have all missed a big clue about what was coming.

In 1981, the couple sat down for an interview ahead of their wedding with BBC News anchor Angela Rippon and ITV's Andrew Gardener. In a new interview for the Channel 5 documentary Charles and Di: The Truth Behind their Wedding, Rippon reviewed the interview for the first time since 1981 and reflected on Princess Diana's demeanor in the lead-up to her royal wedding.

"Lady Diana was almost slumped in the chair, she was in new territory. She was out of her depth," Rippon explained in the interview. "Put any 20-year-old in front of a television camera and say this is an interview about what could be one of the most important days of your life and it's going to be seen by hundreds of millions of people around the world, and there is this man standing behind the person interviewing you making sure you get it right. Crikey, anyone would be nervous."

Looking back, Rippon says Diana's facial expression at the very end of the interview—a downcast look—may have been incredibly telling about what was to come for her in royal life.

"With the knowledge of hindsight you read so much more into body language, what was said, looks that were given, reactions," Rippon said. "That's the value of hindsight isn't it. But the final few moments of the interview really stand out to her, when she wishes the couple a lifetime of happiness. Charles looks Diana, but she looks down at the floor. That expression on Diana's face at the end speaks volumes. Maybe we should have read so much more into that five seconds at the end the interview. It might have told us so much more about what was to come."

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Kayleigh Roberts
Kayleigh Roberts

Kayleigh Roberts is the weekend editor at Marie Claire, covering celebrity and entertainment news, from actual royals like Kate Middleton and Meghan Markle to Hollywood royalty, like Katie Holmes and Chrissy Teigen. She’s a Ravenclaw who would do great things in Slytherin. To learn more about her, google “Leslie Knope eating salad GIF.