Princess Diana's Friend Jemima Khan Has Stepped Down From Co-Writing 'The Crown' Season 5

She didn't agree with the portrayal of her late friend.

princess diana
(Image credit: Getty)

The Crown season 4 was generally kind to Princess Diana, making viewers everywhere empathize with her difficult time in the royal family. Not so with the upcoming season 5—at least according to one of the late royal's close friends, Jemima Khan, who has recently stepped down from her role as a screenwriter on the series.

"In 2019, Peter Morgan [the show's creator, with whom Khan had a brief romantic relationship] asked me to co-write on the fifth series of The Crown, particularly those episodes which concerned Princess Diana’s last years before she died," Khan told The Times. "After a great deal of thought, having never spoken publicly about any of this before, I decided to contribute."

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Explaining the reasoning behind her decision, Khan said, "it was really important to me that the final years of my friend’s life be portrayed accurately and with compassion, as has not always happened in the past."

Unfortunately, things didn't quite go according to plan. "We worked together on the outline and scripts from September 2020 until February 2021," Khan added. "When our co-writing agreement was not honored, and when I realized that particular storyline would not necessarily be told as respectfully or compassionately as I had hoped, I requested that all my contributions be removed from the series and I declined a [writing] credit."

Khan, a former journalist who now works primarily as a filmmaker, was formerly married to cricketer Imran Khan, Pakistan's current prime minister, The Times reports. Diana was linked romantically for a time to Imran Khan's distant cousin, Hasnat Khan, a heart surgeon—a storyline which will be explored on The Crown's new season.

The series, which has so far recounted the royal family's trials and tribulations from then-Princess Elizabeth and Prince Philip's wedding up to the decline of Prince Charles and Princess Diana's marriage, has caused its fair share of controversy already, and it seems unlikely to let up anytime soon.

Iris Goldsztajn
Morning Editor

Iris Goldsztajn is a London-based journalist, editor and author. She is the morning editor at Marie Claire, and her work has appeared in the likes of British Vogue, InStyle, Cosmopolitan, Refinery29 and SELF. Iris writes about everything from celebrity news and relationship advice to the pitfalls of diet culture and the joys of exercise. She has many opinions on Harry Styles, and can typically be found eating her body weight in cheap chocolate.