Some actors gain weight to fit the part, while others watch hours and hours of footage for the person they're portraying on-screen.
Bonham Carter will take over from BAFTA winner Vanessa Kirby to play the aging and rebellious princess and sister to Queen Elizabeth in The Crown seasons three and four. In a recent interview with The Guardian, she revealed she spoke to a psychic to get the royal's seal of approval.
“She said, apparently, she was glad it was me," the Harry Potter actress said. "My main thing when you play someone who is real, you kind of want their blessing because you have a responsibility." Since Princess Margaret died in 2002, Bonham Carter looked to a more nonconformist approach.
“So I asked [the psychic]: ‘Are you OK with me playing you?’ and she said: ‘You’re better than the other actress’…that they were thinking of. They will not admit who it was. It was me and somebody else," Bonham Carter revealed, and said that was a very Margaret thing to say.
“That made me think maybe she is here, because that is a classic Margaret thing to say. She was really good at complimenting you and putting you down at the same time." (We're no experts after watching the first two seasons, but we totally get what she means…)
The psychic who was channeling and/or interpreting Princess Margaret's thoughts also told Bonham Carter she needed to hone in on one particular aspect of the royal: her smoking.
“She said: ‘But you’re going to have to brush up and be more groomed and neater.’ Then she said: ‘Get the smoking right. I smoked in a very particular way. Remember that—this is a big note—the cigarette holder was as much a weapon for expression as it was for smoking.’”
Even Princess Margaret in the psychic afterlife is a bit bossy…but it makes us love her that much more.
Josh O’Connor (Florence Foster Jenkins) and Marion Bailey (Allied) will take on the roles of Prince Charles and the Queen Mother, respectively, while Pennyworth’s Emma Corin will play a minor role as Princess Diana in season three (and take on the much bigger role in season four, when Diana is being courted by Prince Charles). Call the Midwife’s Emerald Fennell will play Camilla Parker Bowles and Sex Education’s Gillian Anderson will play “Iron Lady” Margaret Thatcher.
Season three will span the years of 1964 to 1977 of QEII’s reign and appears to be a bit darker judging by Colman's chilly stare at the end of the latest teaser.
But trust our eyes will be laser-focused on only one thing: Bonham Carter's chain smoking.