An account of the duchess’s life is heading to the big screen
As charming American divorcées who married into the monarchy, comparisons between Wallis Simpson and the Duchess of Sussex have been inevitable. Now, as Prince Harry and Meghan step back from royal duties to begin a new life in California, the correlation is all the more poignant.
It seems film producers agree, deeming this an apt time to bring the Duchess of Windsor’s story to the big screen. The Gotham Group has secured the rights to Anna Pasternak’s biography, The American Duchess: The Real Wallis Simpson, and will be producing the project, which is set to depict Simpson’s beginnings in America and subsequent relationship with King Edward VIII. In 1936, the couple changed the course of history when Edward abdicated the throne in order to wed the elegant socialite.
“Now that our American duchess, Meghan, has moved back to Hollywood, never has it been timelier to consider the fate of the original American duchess, Wallis Simpson,” Pasternak told Deadline. “As both could attest, life has always been difficult for women marrying into Britain’s royal family.”
Although further details are yet to be confirmed, rumour has it that Cate Blanchett has been approached to play Simpson, a choice that we wholeheartedly applaud. If Blanchett does accept the role, she will follow in the footsteps of Andrea Riseborough who played the duchess in Madonna’s directorial debut, W.E., as well as Lia Williams who appeared in The Crown.
As for who will play Edward VIII, Pasternak has already revealed her preference. “Personally, I think Damian Lewis would be wonderful as Wallis’s husband,” she said. We wait with bated breath.