Dancing with Dirty Harry: Unseen pictures of 24-year-old Diana at White House gala show princess looking nervous in front of stars
- Photographs of Princess Diana in Washington D.C. in September 1985
- Diana, then 24, looks unsure of herself in images taken by Pete Souza
- Dances with Clint Eastwood, Tom Selleck and President Ronald Reagan
But previously unseen photographs show Princess Diana also taking to the floor with Tom Selleck and Clint Eastwood on that glittering night at the White House in September 1985.
Diana, 24, looks unsure of herself, but would emerge as a global fashion icon thanks to her Victor Edelstein gown which sold in March for £240,000.
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The pictures by White House photographer Pete Souza have emerged as part of a Channel 4 documentary about Diana’s dresses.
In one shot, she clutches Selleck’s shoulder with her left hand while gently holding his hand with the other.
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Selleck, best known for playing Magnum, P.I. in the hit TV series and Monica Geller’s older lover in Friends, cannot contain his joy, beaming while sharing the moment with Diana.
The extraordinary photographs are now seen as a defining moment when the public started to focus more on Diana than on Prince Charles.
The dinner attended by Diana and Charles was part of a trip to the U.S. – and also saw President Ronald Reagan forget the Princess of Wales’s name in an after-dinner speech.
He said: ‘Permit me to add our congratulations to Prince Charles on his birthday just five days away and express also our great happiness that… er… Princess David – Princess Diane (sic) – here on her first trip to the United States.’
The dance with Saturday Night Fever star Travolta in her midnight blue velvet outfit – which became known as the ‘Travolta dress’ – captivated the U.S. and helped to increase Diana’s global profile.
But when people kept asking Charles after the event about Diana’s dance with Travolta, he famously replied: ‘I am not a glove puppet’.
Charles and Diana separated in 1992 before officially divorcing in 1996. Almost a decade later in 2005 he married his former mistress Camilla Parker-Bowles.
The hour-long documentary – entitled Princess Diana’s Dresses: The Auction – focuses in depth on 10 of her dresses sold at auction in March.
But it also takes a look at the other signature styles of the ‘People’s Princess’, who died in a car crash in Paris in August 1997.
The programme features archive footage and never-seen interviews to explain her fashion decisions, influences and motivations.
It also boasts commentary from some of her closest friends and stylists, including Virginia Clarke, with whom she lived during her engagement to Prince Charles.
- Princess Diana’s Dresses: The Auction will be on Channel 4 tomorrow (July 16) at 9pm
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