Royal enthusiasts devoured season 4 of The Crown, but now it’s been two years without the show and fans are really looking forward to know more about Season 5. Here’s everything we know about The Crown Season 5, which premieres exclusively on Netflix on November 9!
No word yet on what, precisely, the fifth season of The Crown will cover. Season 4 ended in 1990, the year Thatcher was “ousted” from her Prime Minister position. Season 5, therefore, will almost certainly cover the early 90s.
Imelda Staunton and Jonathan Pryce take over as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, stepping in for previous stars Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies.
“What has been nice, and I hope I don’t prove them wrong, is people saying, ‘I’m really looking forward to seeing her as the queen,’” Staunton shared in a statement. “So, let’s just hope that works out for them because I’ve done it. Nothing I can do about it now!”
Staunton’s costar was a little more curious about digging into his character’s past. “Doing this and looking into Philip’s background and finding out what made him the man he was, that was the interest to me,” Pryce revealed to Netflix’s TUDUM. “I’m more interested in their life, their emotional life, which is what The Crown explores.”
Dominic West and Elizabeth Debicki embody their royal counterparts alongside the young actors playing Prince Harry and Prince William.
“I think people understand, because the cast has changed every two seasons, that this is not an imitation,” West noted of the transformation of the former couple. “This is an evoking of a character. That’s really where the show lives: in the imagined conversations of their private life, which is something that no one knows. I think that’s what it gets a lot of criticism for. How can you know what they talk about in their private lives? The obvious answer is we don’t, but we have an incredible writer, a dramatist, who imagines based on exhaustive research, and that’s really part of the fascination of the show.”
Debicki says she is “so fortunate to have this huge time span of years in which to play the character. It’s my hope that people feel that there’s an enormous evolution in her as the season progresses. For me, it’s a journey into a human finding a part of themselves that is profoundly strong — there’s a piece that has survived so much and can flourish.”
When Morgan approached West about taking over the role of Charles from Josh O’Connor, who played the part in seasons 3 and 4, the actor did have some thoughts — most of them negative.
“I said, ‘You’ve got the wrong guy, I don’t look anything like him,'” West recalls. But there was another reason the actor demurred: “I was very conscious of Josh’s amazing performance, and his amazing success, and thought it was a bit of a hiding to nothing to try to follow that.”
So what made West change his mind?
“I thought about it for several weeks, and it was one of those things you can’t really get out of your head. [I] realized that you’ve got to give it a go because you’ll regret it if you don’t. He’s a fascinating man, Charles, and it’s a fascinating life, and a fascinating role. I mean, apart from anything else, it’s a huge show, and I loved the first four seasons. I realized that I could very happily live with this character for two years.”
Queen Camilla caught Dominic West off guard!
The 53-year-old actor, who plays the then-Prince Charles in season 5 of The Crown, revealed the hilarious way the Queen Consort addressed him when they crossed paths at a party last year. In the latest issue of Radio Times magazine (which his costar Elizabeth Debicki covers in character as Princess Diana), West said that Camilla greeted him as “Your Majesty” when they saw each other in 2021, an apparent nod to his casting as her husband in Netflix’s hit drama inspired by the lives of the British royal family.
Dominic West Offered to Quit Prince’s Trust Position over Prince Charles Role
After accepting the royal role as the future King Charles III, West told the British magazine he offered to resign from his post as an ambassador with The Prince’s Trust, Charles’ charity which connects at-risk young people in the U.K. with educational opportunities, jobs and other training to reach their full potential.
While The Wire alum raised the idea to avoid a potential conflict of interest, King Charles’ team rejected the resignation and insisted he stay involved. According to West, a letter from the Charles’ private secretary essentially said, “You do what you like, you’re an actor. It’s nothing to do with us.”
“I think that’s probably how [Charles] regards it,” West speculated. “I’ve been in a line to shake his hand a few times, and it’s fascinating. It’s very useful to meet the character you’re playing obviously.”
Elizabeth Debicki’s portrayal comes after the showstopping performance from the show’s first Princess Diana, Emma Corrin.
The new Diana seemed to tease more iconic moments from the princess in her remarks.
“That’s the amazing thing about playing these people at this time, because in the journey of The Crown so far out of all the seasons, this is the most visual content we have of the Royal Family. In the ‘90s everything had started to be filmed and also it was the birth of the 24-hour news cycle so there’s just this incredible amount of content that we have access to. Diana was the most photographed person in the world at that time. As an actor you open the portal and this huge tsunami of information comes at you. I happily swam around in it.”
When it was announced she’d play Diana, she got a lot of text messages about the Revenge Dress.
“It fascinated me how entranced people were with that dress,” says Debicki. “When it became known that I had the part, I received these text messages saying congratulations. [But] there was also a huge amount of text messages about the Revenge Dress. ‘Do you get to wear the Revenge Dress?’ ‘Oh my God, you get to wear the Revenge Dress!'”
The final days of Princess Diana’s life are being handled with sensitivity by the cast and crew of The Crown
“I’ll say that Peter and the entire crew of this job do their utmost to really handle everything with such sensitivity and truth and complexity, as do actors,” she said. “The amount of research and care and conversations and dialogue that happen over, from a viewer’s perspective, something probably that you would never ever notice is just immense. From that very first meeting [with] Peter, I knew that I’d entered into this space where this was taken seriously [in] a deeply caring way. So that’s my experience of the show.”
The Crown star Jonathan Pryce on the friendship between Prince Philip and Penny Knatchbull
“Natascha plays Penny Romsey, who is part of the extended royal family by the Mountbattens,” Pryce tells EW. “Philip creates a friendship with her based on shared grief. Penny Romsey recently, very recently, lost a daughter to cancer and Philip goes and comforts her and explains his own feelings of grief, which are very much connected to his sister who died in an air accident. A friendship grows, and he introduces her to carriage-driving, and she becomes part of that carriage-driving community, which is a group of friends that would meet up, travel the world, and have fun.”
Because of their characters’ hostility towards each other, West and Debicki did not actually work together for long stretches of the shoot.
Both remember fondly shooting a sequence that occurs near the end of the season and finds Charles visiting Diana at her apartment as the pair look back at their relationship.
“That was like a one-act play that Peter Morgan had written,” says West. “It was wonderful to have an imagined scene where there is a rapprochement between these two, who had been through so much, so publicly. It felt right and interesting for them to reflect about being these rock stars. And also on the appalling pressures that had been [put] upon them.”
“I would agree that it was like doing a play,” says Debicki. “That was really something that we both got to do together and build together and it was a beautiful thing to make.”
“One of the great things about The Crown is we get to see those sort of imagined intimate moments. Which maybe give us a better perspective on someone that we’ve judged,” Olivia Willaims shared, hinting at the moments fans may expect from the prince and his future bride. “Charles and Camilla seem to have a very healthy sense of humor about what at times must be an unbearable predicament. And that is the thing that I most want to show.”
West explains that it was fascinating to revisit the controversy and re-enact the phone call with Olivia Williams — and that he found his own thinking reframed by doing so.
“I remember thinking it was something so sordid and deeply, deeply embarrassing [at the time],” he says. “Looking back on it, and having to play it, what you’re conscious of is that the blame was not with these two people, two lovers. Who were having a private conversation. What’s really [clear now] is how invasive and disgusting was the press’s attention to it, that they printed it out verbatim and you could call a number and listen to the actual tape. I think it made me extremely sympathetic towards the two of them and what they’d gone through.”
Lesley Manville steps in as the Queen’s sister, taking over for the most recent Princess Margaret, Helena Bonham Carter.
“I had a lot of documentaries to watch, pictures, loads to read, but finally the scripts arrived, and that’s it,” Manville stated. “All the books I read have different people’s versions of events. So you’ve got to let it go in and just sink in, but then you almost forget about it because finally the scripts come and that’s what you work with.”
Claudia Harrison plays Princess Anne in the latest season.
“Anne’s an extraordinary character. She’s not there to make people feel better about themselves, but she is superb at her job and is a proper feminist,” the actress shared. “She’s someone we can really look up to and I think she has no sense of entitlement.”
Following Gillian Anderson‘s turn as Margaret Thatcher, Season 5 makes way for a new Prime Minister, John Major. The role goes to Jonny Lee Miller, who Morgan commended in a statement shared by Netflix. “I think Jonny Lee Miller is an absolute triumph in the role and a real surprise.”
How Elizabeth Debicki and Dominic West got into character as Diana and Charles
“I think people understand, because the cast has changed every two seasons, that this is not an imitation,” West told Netflix’s Tudum.com. “This is an evoking of a character. That’s really where the show lives: in the imagined conversations of their private life, which is something that no one knows.”
“I think that’s what it gets a lot of criticism for. How can you know what they talk about in their private lives?” the 52-year-old said. “The obvious answer is we don’t. But we have an incredible writer, a dramatist, who imagines based on exhaustive research, and that’s really part of the fascination of the show.”
Debicki, meanwhile, is grateful that The Crown has lots of historical material to draw inspiration from.
“That’s the amazing thing about playing these people at this time, because in the journey of The Crown so far out of all the seasons, this is the most visual content we have of the Royal Family,” she said. “In the ‘90s everything had started to be filmed and also it was the birth of the 24-hour news cycle so there’s just this incredible amount of content that we have access to.”
“Diana was the most photographed person in the world at that time,” Debicki said. “As an actor you open the portal and this huge tsunami of information comes at you. I happily swam around in it.”
First Look of Humayun Saeed as Princess Diana’s Companion Dr. Hasnat Khan
British-Pakistani doctor Hasnat Khan was a heart surgeon at London’s Royal Brompton Hospital, where he first met Princess Diana in 1995. Diana struck up a friendship with him, depicted in “The Crown” as taking place while she was visiting a friend whose husband was undergoing surgery with Khan.
Khan’s 2004 statement to the Metropolitan Police, which was submitted in 2008 to an inquest into Princess Diana’s death, stated that he was in a relationship with her from 1995-1997 and that she broke up with him after she met Dodi Fayed at a holiday with Mohamed Al Fayed and his family.
Dodi Fayed and Princess Diana died together in a road accident in Paris in 1997.
Saeed told Variety: “Dr. Hasnat Khan and Princess Diana were total opposites. He was a very ordinary man in every way and I feel this is what attracted Princess Diana towards him. His nature and simplicity made him special to Princess Diana.”
“I haven’t played a real life character on-screen and to play the role of Dr. Hasnat Khan who everyone knows due to Princess Diana was a huge responsibility,” Saeed added. “I am confident audiences will love the simplicity of the relationship and how it is portrayed on-screen.”
3 Key Relationships to Watch in ‘The Crown’ Season 5
Joining Staunton in The Crown Season 5 cast are Jonathan Pryce as Prince Philip, Dominic West as Prince (now King) Charles, Elizabeth Debicki as Princess Diana, Lesley Manville as Princess Margaret, and former James Bond Timothy Dalton as her returning love Peter Townsend.
Here’s what you’ll see in these three key relationships, as told by the soon-to-debut cast.
The Queen and Prince Philip
As Elizabeth celebrates the 40th anniversary of her accession, scrutiny only increases. “People were more intrusive into their lives,” says Staunton. As to her husband, costar Pryce says Philip is still “a man locked in a restrictive situation. What must he be thinking?”
Charles and Diana
The unhappy couple’s very public “second honeymoon” we see this season “was an attempt to create a reunification of Diana and Charles,” says Elizabeth Debicki, the show’s new Lady Di. As their bond falters, watch for Diana’s first meeting with future lover Dodi Fayed (Khalid Abdalla), and a scene set for tragedy.
Margaret and Peter Townsend
The Queen’s rambunctious sister (Lesley Manville) reunites with former beau Peter Townsend (Dalton) this season.
“Seeing him again stirs up this vision of what Margaret’s future could have looked like,” says Manville. But she’ll have words for her sister, who halted the relationship decades earlier. “Margaret confronts her and says, ‘Look what you deprived me of!’”
Netflix Suffers Royal Headache Over ‘The Crown’ S5, Plus Harry And Meghan’s Documentary Launch Date
Netflix faces a number of courtly challenges in the next couple of months, as it prepares to debut both the fifth season of The Crown, and a documentary starring the Duke and Duchess of Sussex.
Season 5 of The Crown is set to launch on November 5, and already there are rumblings by commentators in the UK that it doesn’t feel appropriate to bring the royals’ real-life 1990s troubles to the screen, so soon after Queen Elizabeth’s death in 2022. The new season devotes much of its time to the warring camps of the divorcing Prince and Princess of Wales, with the Queen depicted as a figure distressed but unable to help with the disintegrating marriage of her son Prince Charles – now King Charles III.
Jemima Khan, a filmmaker who moves in royal circles and was previously attached as a consultant to the project being show-run by Peter Morgan, requested that her name be removed, once she was appraised of the subject matter.
Additionally, Netflix must decide exactly when to drop its much-hyped documentary detailing the Montecito lives of Harry and Meghan.
While the Times reported this week that the streamer is keen for the title to land in December on the back of The Crown, the Duke and Duchess are reported to be requesting changes and late edits – even possibly a postponed release until next year – to the piece directed by the award-winning Liz Garbus, no doubt in light of their recent aattendance in the UK at the funeral of the Duke’s grandmother, Queen Elizabeth.
On top of this, the filmmakers are reported to be “confused” by remarks made by Prince Harry on camera being inconsistent with what he has written in his soon-to-be-published memoir – due out this autumn, but also seemingly delayed for now.
Netflix Adds ‘Fictional’ Disclaimer to Season 5 Trailer
On Friday, a disclaimer was added to the video description that accompanies the Season 5 trailer on YouTube. “Inspired by real events, this fictional dramatisation tells the story of Queen Elizabeth II and the political and personal events that shaped her reign,” it reads.
The same disclaimer, we should note, has long served as the official logline for The Crown, as seen on the series’ Netflix landing page:
The decision to add the disclaimer to YouTube comes just two days after Dame Judi Dench published an open letter to the UK’s The Times that condemned the royal drama for presenting “an inaccurate and hurtful account of history.”
She urged Netflix to add a disclaimer to the beginning of every episode reiterating that the series is a “fictionalised drama.” But in the past, the streaming giant has resisted such pleas — including one from former cast member Helena Bonham Carter.
“It is dramatized,” Carter said, adding her support for a disclaimer during a November 2020 episode of The Crown: The Official Podcast. “I do feel very strongly, because I think we have a moral responsibility to say. ‘Hang on, guys, this is not… it’s not a drama-doc, we’re making a drama.’ So they are two different entities.”
Following Carter’s comments, a Netflix spokesperson told our sister site Variety that the service had no plans to add a disclaimer to The Crown. “We have always presented The Crown as a drama — and we have every confidence our members understand it’s a work of fiction that’s broadly based on historical events,” the company said. “As a result we have no plans — and see no need — to add a disclaimer.”
Jonathan Pryce Defends ‘The Crown’ After Judi Dench Slams Netflix Series
Speaking to Deadline, Jonathan Pryce said he’s “bitterly disappointed” by his “fellow artistes” who have slammed the show in the press. including demands that the series should carry a disclaimer highlighting it as a work of fiction.
The most high-profile criticism came from Dame Judi Dench in an open letter to The Times UK, where she called the series “cruelly unjust to the individuals and damaging to the institution they represent”. She went on to write. “Despite this week stating publicly that The Crown has always been a ‘fictionalized drama,’ the program makers have resisted all calls for them to carry a disclaimer at the start of each episode.”
“The vast majority of people know it’s a drama,” Pryce argued. “They’ve been watching it for four seasons.”
Pryce and his co-stars Imelda Staunton and Lesley Manville agreed that the recent passing of The Queen had heightened the hostility towards the show.
“There is, and for my part as well, a great deal of compassion towards the Queen, and depths of feeling that she is no longer with us. That has certainly heightened it all,” Manville told Deadline.
“In a way, it is understandable. It is understandable people still feel a bit… like their nerve endings are still a little bit raw,” added Staunton.
There’s anxiety behind the scenes on Netflix drama The Crown with stars, creatives and producers “on edge” as preparations are made to recreate the fateful moments that led to the death of Princess Diana in a car crash in Paris twenty-five years ago.
The majority of the scenes will be shot in two weeks with actress Elizabeth Debicki portraying Diana.
Peter Morgan, creator of The Crown, has made clear to this writer in past conversations that the crash itself will not be filmed. That fact was confirmed again to Deadline today by sources at Netflix.
“We’ve been dreading getting to this point. The countdown is two weeks and while we’re calmly carrying on it’s fair to acknowledge that there’s a certain anxiety. A palpable sense of being slightly on edge. I mean, there’s bombshell sensitivity surrounding this one,” a source on the production told Deadline.
The source reiterated points made by others that the supposed collision between the Mercedes-Benz and a Fiat at the entrance to the Pont de l’Alma will not be filmed.
Instead, the show will chart events before and after. ”It’s the run-up: the car leaving The Ritz after midnight with paparazzi in pursuit and then the aftermath with the British Ambassador to France swinging into action with the Foreign Office and then the subsequent constitutional aftermath,” Deadline was told.
Deadline understands that the episode being prepped for season six of The Crown will include scenes showing the then Prince Charles, played by Dominic West, arriving on a royal flight to collect Diana’s body and accompanying it home to London. There will be contrasting scenes of Mohamad Al-Fayed, portrayed by Salim Daw, and the casual racism he endured from French authorities after he took possession of the casket containing his son.
Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth;
Jonathan Price as Prince Philip;
Lesley Manville as Princess Margaret;
Dominic West as Prince Charles (now King Charles III);
Elizabeth Debicki as Princess Diana;
Senan West, Rufus Kampa and Ed McVey as Prince William and Teddy Hawley and Will Powell as Prince Harry;
Jonny Lee Miller as John Major;
Khalid Abdalla as Dodi Fayed;
Philippine Leroy-Beaulieu as Monique Ritz;
Humayun Saeed as Dr. Hasnat Khan;
First Look pictures
Elizabeth Debicki Channels Princess Diana in Mom Mode
Elizabeth Debicki is channeling the People’s Princess in the latest shots from the set of The Crown.
The Australian actress is portraying Princess Diana for the final two seasons of the Netflix hit, which carry viewers throughout the 1990s into the early 2000s.
In new photos, Debicki is seen alongside the actors playing Diana’s young sons, Prince William (Rufus Kampa) and Prince Harry (Will Powell), as filming is underway in Mallorca, Spain.
Debicki is wearing a belted red dress, similar to one Princess Diana wore in July 1997 during a visit to Northwick Park & St. Mark’s Hospital in Harrow, Middlesex, England.
The Princess of Wales made an appearance to celebrate the laying of the foundation stone for the hospital’s new children’s ambulatory care center, with a vibrant ensemble by fashion designer Catherine Walker. Prince William’s wife, Kate Middleton, is regularly seen in Walker’s designs to this day.
These latest photos add to the plethora of familiar scenes that have been shot for The Crown’s final seasons. Princess Diana’s landmark visit to Angola in 1997 and her and Prince Charles’ infamous Italy trip in 1991 — said to be a breaking point in the couple’s turbulent marriage — are just two events many viewers will recognize as they’re recreated for the Netflix series.
Jonathan Pryce says new season isn’t disrespectful to the royal family
“I just find it very disappointing that a handful of people, and it is a handful of people, are being critical of this in any way without having seen it,” he says. “I mean, they say it’s hurtful, unjust, dangerous — none of those things I see in this production. I don’t think any of us do. And as Lesley [Manville] has said in the recent past, she wouldn’t and I wouldn’t be involved in it if we thought there was any hint of disrespect or anything unjust towards the royal family. It’s a thing that’s being stirred up by the press.”
For his part, Pryce he was “delighted” to be cast as Philip.
“I’d seen the whole series from the beginning,” he says. “So I was delighted. Very happy. And the great thing was, Imelda had already been cast, so I knew who was playing the Queen and I was really happy it was Imelda. We have a friendship going over 30 years, [from] when we first worked together on stage. Prince Philip, all I really know about him is what I read in the newspapers, and it’s never very flattering. And then to do the research, and obviously Peter’s done the research, and [you] discover that he was nothing like the man you thought he was. He was an intellectual, highly intelligent, [he had a] great interest in everything, scientific or things to do with the natural world, and a man with a great sense of humor, and a great deal of compassion, and a wonderful loving relationship with his wife.”
The Crown premieres with its fifth season on November 9, 2022.
Source: Elle / Netflix