In case the royal family’s present-day drama isn’t enough to quench your thirst, please turn your attention to Netflix’s The Crown. The show’s fourth season mainly focused on the early days of then-Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s relationship and marriage—plus a bunch of political drama involving Margaret Thatcher. And trust: It left us wanting more. Fortunately, season 5 is already upon us—although please be advised that there is an entirely new cast! Which is somewhat sad news for those of us who are inexplicably attracted to Prince Charles. (NO, I DON’T HAVE TO EXPLAIN MYSELF!)
Here’s everything we know about The Crown season 5…and while, yes, this is technically a spoiler-free zone, please remember that this show is based on things that legit happened! In real life!
The (Brand! New!) Cast
Again, we’re getting an entire new group of actors in The Crown seasons 5 and 6, and most of them have already been cast. On top of already having our first look at Dominic West and Elizabeth Debicki as Charles and Diana…
Our new Prince Charles (Dominic West) and Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki). pic.twitter.com/2QIMOhY1dE
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) August 17, 2021
…here are some paparazzi pictures of the two of them on-set. And in other news, Prince William and Kate Middleton were just cast! Deadline was the first to report the news, revealing that newcomer Rufus Kampa will play Prince William at age 15 and then Ed McVey will play him as a later teen and early adult. Meanwhile, Meg Bellamy landed the role of Kate.
Netflix Drama ‘The Crown’ Finds Its William And Kate: Two Actors To Play Prince & Newcomer Cast As Kate Middleton In Season 6 https://t.co/j3Mu4tw2RG
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) September 2, 2022
I mean…the resemblance is almost too much for me to handle. These actors won’t appear on the show until season 6 though, which is not coming out this year. Season 5 is this year. Rufus will appear in storylines about how the royal family coped with the death of Princess Diana, whereas Ed will play storylines that start when William is in university, when he meets Kate, etc. It’s also TBD who plays Prince Harry. Here’s who we have for the rest of the cast:
Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth
Imelda Staunton will play Queen Elizabeth II in the fifth and final season of The Crown. pic.twitter.com/hUOob58A9p
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) January 31, 2020
Lesley Manville as Princess Margaret
Lesley Manville will play Princess Margaret in the fifth season of The Crown. pic.twitter.com/R5aZEBOW0t
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) July 2, 2020
Jonathan Pryce as Prince Philip
Jonathan Pryce will play Prince Philip in the final two seasons of The Crown (Seasons 5 and 6), alongside Imelda Staunton and Lesley Manville. pic.twitter.com/zI7NotOfc4
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) August 13, 2020
Yes, There’s a Teaser
And photos from the set!
Just prior to the show airing, Netflix released very interesting photos of some of the major moments that we’ll get to see this season.
New season, new decade, new cast.
A first look at Season Five of The Crown, arriving November 9 pic.twitter.com/HFN23bVqD1
— Netflix (@netflix) October 14, 2022
Oh, and a trailer!
An interesting note: This big trailer for season 5 may or may not include *the* most interesting use of “Bittersweet Symphony” as the royal family battles the public’s opinion of them as well as the inner turmoil among them. It’s exactly the kind of drama we were expecting from the show’s fifth season.
Will Meghan Markle and Prince Harry Be in It?
Ha ha ha ha, no. And don’t get your hopes up for season 6 either because creator Peter Morgan basically has a 20-year rule:
“Meghan and Harry are in the middle of their journey, and I don’t know what their journey is or how it will end. One wishes some happiness, but I’m much more comfortable writing about things that happened at least 20 years ago. I sort of have in my head a 20-year rule. That is enough time and enough distance to really understand something, to understand its role, to understand its position, to understand its relevance. Often things that appear absolutely wildly important today are instantly forgotten, and other things have a habit of sticking around and proving to be historically very relevant and long-lasting.”
So…What Time Period Will Be Covered?
Each season of The Crown basically spans about a decade, and season 5 will likely take us from sometime in the early ’90s to the early aughts. And a LOT happened in that period.
Not only did Prince Andrew and Fergie split, but Princess Anne and her husband parted ways and Prince Charles and Princess Diana got divorced as well. Most significantly, though, is the tragic fact that Diana died in a car crash in 1997.
If you’ve seen The Queen, you might have an idea of how the show will handle Diana’s tragic death, since The Crown’s creator, Peter Morgan, wrote it.
Will This Be the Final Season?
NOPE! For a moment there, Morgan said season 5 would be The Crown’s last hurrah, but he changed his mind and decided to extend the show—meaning this new cast gets two seasons just like everyone else.
News from the palace: we can confirm there will be a sixth (and final) season of @TheCrownNetflix, in addition to the previously announced five!
— Netflix UK & Ireland (@NetflixUK) July 9, 2020
Morgan told Deadline, “As we started to discuss the storylines for series 5, it soon became clear that in order to do justice to the richness and complexity of the story, we should go back to the original plan and do six seasons. To be clear, series 6 will not bring us any closer to present—it will simply enable us to cover the same period in greater detail.”
When Is It Airing?
Netflix confirmed that The Crown will drop on November 9 aka today! A long time between seasons, but Morgan told THR this would have been the case even if we weren’t living through a pandemic:
“It’s a normal schedule for us because what happens is, as you’ve noticed, we filmed The Crown in two-season chunks, so we had Claire Foy for two seasons; we’ve now got Olivia Colman for two seasons. And there was a gap year in there in which I frantically do a draft of all the scripts and then I rewrite the scripts and polish the scripts after that—but at least we have a road map of where we’re going for the two seasons. And I said that there was no way that I could possibly do that and be showrunning the seasons if they were in production. You do need a gap year to get ahead with the writing.”
The Royals Are, as Ever, Spiraling
The Telegraph reports that the palace has “moved to protect” King Charles’s reputation ahead of the season and notes that the timing “could not have been worse” with the show coming just two months into his reign.
Meanwhile, this clip from the season had everyone on edge when it came out:
And a senior royal source told The Telegraph last month that The Crown is “a drama, not a documentary,” while a friend of the King called the show “exploitative” and said that Netflix would have “no qualms about mangling people’s reputations.”
We Got Some Spoilers on the Show’s Final Moments
Kay, so technically, this is season 6 info, but according to The Sun, The Crown will end in 2005 with the wedding of Prince Charles and Duchess Camilla. Which, yep, means Prince William and Prince Harry will be cast as adults.
“It’s a small but significant shift because it’s seen as marking the start of an era which becomes more focused on Princes William and Harry and their father,” a source says. “The marriage of Charles and Camilla is treated like the end of one turbulent period in the Windsors’ story and the start of a whole new one.”
On top of that, this opens the door for a sequel about Charles and his sons, so get ready!
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