While fans of The Crown had hoped the series would run until the present day, creator Peter Morgan has confirmed that the series will now end with seasons five and six, taking the royal family into the early 2000s.
But, it seems that fans might be waiting longer for the next installment than they’d like. After season four wrapped in 2020, The Crown‘s production team took a break filming until June this year, which was actually the planned schedule not down to Covid-19, so fans will have to wait until 2022 for series five. Of course, this isn’t the first time The Crown has taken a long break; there was a two-year wait between seasons two and three while they changed casts – which they will do again for the final two series.
It was previously announced that season five would be the final installment, but in July last year, writer Peter Morgan’s initial plan of running the series for six seasons was reinstated.
“As we started to discuss the storylines for series five, 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,” Morgan explained, along with official confirmation from Netflix.
Cindy Holland, Netflix’s VP of original content added: “The Crown keeps raising the bar with each new season. We can’t wait for audiences to see the upcoming fourth season, and we’re proud to support Peter’s vision and the phenomenal cast and crew for a sixth and final season.”
Here’s what we know so far about season five and season six:
Imelda Staunton will play The Queen
Imelda Staunton will take over from Oscar-winner Olivia Colman for season five and six. The Bafta-winning and Oscar-nominated actress – who starred in 2019’s Downton Abbey – said of her casting: “I have loved watching The Crown from the very start.
“As an actor it was a joy to see how both Claire Foy and Olivia Colman brought something special and unique to Peter Morgan’s scripts. I am genuinely honoured to be joining such an exceptional creative team and to be taking The Crown to its conclusion.”
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
Staunton won a Bafta for her role in Vera Drake, and is also known for Shakespeare in Love and for playing Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter franchise.
Lesley Manville will play Princess Margaret
Lesley Manville, previously Oscar-nominated for her role in The Phantom Thread, will replace Helen Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret for the two final series of the show.
“I could not be happier to be playing Princess Margaret,” Manville said. “The baton is being passed on from two formidable actresses and I really don’t want to let the side down.”
Lesley Manville will play Princess Margaret in the fifth season of The Crown. pic.twitter.com/R5aZEBOW0t
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) July 2, 2020
Manville is also known for her roles in Mike Leigh’s Vera Drake – alongside Imelda Staunton – and Another Year, as well as leading BBC2 comedy drama Mum.
Jonathan Pryce will play Prince Philip
Jonathan Pryce will play Prince Philip, taking over from fellow Game of Thrones star Tobias Menzies.
The Welsh 73-year-old, Oscar-nominated last year for The Two Popes, is also known for his role as High Sparrow in GoT, playing a Bond villain in Tomorrow Never Dies, and starring opposite Glenn Close in 2017’s The Wife.
Elizabeth Debicki will play Princess Diana
The Night Manager‘s Elizabeth Debicki has been cast as the late Princess Diana, replacing Emma Corrin. The actress is also known for her roles in The Great Gatsby and The Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2.
Elizabeth Debicki will play Princess Diana in the final two seasons of The Crown (Seasons 5 and 6). pic.twitter.com/Z3CjHuJ56B
— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) August 16, 2020
“Princess Diana’s spirit, her words and her actions live in the hearts of so many,” Debicki said in a statement. “It is my true privilege and honour to be joining this masterful series, which has had me absolutely hooked from episode one.”
Netflix released a first glimpse as Debicki as Princesss Diana, showing her laying on a sofa – and the likeness to Princess Diana is uncanny. Debicki replaces Emma Corrin, who made her debut as the young princess in The Crown in season four.
Olivia Williams will play Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall
Gillian Anderson will return as Margaret Thatcher
From Harper’s Bazaar UK