Palace to protect King Charles's from 'exploitative' Netflix drama

Buckingham Palace moves to protect King Charles’s reputation from ‘exploitative’ Netflix dramatisation of his bitter marriage and divorce with Princess Diana – and his affair with Queen Consort Camilla – in The Crown’s fifth season

  • Buckingham Palace has moved to protect King Charles’s reputation from Netflix’s ‘exploitative’ royal drama
  • Series five of The Crown will detail the split between Prince Charles and Princess Diana during the 1990s
  • The series, which will be released on November 9, will also include their famous television interviews 

Buckingham Palace has moved to protect King Charles’s reputation from an ‘exploitative’ Netflix dramatisation of his bitter marriage and divorce with Princess Diana – and his affair with Queen Consort Camilla – in The Crown’s fifth season.

The popular royal drama will focus on the then Prince and Princess of Wales’ divorce in its latest season, which will be released on November 9.

At the weekend, a trailer released by The Crown showed Princess Diana, portrayed by Elizabeth Debicki, and Prince Charles, played by Dominic West, preparing for television interviews about their relationship.

The release will come two months into King Charles’s reign, with Buckingham Palace preparing to protect the new monarch’s reputation, as a senior royal source stressed that the show is a ‘drama not a documentary’.

A friend to the King said that international streaming giant Netflix would have ‘no qualms about mangling people’s reputations’, branding the show as ‘exploitative’

‘What people forget is that there are real human beings and real lives at the heart of this,’ they told The Telegraph.

The latest clip includes a reporter calling the royal couple’s actions ‘all out war’, as their marriage deteriorated. 

The Crown’s fifth season release will come two months into King Charles’s reign, with Buckingham Palace preparing to protect the new monarch’s reputation. Pictured, King Charles and the Queen Consort on Sunday, September 25

Fans eagerly anticipating the return of The Crown were given a teaser at the fifth series on Saturday as a new trailer was dropped

The short 37-second clip portrayed when the news of the dramatic breakdown of Diana and Charles’ marriage was revealed to the public and the ensuing family drama that all took place under the brightest of spotlights

A cacophony of reports are then heard being mixed up in the background that culminate with the phrase: ‘This is becoming all-out war’ as the screen shows the pair getting ready to do news interviews

Diana – played by Elizabeth Debicki – looks smart in a green jacket and skirt while Charles – played by Dominic West – wore a dark suit as he sat on the chair and fiddled nervously with his hands

The season has not been postponed following Queen Elizabeth II’s death, and no changes have been made to its content in light of this month’s events. 

The fifth series will span the 1990s, including events from 1992, the late monarch’s annus horribilis – horrible year – during which Prince Andrew and Prince Charles separated from their wives, the Princess Royal divorced her husband Mark Phillips, and part of Windsor Castle burnt down. 

It will begin with Sir John Major as Prime Minister and conclude with the arrival of Tony Blair. During this time, Prince Charles admitted to Jonathan Dimbleby that he committed adultery with the then Camilla Parker Bowles.

It also saw Princess Diana interviewed by Martin Bashir for Panorama in an interview that has had years of repercussions.

Princess Diana’s death – which took place in 1996 – will not be covered until the sixth and final series. 

It was announced last year that Elizabeth Debicki would take over from Emma Corrin and play Diana for the fifth and sixth series, which will cover Diana’s death in 1997

Netflix confirmed the release date at the Tudum: A Netflix Global Fan Event which was broadcast across the streamer’s YouTube channels

Princess Diana’s death – which took place in 1996 – will not be covered until the sixth and final series 

Royal aides believe that the couple will be able to counter The Crown’s portrayal of themselves better now that that Charles is King. 

A source told The Telegraph that the royal couple’s raised profile as King and Queen Consort mean that people around the world will have ‘more of an opportunity to compare the real people with the fiction they see in The Crown’.

‘In the past they didn’t get so much coverage, so in that sense it was harder for people to be able to compare and contrast the drama with the reality,’ they added. 

Fans eagerly anticipating the return of The Crown were given a teaser of the fifth series on Saturday as a new trailer was dropped.

The short 37-second clip portrayed when the news of the dramatic breakdown of Diana and Charles’ marriage was revealed to the public and the ensuing family drama that all took place under the brightest of spotlights.

It was also revealed that the next instalment will premiere on Netflix on Wednesday, November 9 – where fans will see Imelda Staunton take on the role of Queen Elizabeth II for the first time.

The video starts with an eerie voiceover saying: ‘Buckingham Palace is issuing this statement: It is with regret that the Prince and Princess of Wales are separating’.

A news bulletin is then heard in the background stating: ‘There’s uproar in Britain after Prince Charles bared his soul to the nation but the Princess of Wales upstaged her husband speaking about her marriage, her life and her future.’

The next instalment will premiere on Netflix on Wednesday, November 9 – where fans will see Imelda Staunton take on the role of Queen Elizabeth II for the first time

The airdate for the new series has finally been confirmed, which will be the first time fans see Imelda take on the role of Queen Elizabeth II

A cacophony of reports are then heard being mixed up in the background that culminate with the phrase: ‘This is becoming all-out war’ as the screen shows the pair getting ready to do news interviews. 

Diana looks smart in a green jacket and skirt while Charles wore a dark suit as he sat on the chair and fiddled nervously with his hands. 

The final black screen then flashes up with: ‘The Crown: November 9.’ 

Netflix confirmed the release date at the Tudum: A Netflix Global Fan Event which was broadcast across the streamer’s YouTube channels.

Unlike her husband, the Queen Consort has watched The Crown, and earlier this year invited Emerald Fennell, who depicts her on screen, to an International Women’s Day event at Clarence House.

The television show surged into Netflix’s top 10 following the Queen’s death, when 17.6 million hours were viewed.

Filming was suspended for a day following the late monarch’s death, with cameras staying off on the day of the Queen’s funeral as well.  

In series five, Imelda Staunton will take over the role of the Queen from Olivia Coleman and Claire Foy. Jonathan Pryce, 73, will play Prince Philip and Lesley Manville, 64, will act as Princess Margaret.


Lesley Manville was confirmed to have joined the cast of The Crown as Princess Margaret back in 2020 

James Murray will take on the role of Prince Andrew, replacing Tom Byrne, who played the Queen’s second son in series four. 

The sixth and final series of the Emmy award-winning show will cover the death of Princess Diana. 

The fourth series, which streamed in November last year, told the story of the early romance between Charles and Diana. 

It was announced last year that Elizabeth Debicki would take over from Emma Corrin and play Diana for the fifth and sixth series, which will cover Diana’s death in 1997.

The actress said of her casting last year: ‘Princess Diana’s spirit, her words and her actions live in the hearts of so many. It is my privilege and honour to be joining this masterful series, which has had me absolutely hooked from episode one.’

Meanwhile Dodi Fayed is expected to play a large part in the next series of The Crown, with British actor Khalid Abdalla, 39, who starred in the 2007 film The Kite Runner, cast in the role.

The final two series of The Crown will cover the Royal Family’s history throughout the 1990s and into 2003, however it is not yet know which moments will be seen.

There are several poignant moments which could be used, including the Queen making a speech on her 40th anniversary of her accession in 1992, in which she called the year an ‘annus horriblis’.

Other notable events during the time period included a fire at Windsor Castle and the deaths of Princess Margaret and the Queen Mother.

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