The Crown: Former staff of Prince Charles and Camilla say Netflix show gets couple completely wrong

Roisin O'Connor
·2-min read
Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles and Emerald Fennell as Camilla Parker Bowles in season four of ‘The Crown' (Netflix)
Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles and Emerald Fennell as Camilla Parker Bowles in season four of ‘The Crown' (Netflix)

The Crown is not an accurate portrayal of Prince Charles and Camilla, former and current royal staff members have claimed.

The hit Netflix show has come under scrutiny over its status as a work of fiction, with criticism focusing on the artistic licence it takes with historical events.

The fourth season stars Emma Corrin as Princess Diana, Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles, and Emerald Fennell as Camilla Parker Bowles in its depiction of the infamous royal love triangle.

Insider spoke to a number of staff members, including Grant Harrold, former butler to prince Charles, who said that in seven years of working for him, “he never raised his voice to me”.

Watch: Is The Crown a true story?

He said that, while O’Connor had mastered Charle’s mannerisms and voice, he was more compassionate than he felt the show suggested.

“He's not at all the way they portrayed him,” he said. “He's strong, powerful, and compassionate. And I think he'll make an amazing king,” he said.

Meanwhile, Camilla’s former facialist Deborah Mitchell admitted she had been a “real Diana fan” until she met the duchess, and had not expected the royal to be so “lovely”.

“She's a very thoughtful person, she's very much for women's rights, and when she does any charity work, she does it because she wants to. Not because she has to, or for the fame,” she said. “She doesn't do anything for any other reason than that it's the right thing to do.”

However, the on-screen portrayal of the couple, along with The Crown’s depiction of the struggles faced by the late Princess Diana, has sparked a backlash against them from some fans.

Watch: The famous engagement video in which Prince Charles is asked if he loves Diana and responds, "whatever in love means"

It was recently reported that the joint Twitter account for Charles and Camilla had disabled replies after being inundated with pro-Diana comments.

Netflix released a statement last week to say it would not add an official disclaimer at the beginning of each episode, making clear that the series is a work of fiction.

“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,” a spokesperson said.

Corrin, meanwhile, recently praised the series for getting one scene “exactly” as it was in real life, and explained why she was “shocked” to learn about the real-life event.

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