The Crown season 5: See Imelda Staunton as the Queen

Photo credit: Netflix
Photo credit: Netflix

We finally have an idea of when The Crown will be released on Netflix, and that's November 2022.

The date announcement comes after Netflix released its first look at Imelda Staunton as the Queen in the award-winning historical drama.

The legendary actress takes over from Olivia Colman as the monarch for season 5 and 6, which will conclude the series.

"An early glimpse of our new Queen Elizabeth II, Imelda Staunton," The Crown's official Twitter account accompanied its photo of Imelda as Her Majesty.

Imelda is best known for her Oscar-nominated performance in Mike Leigh's Vera Drake, and playing Dolores Umbridge in Harry Potter.

The cast reshuffle also includes Oscar nominated actress Lesley Manville taking over from Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret, Jonathan Pryce replacing Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip, and The Night Manager's Elizabeth Debicki taking over from Emma Corrin as Princess Diana.

Jonny Miller was recently cast as former Prime Minister John Major.

Season 5 and 6 of Peter Morgan's drama will be set in the mid 1990s up until the early 2000s.

Here's everything you need to know about The Crown season 5.

The Crown season 5: Who's in it?

Elizabeth Debicki will play Princess Diana, taking over from newcomer Emma Corrin who depicted the late royal in series four.

"Princess Diana’s spirit, her words and her actions live in the hearts of so many. It is my true privilege and honour to be joining this masterful series, which has had me absolutely hooked from episode one," Debicki said.

We know that Imelda Staunton will take over from Olivia Colman in the role of Queen Elizabeth.

"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," she said.

Taking over from Helena Bonham Carter as the Queen's somewhat wayward sister, Princess Margaret, is Lesley Manville.

"I could not be happier to be playing Princess Margaret. The baton is being passed on from two formidable actresses and I really don't want to let the side down. Furthermore, to play siblings with my dear friend Imelda Staunton will be nothing short of a complete joy," she said.

Meanwhile, Jonathan Pryce will take over from Tobias Menzies as the Queen's husband, Prince Philip.

"I am delighted to be working with Netflix again. The positive experience I had making The Two Popes has given me the confidence to tackle the daunting prospect of portraying Prince Philip. To be doing so with Peter Morgan in the company of Imelda and Lesley will be a joy," he said.

Jonny Miller - famous for Trainspotting and playing Sherlock Holmes in CBS drama Elementary - was recently cast as former Prime Minister John Major.

The Affair's Dominic West - who is also joining the cast of Downton Abbey for its movie sequel - will take over from Josh O'Connor as Prince Charles.

Meanwhile, Prince William will be played by 13-year-old Senan West. He's Dominic West's real-life son, now playing his on-screen son in his first TV role.

The Crown season 5: What's it about?

As of yet, it's not entirely clear what time frame the series will span, but we can take an educated guess. So far, each instalment of the series has covered around a decade, with season four ending in 1990.

Therefore, we could expect series five to begin around the 1990 mark and end in the early 2000s.

This does add up, given showrunner Peter Morgan has previously spoken about the fifth season of The Crown taking us into the 21st century.

Photo credit: Sophie Mutevelian / Netflix
Photo credit: Sophie Mutevelian / Netflix

With this in mind, viewers might expect to see the dramatisation of the Queen's "annus horribilis" (1992) which saw the breakdown of three of her children's marriages and a fire at Windsor Castle, in series five.

The season could also feature the death of Princess Diana in 1997 and the deaths of the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret in 2002.

However, Elizabeth Debicki being cast in both seasons five and six, despite the fact Princess Diana tragically died in 1997, could suggest the time frames The Crown has previously used won't apply to the final series. Alternatively, Diana might be appearing in the sixth season in a flashback form - a storytelling device the show isn't averse to. Claire Foy briefly reprised her role as a young Queen Elizabeth in season four via a flashback scene.

The Crown season 5: When't it on TV?

We finally know when The Crown season 5 will be arriving on Netflix: November 2022.

Although that still seems a way off, the good news for fans of the show is that you can watch seasons one to four on Netflix currently.

The Crown streams on Netflix.

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Photo credit: Hearst Owned
Photo credit: Hearst Owned

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