The Crown, the Netflix series chronicling Queen Elizabeth's reign, has just returned with its third chapter, but die-hard fans of the show are already getting excited about season four, when the story will introduce Princess Diana, and, as actor Josh O'Connor says, show a "different side" of Prince Charles.
Helping to fuel that buzz? Four Golden Globes nominations for season three, including individual nods for Olivia Colman, Tobias Menzies, and Helena Bonham Carter, in addition to a nomination in the best TV drama category.
“We’re incredibly grateful that in such a rich year for British talent The Crown has been recognized. To see the new cast resonate with audiences and critics around the world has been an absolute thrill," executive producer Suzanne Mackie told Deadline. "We’re delighted for Olivia, Tobias and Helena but also for the entire production team who have worked so hard to make the series — we’re very proud of every member of the cast and crew.”
Here's everything we know so far about what's next for the series:
We could see new episodes in 2020.
An official premiere date has yet to be shared publicly, but in an interview with Harper's Bazaar, O'Connor hinted that season four could arrive next year.
"We’re well into it now," he said about filming the show's next chapter. "We’ve got many months left, they’ve got a few episodes in, so it’s really exciting. And I think it will be the best yet, actually. I’m really looking forward to finishing that and then getting to share it sometime in 2020, I guess."
We'll continue to update, as more information is revealed about the timing of season four.
The first photos from season four were just revealed.
This snapshot shows actors Josh O’Connor, who plays Prince Charles, and Emma Corrin, who has been cast as Princess Diana, filming in Spain, but recreating an iconic moment from Charles and Diana's 1983 royal tour of Australia. Notably this official visit was the first time that Diana had traveled overseas, and also Prince William's first royal tour at just nine months old.
Here's another picture of Corrin in costume, again recreating that iconic tour of Australia:
Here's what we know so far about the cast for season four.
Gillian Anderson will play Margaret Thatcher.
Gillian Anderson (The X-Files, Sex Education) is set to play the first woman prime minister of the U.K. The show announced the news on social media, noting that season four was already in production. "Thatcher was undoubtedly formidable but I am relishing exploring beneath the surface and, dare I say, falling in love with the icon who, whether loved or despised defined an era," Anderson said in a statement.
Previously, several outlets had reported that she'd been cast, but The Crown had yet to comment on the news.
Gillian Anderson will play Margaret Thatcher in The Crown Season Four, now in production. pic.twitter.com/OVCO8o2bVk— The Crown (@TheCrownNetflix) September 7, 2019
The first image of Anderson in costume (above) surfaced in mid-October, as filming on the fourth season began.
Princess Diana will also be introduced in season four.
In April, Netflix shared the news that Emma Corrin, a relative newcomer who has appeared on Grantchester, will be playing the late Princess of Wales.
"I have been glued to the show and to think I'm now joining this incredibly talented acting family is surreal," Corrin said in a statement about the role. "Princess Diana was an icon and her effect on the world remains profound and inspiring. To explore her through Peter Morgan's writing is the most exceptional opportunity, and I will strive to do her justice."
Diana will be introduced in season four, which has begun filming.
Previously, the Sun published what it purported to be an ad for the role, which called for an actress between the ages of 18 and 20. "We need a mesmerizing new young star with extraordinary range," it reads, per the Sun. "She has to play charming comedy, flirt and social exhibitionist on the world stage, desperate and lonely self-harmer at her lowest ebb and the kind of psychological intensity of Mia Farrow in Rosemary’s Baby."
Most of the rest of the season's cast is already in place.
While there was an enormous upheaval between seasons two and three—showrunner Peter Morgan famously recast the entire show—the majority of the characters will be played by the same actors in seasons three and four. For example, Olivia Colman will star as Queen Elizabeth in both seasons, and Helena Bonham-Carter will portray Princess Margaret.
"It was very sad to say goodbye to the season one and two cast; they were brilliant and we'd all become friends," executive producer Suzanne Mackie told the Hollywood Reporter of the process. "But I don't think any other show has recast its characters between seasons, so there is something both nerve-wracking and exhilarating too."
Seasons three and four are being filmed back-to-back.
Hopefully that means fans of the show won't have to wait such a long time between installments. At this point, Netflix has yet to confirm a schedule for future seasons of the show. Morgan has previously said he hopes for the show to run for six seasons. Season three of The Crown will premiere on Netflix on Sunday, November 17.
Here's what else we know about the plot so far.
Michael Fagan will make an appearance in season four.
Buckingham Palace's most famous intruder, who broke into the Queen's bedroom in 1982, will reportedly make an appearance in the show's fourth chapter. According to the Daily Mail, he'll be played by actor Tom Brooke.
Actor Josh O'Connor says that season four will show a "different side" of Prince Charles.
"I don't want to give anything away, but I'll say that hopefully, people will feel sorry for Charles in season three, and then, maybe, we'll change that in season four," he said in an interview with T&C about season three.
"Certainly, it feels like there's a definite shift being told in season three. And all across four, there's definitely a different side to Charles that we're going to see."
Watch a preview of The Crown's third season here:
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