Warning: Contains minor spoilers for season three of The Crown.
After binge-watching season two of Netflix’s The Crown, which was released in December, you probably can’t wait to see what’s in store for the fascinating royals as the show explores the next stage of their lives. The next two seasons will only get more interesting as we become intimately acquainted with some of the younger members of the family and their drama.
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Here are the answers to all of your burning questions about season three of the hit show—and we’ll be making updates as we learn more.
When will it air?
The BBC reports that season three will air some time in 2019, although past seasons were spaced only a year apart. The next season has not yet been fully cast, but filming will begin in July 2018.
What’s the time period?
Season two left off in 1964, andThe Sunday Times reports that season three will cover “the Wilson era,” which refers to approximately 1964 to 1976. According to Vanity Fair, however, the next season will start in the 1970s.
So, what do we know is going to happen?
It has been confirmed that season three will show the beginnings of the breakdown between Princess Margaret and Antony Armstrong-Jones’ relationship. The couple divorced in 1978.
Who is in the new cast?
As the storyline progresses further in history, the decision was made to recast the main characters every two seasons (six seasons are planned in total) in order to portray them in their later years.
It was announced in October that British actress Olivia Colman will be replacing Claire Foy as Her Majesty in the third and fourth season. Colman won a Golden Globe in 2017 for Best Supporting Actress for her role in The Night Manager.
Claire Foy and Olivia Colman
On July 16, the first image of Colman as the Queen was released on Twitter:
Helena Bonham Carter has been confirmed to play Princess Margaret in seasons three and four, after Vanessa Kirby played her for two seasons, Vulture reports. Kirby teased the casting in January with a cryptic Instagram post of her self and Bonham Carter, with the caption “Honoured @thecrownnetflix.”
The first image of Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret was released on July 18:
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“I’m not sure which I’m more terrified about—doing justice to the real Princess Margaret or following in the shoes of Vanessa Kirby’s Princess Margaret,” Bonham Carter said in a statement. “The only thing I can guarantee is that I’ll be shorter than Vanessa.”
In March, it was announced that Tobias Menzies will play Prince Philip—previously played by Matt Smith—in season 3. According to Deadline, the actor has signed on for two seasons; he’s known for his work in Outlander, Game of Thrones, and AMC’s spring series The Terror. There was talk that the part would go to Paul Bettany (you may know him from the Marvel Cinematic Universe), but it was announced in late January that he could not take on the role due to a scheduling conflict.
The first image of Menzies as Prince Philip was released on August 28:
Ben Daniels will play Antony Armstrong-Jones, a role played by Matthew Goode in the last season. Netflix released an image of him in the role, too:
Netflix has also announced that Jason Watkins, of the British sitcom Trollied, will play Prime Minister Harold Wilson in the third season.
In June, we discovered that Erin Doherty, of Call the Midwife fame, was lined up to play Princess Anne, the daughter of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Previously, the young version of Anne was played by Lyla Barrett-Rye.
Will there be any new characters?
People reported that season three will give us our first peek at Princess Diana, who is said to be a focus in later seasons of the show. However, writer Peter Morgan has since said we might not see her until season four.
“The Diana stuff…I haven’t figured out what I’m going to do with her if I ever get that far,” Morgan told Vanity Fair in August. “I’ve mapped out what might be a third season. If she were to be introduced, it’d probably have to wait until the fourth.”
We’ll have to wait and see if the people’s princess makes an appearance, but the next season will apparently introduce Prince Charles’ other love interest, Camilla Parker Bowles, which was confirmed by The Crown‘s producer Suzanne Mackie in April. “Peter’s already talking about the most wonderful things,” Mackie said of Morgan’s work on season three.