When art is based on real events, things can get complicated — especially if the people whom those real things happened to are still alive. Netflix’s The Crown follows the sometimes scandalous lives of the British royal family through multiple generations. The show will get closer to the present day than it ever has, going into season 3.
Claire Foy, who portrayed Queen Elizabeth for the first two seasons, has stepped down in favor of Olivia Colman. The Favorite Oscar winner will play the royal in a season that will also introduce fans to the future Princess Diana (Emma Corrin). That may be why it was a bit weird for Colman to meet Prince William, grandson of the Queen and son of the late Diana.
Colman told The Graham Norton Show that she met the elder prince recently, but that he didn’t exactly gush over her upcoming role on The Crown.
“[It] didn’t go very well,” she told the host of sitting down with the Prince. “I met Prince William at a dinner and he asked what I was doing at the moment before he quickly added, ‘Actually, I know what you’re doing.’ I was so excited and asked, ‘Have you watched it?’ His answer was a firm, ‘No.’ But he was very charming and very lovely.”
It would be weird to watch your family’s legacy play out on a Netflix series, especially when it doesn’t always portray the royals in a great light. Do you really want to know if your grandfather had a clandestine affair? Do you need to know the shocking details of your great aunt’s love life? Maybe not. If the royal family already loathes the British tabloids for spilling tea, they probably aren’t particularly fond of a scripted version of their family’s lives.
Should The Crown continue past its planned season 4, Prince William may find himself talking to the actor portraying him in the present day. Whether he'll be more inclined to chat then remains to be seen.
Colman's episode of The Graham Norton Show airs Friday.