Biographer Penny Junor, who has been covering the royal family for four decades, has said that Netflix’s The Crown offers a ‘cruel and unfair’ portrayal of the family. The Crown returned for a fourth season, highlighting Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s doomed romance, on Sunday.
Junor told The Times that creator Peter Morgan ‘invented stuff to make expensive and very rich drama.’ She said, “It’s the most cruel and unfair and horrible portrayal of almost all of them.”
Particularly taken aback by Charles’ unfavourable depiction, she said that a scene in which the heir apparent is chided by his uncle, Lord Mountbatten, for being obsessed with Camilla Parker Bowles, is ‘just not historically accurate’. “He adored Mountbatten and he was absolutely devastated by his death,” she said, adding that Charles would be ‘incredibly upset’ by the show.
Also read: The Crown season 4 review: All hail Emma Corrin, scene-stealer as Princess Diana in the finest season of Netflix’s lavish show
Earlier this week, the Daily Mail quoted multiple people directly associated with the royal family as expressing their dissatisfaction with the show. One of Charles’ friends told the Mail that the series is ‘dragging up things that happened during very difficult times 25 or 30 years ago without a thought for anyone’s feelings’. “This is trolling with a Hollywood budget,” the person said.
Meanwhile, Prince William is said to have told a friend that his parents are ‘being exploited and presented in a false, simplistic way to make money’. The Sun quoted a source as saying, “His Royal Highness has absolutely no views about it. He has never watched The Crown.”
There is also said to be concern surrounding Harry and Meghan’s recent overall production deal with Netflix — the streaming service that produces The Crown. The series charts the rein of Queen Elizabeth II, portrayed in seasons one and two by Claire Foy, and in seasons three and four by Olivia Colman. Colman had previously said that Prince William told her that he doesn’t watch the show.
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