The Final Season of ‘The Crown’ Was Just Announced and It Officially Includes a ‘Harry Potter’ Actress

One of the most successful shows on Netflix is The Crown. Its in-depth look at the current royal family has earned it several nominations and awards, including Emmys, Golden Globes, and SAG awards. It has a unique concept of switching actors every two seasons, time-jumping to different stages of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign. However, the showrunner just announced the end of the series and final actress to portray the monarch. And it’ll be the shortest amount of time an actress has stepped into the role. 

Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II in Season 3 of 'The Crown.'
Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II in Season 3 of ‘The Crown’ | Des Willie/Netflix

Season 5 is the “perfect time” to end the critically-acclaimed series 

According to Deadline, creator and showrunner for The Crown Peter Morgan announced on Jan. 31 that Season 5 will be the final season for the series. The show is currently filming Season 4, but he stated that when writing Season 5, it “became clear… that this is the perfect time and place to stop. I’m grateful to Netflix and Sony for supporting me in this decision.”

The site wrote that Morgan had wanted to go to six seasons, but that’s not the case anymore. Cindy Holland, who is the vice president of Original Content at Netflix, also said, “The first three seasons of The Crown defined an era, and I know the upcoming fourth season will build further on that success.” She continued, “It’s a stunning example of award-winning entertainment, created in the UK and loved by millions of fans around the world. I fully support Peter Morgan’s creative decision and am excited to see how he, Imelda Staunton and the cast and crew of Season 5, bring this landmark series to a fitting and spectacular end.”

Imelda Staunton (aka Dolores Umbridge) will be the last actress to play Queen Elizabeth II

Seasons 1 and 2 brought on Claire Foy as the monarch before and during her first years as Queen of England. It highlighted the struggle of losing her beloved father, King George VI (portrayed by Jared Harris), and also marital obstacles with Prince Philip (portrayed by Matt Smith). Season 3 and the upcoming Season 4 saw the first change in cast. Olivia Colman took the reins as the Queen, with Tobias Menzies taking over as Philip, and Helena Bonham-Carter coming in as her sister Margaret (portrayed by Vanessa Kirby in Seasons 1 and 2). 

Imelda Staunton at the 'Downton Abbey' red carpet at the 14th Rome Film Festival.
Imelda Staunton at the ‘Downton Abbey’ red carpet at the 14th Rome Film Festival | Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images for RFF

There had been rumors that Staunton would come on as the next Queen Elizabeth II, and now that it’s confirmed, she’ll be the last. The Harry Potter alum will take on the role for only one season. Morgan told Deadline that he’s “thrilled” to bring her in to take the show “into the 21st century” in its storylines. 

Staunton also released a statement to Deadline. “I have loved watching The Crown from the very start,” she said. “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.”

‘The Crown’ could bring in Prince William and Prince Harry, but probably not Meghan Markle 

The recent dramas surrounding the real-life royal family — from Prince Andrew’s connection to convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein to Prince Harry and Meghan Markle leaving their royal duties — got some fans excited to see it portrayed on The Crown. However, with Season 5 as the last season, viewers won’t get that chance. 

However, considering the final season will go into the 2000s and Season 4 will focus a lot on Prince Charles and Lady Diana, Prince William and Prince Harry are bound to make an appearance as well. 

Prince Harry even recently joked about the show, saying he’d put an end to them focusing on his life. Angela Levin, the Duke of Sussex’s royal biographer, told BBC what Prince Harry had to say about the show. “Harry, when I went to interview him in the Palace, the first thing he said to me when he shook my hand was, ‘Are you watching The Crown?’” she said. “And I hadn’t been at the time, I felt very embarrassed and I got it and he said, ‘I’m going to make sure I stop it before they get to me.’”

Regardless of what the final two seasons are going to cover, they have a lot of material to work with.