Netflix has confirmed that The Crown will wrap up after five seasons, which is one season earlier than expected.
In an announcement today, fans also learned that veteran actress Imelda Stauton will take over the role of Queen Elizabeth when Olivia Colman finishes playing the monarch at the end of season four. Unlike Colman and her predecessor Claire Foy, Staunton will only be staying around for one series with the show set to wrap up after five seasons instead of the intended six.
News: Imelda Staunton (!) will play Queen Elizabeth II (!!) in the fifth and final season of The Crown (!!!) pic.twitter.com/WFD8x6vMMU
— Netflix UK & Ireland (@NetflixUK) January 31, 2020
The news was announced on Twitter with Imelda Staunton quoted as saying: 'I have loved watching The Crown from the very start. 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 the taking The Crown to its conclusion.'
The Crown has been a major success for Netflix ever since the first series was released in November 2016. Originally, it was intended that actors playing the royals would be replaced every two seasons, to mark the family's journey through the second half of the 20th century. However, it now seems that the last batch of performers will only get one season to strut their stuff.
Fans were introduced to Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth and Tobias Menzies, who replaced Matt Smith as Prince Philip, when the third season was released just before Christmas.