The Netflix drama series The Crown is having just as much drama off-screen as it has on. In the ongoing controversy surrounding the depiction of Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s marriage in the fourth season, one of the series stars, Helena Bonham Carter (The King’s Speech), is speaking out via The Hollywood Reporter.
Carter portrayed Princess Margaret in seasons three and four, sister to Queen Elizabeth ll. Since the release of the fourth season on November 15, The Crown has received backlash from the UK government, royal family historians, and members of the British press regarding the depiction of how Prince Charles treats his wife, Princess Diana. Prince Charles is painted in a negative light, and the backlash from Britain is only gaining speed. Actress Emma Corrin (Pennyworth) portrays the young Diana and Josh O’ Connor (God’s Own Country) portrays Prince Charles.
This past weekend, the controversy was sparked even further when U.K Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden called out the Netflix series and asked them to put out a disclaimer at the start of each episode that states The Crown is a work of fiction. He expressed concern, worried that younger viewers who were not alive at the time these events took place would not know it’s been dramatized for television. Former Royal Press Secretary Dickie Arbiter also criticized the series, insinuating that The Crown amped up the conflict between Prince Charles and Princess Diana for mere entertainment and made Prince Charles out to be the bad guy.
Now, Carter is adding flame to the fire by calling for the producers of the series to put out a disclaimer telling viewers The Crown is a work of fiction. She gave her opinion on The Crown:The Official Podcast and her statement was picked up by The Hollywood Reporter:“ It is dramatized…I do feel very strongly, because I think we have a moral responsibility to say, ‘Hang on guys, this is not… it’s not a drama-doc, we’re making a drama.’ So they are two different entities.”
But, social media is playing devil’s advocate by calling out the British press, Dowden, and several others for overreacting. Fans of the series took to Twitter to say it’s ridiculous and unnecessary to have a fictionalized TV drama warn viewers that what they’re about to watch is fiction. Several accounts have also pointed out there were no complaints from the UK government or British press regarding the first three seasons when the royal family was painted in a more positive light.
Netflix has made no statements or comments as of yet regarding if they will be putting out a disclaimer stating that The Crown is a work of fiction.