The fourth season of Netflix’s Emmy-winning series The Crown has come under fire from the UK government. According to Deadline, UK officials have called for the streaming service to add a disclaimer alerting viewers that the events depicted have been fictionalized. These requests have come from individuals representing both the Royal family and the family of the late Princess Diana.
According to Deadline, the series has implemented advisory messages concerning scenes that depict Diana’s struggle with bulimia, but the recent calls from culture secretary Oliver Dowden want things taken a bit further.
“It’s a beautifully produced work of fiction, so as with other TV productions, Netflix should be very clear at the beginning it is just that,” Dowden said in an interview with The Mail, according to Deadline. “Without this, I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact,” Dowden said via Deadline. He intends to write a formal letter to Netflix this week addressing what he sites as falsehoods.
In addition to Dowden’s concerns, the series has heard from other parties weary about inaccuracies within the show. According to Deadline, the Australian Broadcasting Company (ABC) spoke out about alleged fabrications regarding words said by the actor portraying the continent’s former prime minister, Bob Hawke. The scene in question shows Hawke speaking about the royal family in an interview with the news talk show 4 Corners. In his candid remarks, he admits reservations about the family. The show has Hawke call Queen Elizabeth, depicted by Olivia Coleman (The Favourite, Fleabag) a “pig.” Those words regarding the Queen were never spoken.
According to Deadline, the portrayal of Princess Diana, played by Emma Corrin (Pennyworth, Alex’s Dream), has stirred vocal objection from her brother, Charles Spencer. He spoke about the misconceptions during an interview with ITV.
“Americans tell me they have watched The Crown as if they have taken a history lesson. Well, they haven’t,” Spencer said via Deadline. “It is very hard, there is a lot of conjecture and a lot of invention, isn’t there? You can hang it on fact but the bits in between are not fact,” Spencer stated via Deadline.l
The Crown’s fourth season debuted November 15, exploring the British monarchy in the late 1970s and 80s. Highlights of this season focus on the country’s first female prime minister Margaret Thatcher, played by Gillian Anderson (Sex Education, The X-Files); and, the rigid beginnings of Prince Charles and Princess Diana’s romance. The Crown is written by showrunner Peter Morgan (The Queen, Frost/Nixon).