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Imelda Staunton to Replace Olivia Colman As Queen in the 5th and Final Season of The Crown

The Crown, Netflix’s lavish drama about the life and times of Queen Elizabeth II, will close out its critically acclaimed run after its fifth season.

Apparently, the show was originally intended to run through season 6, but showrunner Peter Morgan feels like it’s approaching a pretty solid stopping point.

So far, the Queen has been played by two actors: Claire Foy in seasons 1 and 2, when the Queen was younger; and Olivia Colman in season 3, as she reaches middle age. Colman will return to play the monarch in season 4, but in season 5, actor Imelda Staunton will take over the role.

“I’m absolutely thrilled to confirm Imelda Staunton as Her Majesty The Queen for the fifth and final season, taking The Crown into the 21st century. Imelda is an astonishing talent and will be a fantastic successor to Claire Foy and Olivia Colman,” added Morgan.

Staunton said, “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 honored to be joining such an exceptional creative team and to be taking The Crown to its conclusion.”

"Downton Abbey" Red Carpet - 14th Rome Film Fest 2019
Imelda Staunton attends the “Downton Abbey” red carpet during the 14th Rome Film Festival on October 19, 2019 in Rome, Italy. (Photo by Vittorio Zunino Celotto/Getty Images for RFF)

Production on the fourth season is currently underway. The series tells the inside story of Queen Elizabeth II’s reign, as the fragile social order established after the Second World War breaks apart.

Show creator Peter Morgan did tease that the final season would take the show into the 21st century, but he gave no hint as to where he planning on ending the series.

Netflix vice president of original content Cindy Holland said she expected The Crown’s upcoming fourth season to build on its success.

“I fully support Peter Morgan’s creative decision,” she said, “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.”

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