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The Crown season 4: everything you need to know about the new series

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Lauren Geall
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Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II in Netflix's The Crown

In a recent interview, The Crown’s creator Peter Morgan confirmed that season four will land on Netflix in November. Fans will be delighted to learn that an exact release date has now been announced. Here is everything we know about the new series. 

Updated 21 August: Less than 24 hours after announcing the fourth season of The Crown will be coming to Netflix in November, a release date has now been confirmed. The official Twitter account for the series has shared the news that it will return on 15 November, along with a new trailer. 

And that’s not the only thing for fans to get excited about. A first-look photograph of Princess Diana, played by Emma Corrin, wearing her wedding gown, has also been released. 

The Crown: Princess Diana
The Crown season 4: first-look at Princess Diana's wedding gown.

Updated 20 August: The Crown’s creator Peter Morgan has confirmed that the fourth season of the show will land on Netflix in November despite delays caused by the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Morgan revealed that the cast had returned to set earlier than most TV shows to ensure they met their scheduled release date.

“In order to hit the release schedule for season four, we needed to start editing and lock episodes, which we’ve been doing throughout this time,” he said. “Everything takes much longer under these new social distancing regulations and rules, [even postproduction]. So if we’d, for example, waited until next month, when a number of people are starting to film again in late August, beginning of September, to pick up these extra scenes, I think a) everyone would have been out of the rhythm of it and it would have felt very strange, and b) I think it would have compromised our post schedule.

“We had to weigh up, ‘Is it worth it or not?’ And, actually, that we’re still able to hit our release schedule in November for seasonal four has been worth it.”

So what can we expect from the hotly-anticipated fourth instalment of The Crown? Here’s everything we know so far.

As reported on 5 February: Whether it’s a new article “exposing” Meghan Markle’s not-so-secret past, or a look at Kate Middleton’s latest red-carpet style, the stories we see in the press make one thing very clear: the world is completely obsessed with the British Royal Family. Combine that with a star-studded cast, some pretty fabulous costumes and a handful of standout locations, and you’ve got a winning equation in the form of Netflix’s The Crown.

While it was recently announced that the award-winning drama, which first aired in 2016, would end after five seasons (it was originally planned to be six), the third season of The Crown only landed on Netflix at the end of last year, so we still have two more seasons to enjoy. 

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The fourth season – which has a predicted release date of November or December 2020 – will see Olivia Colman reprise her role as Queen Elizabeth II for the final time (it was recently announced that Imelda Staunton will take over the role for the show’s fifth and final season). And with season three ending in 1977, season four will see Margaret Thatcher and Princess Diana enter the picture.

So, without further ado, here’s everything we know so far about The Crown season four. 

Who will star in The Crown season four?

Last year we heard the (very exciting) news that Gillian Anderson would be taking on the role of the UK’s first female Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher.

“I am so excited to be joining the cast and crew of The Crown and to have the opportunity to portray such a complicated and controversial woman,” Anderson said at the time. “Thatcher was undoubtedly formidable but I am relishing exploring beneath the surface and, dare I say, falling in love with the icon who, whether loved or despised, defined an era.”

And now, brand new pictures of Anderson in character on the set of The Crown season four have taken over the internet. 

It’s safe to say that we’re very excited to see how Anderson takes on Thatcher – especially when it comes to the reportedly frosty relationship between the prime minister and Queen Elizabeth II.

Also joining the cast for season four is Emma Corrin, who has been cast to play Lady Diana Spencer (the future Princess of Wales).

“I have been glued to the show and to think I’m now joining this incredibly talented acting family is surreal,” Corrin said when her casting was announced. “Princess Diana was an icon and her effect on the world remains profound and inspiring. To explore her through Peter Morgan’s writing is the most exceptional opportunity and I will strive to do her justice!”

Pictures of Corrin as Diana have also surfaced online.

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Otherwise, all the main cast from season three will be back for season four, including Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies as Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Phillip.     

What will The Crown season four be about?

Season three of The Crown finishes in 1977, so the fourth season is expected to start at the end of the 70s and work its way through to about 1990.

The plot will definitely focus on the relationship between Queen Elizabeth II and Margaret Thatcher, who was elected as Prime Minister in 1979 and remained in office until 1990. According to The Times, episodes will feature the Queen and Margaret Thatcher’s disagreements over apartheid in South Africa, as well as the 1982 Falklands War.

Of course, we’ve also got the marriage of Princess Diana and Prince Charles in that period (the pair were married in 1981) and could possibly get a glimpse of the beginnings of the relationship between Charles and his future wife Camilla according to Josh O’Connor, who plays Prince Charles on the show. 

Josh O'Connor in The Crown season three
The Crown season four: Josh O'Connor will return as Prince Charles.

“Well, it’s the Diana years, so we know that period well,” he told the PA. “And in terms of Charles himself, if series three was to make people feel empathy and sorry for him, I guess we’re going to pull the rug from under him in the next series.” 

When will season four of The Crown be released?

Lucky for us we may not have to wait long until season four of The Crown lands on our screens, as it’s predicted that the new series will be released on Netflix at the end of the year.

And with filming already well underway, we’ve got our fingers crossed that it won’t be long until we learn more about the new season. We haven’t got a trailer just yet, but we’re keeping our eyes peeled for more information. 

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