Meet the New Cast of The Crown's Third Season
If you know anything about The Crown’s third season, you likely know that it will feature an (almost) entirely different cast, with Claire Foy, Matt Smith & co. passing on the royal torch to a new ensemble. Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies will be taking over the lead roles, but that’s just the tip of the casting iceberg. Here’s your full guide to the new actors of The Crown season three.
Olivia Colman as Queen Elizabeth II
The Role: Queen Elizabeth has been Queen of the United Kingdom and the Commonwealth nations since 1952, when she ascended the throne at the age of 25. She is the longest-living and longest-serving British monarch in history, and the longest-reigning current monarch anywhere in the world.
The Actor: Olivia Colman is already well-known for previous roles including Godmother in Fleabag, DS Ellie Miller in Broadchurch, and Queen Anne in The Favourite (for which she won the Best Actress Oscar last year). She takes over the role of Queen Elizabeth II from Claire Foy this season.
Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret
The Role: Princess Margaret was Queen Elizabeth’s younger sister. After being famously forbidden to marry her first love Peter Townsend (because he had been previously married), she married society photographer Antony Armstrong Jones, and the couple stayed together for 18 tumultuous years.
The Actor: Helena Bonham Carter is widely known for a number of roles including Bellatrix Lestrange in the Harry Potter movies, Marla Singer in Fight Club, and Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother in The King's Speech. She takes over the role of Princess Margaret from Vanessa Kirby this season.
Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles
The Role: Prince Charles is the eldest child of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip, and first in line to the British throne. He has been married twice, first to Princess Diana and later to Camilla Parker Bowles. Season three of The Crown will follow his years as a student at Cambridge, his investiture as Prince of Wales, and his early courtship with Camilla.
The Actor: O’Connor’s past TV roles include The Durrells, Peaky Blinders and the BBC adaptation of Les Misérables (which also featured Erin Doherty, aka the new Princess Anne] He takes over the role of Charles from Julian Baring this season.
Erin Doherty as Princess Anne
The Role: Princess Anne is the second child, and only daughter, of Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip. Born in 1950, she is known as a skilled equestrian, and in 1976 became the first member of the British royal family to compete in the Olympic Games.
The Actor: Doherty is a relative newcomer, having made her screen debut in 2017 on an episode of Call the Midwife—but she’s such a standout in The Crown that you should expect to see a lot more of her.
Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip
The Role: Prince Philip, the Duke of Edinburgh, is Queen Elizabeth’s husband. The couple married in 1947, five years before Elizabeth ascended the throne. Born into Greek and Danish royalty, Philip abandoned both titles to become a naturalized British citizen prior to their wedding.
The Actor: Tobias Menzies is best known for playing the dual role of Frank Randall and Jack Randall in Outlander, and Edmure Tully in Game of Thrones. He takes over the role of Prince Philip from Matt Smith this season.
Ben Daniels as Antony Armstrong Jones
The Role: Antony Armstrong Jones, aka Lord Snowdon, was a British society photographer and the husband of Princess Margaret. The Crown season three will depict the ugly decline of Antony and Margaret’s already tumultuous relationship, and possibly the couple’s separation in 1976.
The Actor: Daniels is a stage and screen actor whose notable previous projects include Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Law & Order: UK, and House of Cards. He takes over the role of Lord Snowdon from Matthew Goode.
Jason Watkins as Harold Wilson
The Role: Harold Wilson became the British prime minister in 1964, and remained in office until 1970; he later served a second term between 1974 and 1976. Wilson was the first Labour prime minister after several Conservative PMs in a row, and has been described both as a centrist and a moderate socialist. He resigned as prime minister in 1976, and the Queen and Prince Philip attended a farewell dinner for him at 10 Downing Street.
The Actor: Watkins’s prior TV roles include Being Human, Taboo, The Hollow Crown, and A Very English Scandal.
Charles Dance as Louis Mountbatten
The Role: Louis Francis Albert Victor Nicholas Mountbatten was Prince Philip’s uncle and Prince Charles’s great uncle. In the show, Mountbatten is a mentor to Charles and helps him to navigate the demands of royal life as second-in-line to the throne.
The Actor: Dance is best known to American audiences for his role as Tywin Lannister in Game of Thrones. He replaces Greg Wise in the role of Mountbatten this season.
Emerald Fennell as Camilla Shand
The Role: Camilla, Duchess of Cornwall is the second wife of Prince Charles. As The Crown season three will depict, Camilla and Charles met in the early 1970s and were romantically involved before either of their first marriages—Charles went on to marry Diana Spencer, while Camilla married Andrew Parker Bowles (who had previously dated Princess Anne). Charles and Camilla married in 2005.
Marion Bailey as Queen Elizabeth, the Queen Mother
The Role: Elizabeth Angela Marguerite Bowes-Lyon is the mother of Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret. After the ascension of her husband King George VI in 1936, she was Queen consort of the United Kingdom, and following his death became known as The Queen Mother.
The Actor: Bailey is a British actress widely known for her work with acclaimed director Mike Leigh, who is her longtime partner; she’s appeared in a number of his films including Meantime, Vera Drake, and Mr Turner. Bailey takes over the role of the Queen Mother from Victoria Hamilton this season.
Derek Jacobi as the Duke of Windsor
The Role: The Duke of Windsor, aka King Edward VIII, is renowned for abdicating the throne in 1936 in order to marry Wallis Simpson, an American divorcée. Since season three covers the early 1970s, it is likely to depict Edward’s death from cancer in 1972.
The actor: Jacobi is a renowned British theater actor whose film work includes Gladiator, Gosford Park, and—ironically—The King’s Speech, which follows King George VI’s ascension to the throne after his brother Edward’s abdication. Jacobi replaces Alex Jennings in the role of the Duke of Windsor this season.
*This story originally appeared on Townandcountrymag.com
*Minor edits have been made by the Townandcountry.ph editors