Has The Crown Finally Cast Its Young Prince Charles For Season Three?

josh oconnor

by Katie Rosseinsky |

With Olivia Colman set to follow in Claire Foy’s footsteps as Queen Elizabeth, Helena Bonham Carter finally confirmed as Princess Margaret and Tobias Menzies taking on the role of Prince Philip, season three of The Crown – which is slated to arrive on Netflix some time in 2019 – is shaping up nicely. Now that the show’s elder generation of Windsors has been announced, the show’s casting directors are turning their attention to filling the roles of the younger royals, with British actor Josh O’Connor reportedly set to star as a young Prince Charles.

The 28 year old star, who was nominated for BAFTA’s prestigious EE Rising Star award back in February, appeared in last year’s indie hit God’s Own Country but is perhaps best known for his role in ITV’s cosy Sunday night drama The Durrells. He’ll next be seen in the BBC’s forthcoming adaptation of Victor Hugo’s Les Miserables, in which he’ll take the part of Marius.

Netflix is yet to confirm this casting rumour, and the streaming service could certainly leave us waiting a while before they do so: after all, whispers that Helena Bonham Carter would be succeeding Vanessa Kirby as the show’s Princess Margaret first emerged back in January, but weren’t addressed Netflix until earlier this month. The show’s producers have also since confirmed that Jason Watkins will join The Crown as Prime Minister Harold Wilson.

Given that season three will be set between 1964 and 1970, we can deduce that Josh would first play the heir to the throne between the ages of 16 and 22, before presumably taking the character into his thirties for the fourth season, which is predicted to deal with Charles’ tumultuous marriage to Diana, Princess of Wales.

While Lady Diana Spencer won’t feature in the show’s third season, a young Camilla Parker Bowles certainly will. We can’t wait to see which actress might star opposite O’Connor as the future Duchess of Cornwall...

Read on for everything we know so far about The Crown: Season Three...

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The Crown S3 - Grazia

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Season two closed in 1964, concluding with the birth of Elizabeth and Philip's youngest child, Prince Edward. The show's third round should pick up shortly after, with a storyline that will carry us through Harold Wilson's turbulent tenure as Prime Minister, which saw the UK gripped by economic crises and industrial strikes..

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Tearing through a decade or so in just ten episodes, The Crown's characters are ageing at such a rate that the actors playing them just can't keep up. So, in the interests of verisimilitude (prosthetics and CGI trickery can, after all, only go so far) season three will inaugurate a fresh line-up of stars. While we're sad to wave goodbye to Claire Foy, Matt Smith and co, the promise of an entirely new cast is certainly one that'll keep us talking.

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The first of these new cast members to be announced was Olivia Colman, who'll be stepping into the Queen's sturdy patent courts as The Crown moves through the Seventies and beyond. As one of Britain's best-loved (and most versatile) actresses (who this year earned her first Oscar for Best Actress in _The Favourite), s_he'll be joined by Helena Bonham-Carter, who'll embody Princess Margaret in her most turbulent years, while Tobias Menzies will be Matt Smith's replacement as Prince Philip. Newly announced as an addition to the cast is Ben Smith, who will play Anthony Armstrong-Jones opposite Helena's Princess Margaret.

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There were three people in this marriage, after all: season three will also mark Camilla Parker-Bowles' Crown debut. Charles and Camilla (née Shand) met and fell in love in the early Seventies, when they were part of the same posh countryside set. At the time, neither party was prepared to fully commit: Charles to a woman who didn't quite fit the mould required by the palace, Camilla to a life of royal rules and regulations.

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It's been confirmed that Josh O'Connor, one of this year's nominees for the prestigious EE BAFTA Rising Star award, is set to play a young Prince Charles for seasons three and four (you might recognise from God's Own Country or ITV's The Durrells). In the announcement he said: 'I am thrilled to be joining The Firm for the next instalment of The Crown. Seasons 3 and 4 will follow some of the most turbulent events in the Prince of Wales's life and our national story and I'm excited to be bringing to life the man in the midst of it all. I'm very aware it's a formidably talented family to be joining, but reliably informed I have the ears for the part and will fit right in.'

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Meanwhile Emerald Fennel (Who was previously cast in call the Midwife and is stepping into Phoebe Waller-Bridges shoes as the screenwriter for season two of Killing Eve)has been cast as Camilla Parker-Bowles. Spotted filming new scenes in Pimlico, Central London, where Camilla lived when she first met Charles in 1970, Emerald said:'I absolutely love Camilla and am grateful that my teenage years have well prepared me for playing a chain-smoking serial snogger with a pudding-bowl haircut.'

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He might be the heir to the throne, but it's not all about Prince Charles in season three: writer Peter Morgan has hinted that the Queen's only daughter, Princess Anne, could have some pivotal plotlines, involving her romance with first husband Captain Mark Phillips and the 1974 kidnap attempt outside Buckingham Palace. She'll be played by Erin Doherty, whose sole TV credit to date came in an episode of Call The Midwife last year.

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Gillian Anderson has been cast as Margaret Thatcher, and will appear in season four. As Thatcher was elected in 1979 following tense political times with IRA bombings and increasing public animosity, her role could come into play at the end of the series, potentially bring a mind-blowing explosive finale.

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Best known for her roles in Mr Turner and Vera Drake actress Marion Bailey will be taking over from Victoria Hamilton to take on the role of Queen Mother. Here enthusiasm at joining The Crown cast echoed many of the other new additions. She said: 'It's a brilliant show and we have a tough act to follow but what a gift to be playing the fascinating and greatly loved Queen Mother.'

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Peter Morgan, the show's creator, recently revealed that the next two seasons will be shot consecutively. 'We're doing them back-to-back. I'm writing them all at the moment,' he told the audience at a BAFTA Masterclass event.

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After teasing us with hints to the contrary, the show's producers have finally confirmed that we won't be introduced to Lady Diana Spencer in season three (despite the fact that the future Princess of Wales first met her husband-to-be aged just 16, when he was dating her older sister, Sarah) Whichever actress lands the coveted role will go on to take centre stage in season four, as the show starts to document her tumultuous marriage to Prince Charles; there are also rumours that the star could stay on into the fifth season. Let the casting speculation commenceu2026

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We could trawl through the history books to pick out potential plot points for season three, one storyline which we can count upon is the disintegration of Princess Margaret's marriage to photographer Anthony Armstrong-Jones. 'We'll see the break-up of this extraordinary marriage between Margaret and [Lord] Snowdon, historical consultant Robert Lacey told Town & Country last year. The couple were married for the best part of two decades, eventually separating in 1976 and formally divorcing two years later, with multiple infidelities on both sides.

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Last year, the show's producers applied for permission to carry out new building work at the show's Elstree base, which has now received a green light from the relevant authorities. This means Buckingham Palace will get new gates and a balcony that's primed for royal waves (does this mean a wedding tableau?), while Downing Street will also be extended.

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