The creator of “The Crown” has hit back at criticism of the upcoming new season, insisting he has “enormous sympathy” for the new monarch, King Charles III.
Due to premiere on Netflix on November 9, the fifth season of the hit drama tackles the divorce of the then-Prince and Princess of Wales – as portrayed by Dominic West and Emma Debicki.
The show, which won the award for outstanding drama series at last year’s Emmy awards, has encountered some criticism for its portrayal of the royals.
Now Peter Morgan, the show’s creator, has responded in comments given to Variety. He said: “I think we must all accept that the 1990s was a difficult time for the royal family, and King Charles will almost certainly have some painful memories of that period.
“But that doesn’t mean that, with the benefit of hindsight, history will be unkind to him, or the monarchy. The show certainly isn’t. I have enormous sympathy for a man in his position – indeed, a family in their position. People are more understanding and compassionate than we expect sometimes.”
West and Debicki have also spoken out in defense of program makers, who they believe dealt with the subject matter sensitively.
Debicki – who takes over the role from Emma Corrin – said to Variety: “Peter and the entire crew of this job do their utmost to really handle everything with such sensitivity and truth and complexity, as do actors.
“The amount of research and care and conversations and dialogue that happen over, from a viewer’s perspective, something probably that you would never ever notice is just immense. From that very first meeting [with] Peter, I knew that I’d entered into this space where this was taken seriously [in] a deeply caring way. So that’s my experience of the show.”
West, who takes over from Josh O’Connor, described telling the story of the difficult period as a “heavy, heavy responsibility … and something I think we all take pretty seriously.”
The comments from Morgan and his cast come days after Netflix defended the show as a “fictional dramatization,” after former British Prime Minister John Major slammed its depictions of his time in office as “damaging and malicious fiction” and a “barrel-load of nonsense.”