The Crown Facts You Probably Didn’t Know About
“The Crown” Netflix series follows the life of Queen Elizabeth II and all the events that happened in her political and private life. The show made a huge success for depicting the drama Queen Elizabeth faces in a changing world.
But, apart from being inspired by true stories of the royal family, there are plenty of other things that make this show very special. One of the most interesting is that Queen Elizabeth actually saw the show and had something to say that the director didn’t expect. Let’s dive into the most interesting fun facts about this Netflix historical drama.
1. The Corset Help
In Season 1 Claire Foy played the role of Queen Elizabeth in a corset. She described wearing this undergarment as very uncomfortable, but that it ended up helping her with getting into her role.
Foy just had a baby before the series filming started, so she also had to wear it in order to make her figure look slimmer. She said that she didn’t continue on wearing it in the following season, but the corset helped her maintaining the royal, lady-like posture.
2. Pretty Penny
The show required a lot of work. Not only did they have to pay huge, royal-looking palaces to film the scenes, but the producers also had horses and animals on set which meant there were entire crews that would ensure everything will go according to the plans.
Taking into account the number of actors, the places of filming as well as their costumes, someone would definitely expect this show to be quite expensive. And it is true – according to BBC, the first two seasons cost $130 million!
3. New Records
But it seems that its cost paid off because the show got very popular. Although Netflix doesn’t like to reveal the viewing numbers of a series, they described The Crown as “very popular”.
The show beat out major hits like Breaking Bad, Orange Is The New Black and Gilmore Girls. Doesn’t seem really bad at all! After all, beating Breaking Bad sounds like a really difficult task to accomplish.
4. Making Of The Costumes
The costumes appearing in the show weren’t all made especially for the show. Some of them were rare vintage finds that reflected well the royal level of beauty. Each actor had to go through the fittings and elaborate conversation about their role in order to make the best possible result.
But what the designers had a focus on was, of course, the clothes of Queen Elizabeth. Season 1 costume designer Michele Clapton described making the queen’s wedding gown as the most elaborate and time-consuming costume of all. However, they thought Queen’s private clothes should be kept quite simple as they believed it suited her personality the best.
5. Cast Audition Fun Facts
There are quite a few interesting facts about the auditions for the role of Queen Elizabeth II. Felicity Jones was among the actresses that auditioned to play the main role of the series. And what’s even more surprising is that Claire Foy almost got turned down for the role!
It took the creator of the show, Peter Morgan, four readings on auditions in order to finally notice Claire. The first three times he was interested in other actresses and did not even pay attention to Foy. Peter said that only at the fourth time he found Claire Foy to be very queen-like and the best choice for the leading role.
6. Corgis And Cheddar
Everybody knows Corgis as royal pets of Queen Elizabeth, so, obviously, they had to include some corgis in the show too. It seems that they became real breakout stars of the show and made their human co-stars laugh quite a lot during filming.
Claire Foy told Vanity Fair: “Oh my god—the corgis. I’m not much of a dog person, to be perfectly frank. I really loved them, but they’re just, in general…the corgis are odd. They love cheese, like cheddar cheese.” The leading actress found it to be quite creepy that these dogs would it so much cheddar cheese on a daily basis.
7. Near Death Experience
Matt Smith played the part of Prince Phillip in The Crown. He had to wear a wig in order to play the fair-haired prince, however, this wasn’t the craziest thing about this role. Smith said in an interview on The Graham Norton Show that he almost died on set while filming a scene with horses.
“These horses were being a bit frisky,” he said. “We were meant to get on them and trot off and have this lovely love scene, which didn’t even make the cut. In my stupidity, I got on the horse and cantered around and then it just went. I tried to grab a branch and everyone was shouting, ‘Oh my God, don’t grab the branch!’ So I went under the branch and then down a ravine. I was so scared. As it galloped towards a herd of zebra, a huge man grabbed it by the reins and saved my life.”
8. Playing The Best Churchill
John Lithgow didn’t seem like a great fit for the role of Churchill, not only for the audiences but for the actor himself. He thought that they got the wrong guy and was intimidated by the role. However, he accepted it and made another great performance that left people in awe.
His portrayal of Prime Minister Winston Churchill even won him an Emmy. In order to perfect his performance, John Lithgow had to use some unusual tactics. He stuffed cotton in his nose so that he would mimic better Churchill’s nasally voice.
9. No Buckingham Palace
But the entire show was never filmed in the actual Buckingham Palace. It would be a bit too good to be true, right? Instead, they recreated the Palace by filming in other royal Palaces around Britain and needed a profound research in order to find them.
No actual Windsor artifacts were used, but they had to create props that would resemble highly to the real items. The production designer Martin Childs, however, loves hearing that some people think these props are real.
10. Prince Philip Wasn’t Interested in The Series
Matt Smith who plays Prince Philip in the series said he had heard some gossip that Prince Philip has not seen the show. There’s even a story about the conversation between Smith’s friend and the monarch.
Reportedly, the actor’s friend asked: “Philip, I’m just wondering, because I have some friends who made The Crown, have you watched any?” Philip just answered: “Don’t. Be. Ridiculous.”
11. The Queen About The First Season
The Daily Express reported that Queen Elizabeth II actually saw the first season of the Crown in May 2017. According to this source, she watched it with her third son Prince Edward, the Earl of Essex, and his wife, Sophie, the Countess of Wessex.
Although she claimed she really liked it she had some critiques too. Reportedly, she thought that some depictions of events the series chose to put in front of the cameras were too heavily dramatized. She didn’t suggest which ones were these, but we could probably take a few wild guesses.
12. “The Crown” And Disco
Last day on set was celebrated in a way nobody expected it. The cinematographer of the series, Adriano Goldman, wanted to surprise the cast and make a huge party where they were filming.
He asked all the electricians to put multi-colored lights around the Palace, and as soon as Claire Foy and Vanessa Kirby finished their scene, the whole set turned into a disco and everyone started dancing!
13. The Shy Creator
Although this is Peter Morgans second project of portraying Queen Elizabeth II through his fictional versions (the first one being the movie “The Queen” starring Helen Mirren), he still has no interest in meeting the real queen in person.
In an interview for Radio Times, he said: “I hope never to meet her. I’ve spent so long thinking and writing about the woman it would feel unnatural and uncomfortable. I’d just be embarrassed.”