Sunday, May 26, 2024

Ted Sarandos calls The Crown crown jewel, says it’s a dramatisation of the Royal Family

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The cast and crew of The Crown were joined by Netflix head Ted Sarandos in London for the show’s Season 5 premiere.Before the screening started, Sarandos took to the stage at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane in central London on Tuesday evening to introduce the new season. During his speech, Sarandos called the series the “crown jewel” in Netflix’s original series catalogue, reports ‘Variety’.

“This really has been and continues to be the highlight of my personal and professional life,” Sarandos said of the show. “And I’m incredibly in awe with (Peter Morgan’s) vision and with his writing. And I am incredibly, incredibly grateful for your friendship. Peter, thank you so much.”

Sarandos also took the opportunity to remind the audience the show is a  “dramatisation” of the Royal Family’s life. There has been much debate in the UK about how much of the show is fictionalised and whether it should carry a disclaimer so as not to confuse audiences, with actor Judi Dench even accusing the series of “crude sensationalism” in an open letter to the Times.

Jonny Lee Miller, Imelda Staunton, Dominic West, Elizabeth Debicki, Jonathan Pryce and Lesley Manville were also in attendance, joining Morgan on stage despite being right in the middle of filming the sixth (and supposedly final) season.

“I’m leaving in five,” admitted Staunton, who plays Queen Elizabeth II. “I’m back to work tomorrow.”Morgan added, “We’re filming in the morning. We’ve been filming for 10 weeks I think. Another 30 to go.”

For Pryce, who takes over the role of the Queen’s husband Prince Philip, the theater brought back memories of the West End premiere of Miss Saigon, which had opened at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane in 1989, with Pryce playing the Engineer.

“It’s great being back in Drury Lane where I was 32 years ago for the opening of Miss Saigon,” he said, revealing that at the same time he had been performing on stage Miller had been working as a clerk in the same building.

“In the auditorium, selling programs and ice cream, was Jonny Lee Miller,” Pryce said to cheers from the audience.Miller plays former British Prime Minister John Major in the latest season of the Netflix show, which launches on November 9, while West plays Prince Charles, Debicki is Princess Diana and Manville plays the Queen’s sister Princess Margaret.They replace the previous cast, which included Olivia Colman as the Queen, Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip and Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret, who played the characters for the previous two seasons.The current cast will remain with the show for its sixth season.

Along with Sarandos, another red carpet surprise arrived in the form of Gillian Anderson, despite the fact she doesn’t appear in the current season.Anderson played former Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in Season 4 and was previously reported to be in a relationship with The Crown showrunner Morgan.

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