Netflix: ‘We have every confidence’ that members know ‘The Crown’ is a work of fiction

The Crown S4

Netflix dropped their fourth season of The Crown on November 15th. So it’s been three full weeks since people began watching Peter Morgan’s dramatization of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer’s courtship and marriage, and the disintegration of the Wales marriage. In those three weeks, the hissy fit coming out of Clarence House has been unparalleled. Charles launched a full-on hate campaign the same weekend The Crown dropped, and he’s pulled in royal commentators, media experts, historians and even British government officials, all to nitpick The Crown and Morgan’s (admittedly) Diana-sympathetic dramatization of events. Again, no one is saying that everything in The Crown is exactly what happened. What we’ve always said is that The Crown has gotten the broad strokes right, and Morgan even makes the Windsors somewhat sympathetic at times. Diana was treated horribly. That’s a fact.

What we’ve also enjoyed seeing is Netflix’s happiness with all of the free publicity they’re getting. To Netflix’s credit, at no time have they refused to back Peter Morgan. Netflix, as a corporate entity, is incredibly proud of Peter Morgan’s work and they’re proud to have created this expensive, awards-bait historical soap opera. And Netflix also wants people to know that they are undeterred in the fact of Prince Charles’ hate campaign.

Netflix will not be adding a disclaimer to “The Crown” that states the show is fictionalized, Variety has confirmed.

Last week, U.K. Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden asked that such a label be added to the show in an interview with Daily Mail, citing that he fears “a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact.”

However, Netflix disagrees, and believes that their viewers are aware of its fictionalized nature.

“We have always presented ‘The Crown’ as a drama – and we have every confidence our members understand it’s a work of fiction that’s broadly based on historical events,” a Netflix spokesperson tells Variety. “As a result we have no plans — and see no need — to add a disclaimer.”

Dowden wrote a private letter to Netflix to discuss the matter, which was not made public, and the streamer did respond, though also privately.

[From Variety]

This is where Netflix has so much power, because they’re not f–king beholden to the British establishment for TV licenses or whatever the hell the arrangement is with the BBC. People actually have to subscribe to Netflix, and Netflix isn’t a British company. So Charles and all of his government minister buddies can’t do a damn thing but whine and stomp their feet. And to be fair, Netflix shouldn’t have to put a f–king label on The Crown anyway. Ridiculous.



Photos courtesy of Netflix/The Crown.

You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

41 Responses to “Netflix: ‘We have every confidence’ that members know ‘The Crown’ is a work of fiction”

Comments are Closed

We close comments on older posts to fight comment spam.

  1. Snuffles says:

    I can’t believe Charles keeps doubling and tripling down on this. He’s just digging himself deeper and deeper. More and more people will watch The Crown and the Diana: In Her Own Words.

    The lack of self-awareness and reflection is astounding.

    • PEARL GREY says:

      And I am enjoying every second! “NeVeR cOmpLaiN, nEvEr eXpLaiN” indeed!

      The Montecito royals were “weak, pathetic, whiny, egotistical, mentally unstable” and “censoring the media” when they fought against racist, misogynistic and xenophobic treatment and countless false stories and attacks plastered all over far reaching social media and national newspaper front pages for four years, but Charles can’t handle a dramatisation of what is actually true for five minutes. Let the meltdown continue!

      • T. Tommy Reed says:

        I think one way the press thinks they’re getting away with dragging the Sussexes for defending themselves and not doing the same to Charles et al is that the Sussexes were often speaking up for themselves (the South Africa doc, their website) or had close, non-Royally-adjacent friends doing it (People article). The BRF always use the BM to get their message out and it’s always from a “palace source” so it sounds official.

    • Lou says:

      I am one of those people! Lol. Ever since the backlash from the Royals I decided to start watching The Crown to see why it was getting under their skin so much. I’m loving the series!

  2. Becks1 says:

    Netflix is LOVING this. The total hissy fit over this season that we’ve seen coming from Clarence House over the past three weeks is just drumming up more interest in the Crown. I wouldn’t be surprised if every time there was a story about how ticked Charles is over this season, the streaming numbers go up significantly .

    The royal family and the british government, on the other hand, look completely stupid. People know it’s fiction. We’re not stupid. but we also know that it’s a fictionalized account of real events. Maybe Margaret never went to the Castle of Mey and had a discussion with her mother about the hereditary principle. But we know there were cousins on the Queen Mother’s side who were institutionalized for decades and the family said they were dead. The convo at Castle of Mey isn’t the point. the institutionalization is the point.

    • Eleonor says:

      Especially THIS year.
      I mean with the pandemic all the promotion tour, all the premiers were cancelled, but the BRF and their hissy fit (there must be a tantrum gene in the family) is giving them global attention and for free!

      • Snuffles says:

        Is it a gene or is it “nurtured” into them? That would be a fascinating discussion. I think the heirs were raised to believe that the world should now down at their feet and cater to their every whim. And that is why they throw tantrums when things don’t go their way.

    • Sofia says:

      Oh they absolutely are. It’s been 3 weeks since the show came out and according to my Netflix (I live in the UK) it’s #1 watched show

  3. Myra says:

    LOL, Netflix is so petty and I love it. The same people that have insisted on a stiff upper lip in the face of misogyny and racism for the last three years, have been crying nonstop to Netflix for the past three weeks.

    • Lorelei says:

      @Myra that makes it so much more disgusting and embarrassing. They wanted Meghan to have the stiff upper lip, “never complain,” etc. attitude while REAL newspapers and magazines were running complete lies about her as fact every single day for years on end. Not a peep from them in defense of her.

      The Crown is one show, that’s, what, eight episodes? Ten? And this is the response from the palace. Appalling.

      • Myra says:

        I find their response pretty disgusting, too. It’s clear to me that they were not only racist in their othering of Meghan, but also jealous of her popularity. It’s why the palace did nothing to protect her from the vicious lies of the media but will go out of their way to protect the others from mild criticisms.

  4. Oh_Hey says:

    It’s almost like they can’t help themselves. I’m a young woman that was still a little kid when this happened. The notion that everyone just forgot the 80s and 90s and only gets their info from movies and television is absurd.

    I was alive for the Bashir interview. I was alive when Diana was still alive and talking wild shit about Charles, Camilla, and her own affairs on camera. Also by virtue of having been alive then I’m old enough to o understand fact from fiction and dramatic flair being added for a tv show.
    Charles just keeps digging in his heels and his own grave at the same time.

  5. Kari says:

    I’ll admit I never cared to watch the Crown because the Royal family is like peak racism, privilege and white fragility for me. That being said, Charles made me curious. I binged all of season 4 in a day lol

    • Ann says:

      I held out on watching the The Crown for a long time, partly for these reasons and partly because I think they’re a bore and I do NOT understand the fascination so many of my American fellow citizens/friends have for them. But it was Pandemic time, we were stuck in the house for months (I have a history of asthma, long better/improved but still enough to make me wary), and we binge-watched a lot of things I otherwise never would have seen. But I did think it was very well done, and was particularly excited for S4, which did not disappoint. I’m a few years younger than Diana so I was fairly aware of her journey. Thatcher has always been an interesting character, and I love Gillian Anderson. So S4 was a treat and something of a revelation. And yes, we watched the documentary afterwards. At my husband’s insistence!

  6. yinyang says:

    I don’t have netflix , so I don’t watch this, this girl is obviously very beautiful but her face shape is wrong for Diana, directors rarely get it right, Bonnie Sopher played a good Diana in the later years, but most actresses are a miss eg. Emma Watts. Anyways, I’m glad this show is working the royals up in a frenzy, ha.

    • Nyro says:

      It annoys me how they almost always cast such tiny petite women to play her. She was a tall regal woman. Getting these gamine types to play her takes a lot away from the character and her overall nature.

  7. Harla says:

    Why isn’t the Culture Minister demanding the same from the Mail, the Sun, the Express, etc??? Clean up your own stuff before you start demanding that of others!

  8. Cryptkeeper says:

    Diana was also writing some bizarre comments about Charles ie he wanted her dead in a car accident so he could marry the nanny Tiggy. Though, it’s no wonder. Diana was traumatized and constant surveillance by paps and others brought on some paranoia. Her childhood, her marriage etc…she was treated badly but keep in mind she did embellish and engage too much in self- pity at times.

    • Snuffles says:

      Well, she DID die in a car crash. Charles DID cheat on her with multiple women including Camila. And, according to the royal family, any wife that doesn’t suck it up, shut up and put up with poor treatment and abuse from every angle is “self-pitying”.

    • Tessa says:

      CHarles was the biggest self pitier of them all. His 1994 authorized biography is a catalog of woes and how people did him wrong. He has not changed a bit.

  9. BlondieR says:

    I definitely felt sympathetic towards Charles and Camilla as well as Diana from watching The Crown, especially watching the 3rd season before the 4th. It was a shitty situation all around. But all this BS from the “Firm” is making me lose any sympathy I had for C&C. Good job! 🙄

  10. My3cents says:

    You’d think that with a global pandemic, economic uncertainty and brexit the government and royal family would have more important things to deal with?

  11. Amelie says:

    Win-win for Netflix, right? The more Charles/the BRF complains about The Crown, the more people will watch. I haven’t really watched it that much, just a random episode here and there with friends and family but I’m going to have to sit down and watch all 4 seasons now because all the press has made me curious.

    I view The Crown has a drawn-out biopic, something like Bohemian Rhapsody, Walk the Line, etc. It’s a historical dramatization, but I do not view the whole thing as a work of fiction because it’s not. Sure, most of the scenes between the characters probably didn’t play out that way in real life and it is fictionalized. But they are following a real-life script where they are staying true to the bigger picture.

    Now if you watch The Windsors, which is a parody of the Royal Family, I see that as a work of fiction. Camilla isn’t some bloodthirsty lady hellbent on establishing a Parker-Bowles dynasty, Kate doesn’t come from a gypsy background, Pippa and Harry never had the hots for each other, etc. etc. (I finished that show last night and I highly recommend it, the premise is so ridiculous it was like watching an extended SNL skit).

    • (TheOG) Jan90067 says:

      The Windsors is BRILLIANT! 😄

      I can’t wait to see what Spitting Image does with this lot!

      • Amelie says:

        Yay so glad to see another The Windsors fan here! You just taught me something new, I was unfamiliar with Spitting Image! And I just realized that show inspired the French show Les Guignols de l’Info (same concept, satirizing politicians, celebrities, etc. with puppets!). I also found out Harry Enfield started out on Spitting Image which seems fitting since he plays Prince Charles on The Windsors!

  12. Implicit says:

    Stiff upper lips mates, you don’t help Megan fairs fair byeeeee

  13. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I watched the first season only. It’s good. I quit because I’m anti that particular royal family over their past few years of deplorable hypocrisy. I’d like to say I can’t believe there’s another article about this foolish uproar, but I’m not. I wish they had this much interest and energy in defending and supporting and protecting H&M and expressing horror over family pedophiles and making sure justice is served. But here we are, complaining about entertainment.

  14. Amy Bee says:

    If Charles and Clarence House weren’t a bubble, they’d know that most people who watch films based on true events know that the stories have been dramatised and usually search for the real stories on the internet. Netflix using Diana: In own words to refute Clarence House’s claims is the best response to the complaining and explaining.

  15. anon says:

    Yes, I’ve seen the caterwauling: By the royal family, the British press and even Diana’s brother, the arrogant asshole, Charles Spencer, who – quite frankly – was a complete bastard to his sister before she passed, refusing to allow her to live at Althorp, which might have made a difference in the way things turned out – we’ll never know.

    I’ve seen the story about how the other arrogant asshole Charles (the ex-husband) and Camilla have “limited” their social media comments because of “The Crown.”

    Listen up, courtiers (because I know your read these comments – shouldn’t you be figuring out how to do actual work supporting your 53 nation commonwealth? I digress):

    We all know what happened to Diana. And we all recognize that is a work of fiction *based on real events.* But please bear in mind that Camilla, in spite of the fact that she landed her man and the BRF spent millions rehabilitating her image, the closer Charles gets to The Crown, the more people are going to remember how Camilla got there. The Crown, as a show, did not create the hard facts around this story, that the BRF cynically reeled in *an unsuspecting teenage girl* – and then sat back and watched as Charles consorted with another woman humiliating his wife in front of the whole world – they only dramatized it.

    The hard facts about their affair and the destruction of Diana are indisputable, I don’t care how many ostrich feather hats Camilla wears. She will never be fully accepted by many, many people because we were there. We know what happened.

    • Eleonor says:

      If there is something this mad reaction from Firm proves it’s how thing were worst.
      If The Crown approach to the drama was wrong (totally unbelievable) the BRF would have simply shut up, pursed their lips and move on.
      Instead they have been going crazy since three weeks: so The Crown basically nailed it, not the details, not all the facts obviously, but they nailed how badly they treated Diana, how insensitive, cold hearted they were towards her. And to me, this is only the tip of the iceberg.
      I can’t help but think how young she was, and how lonely she must have been.

    • tcbc says:

      The focus on Camilla is weird, IMO. If she never existed, it would have been someone else from the same set, who would have behaved the same way. (There were already other someones!) The people who were at fault were Charles, the Queen, the institution of the palace (the courtiers), and the press. These were the individuals who colluded in Diana’s torture.

      Seems like people focus on Camilla to absolve the Queen from blame, either consciously or not. The Queen was the one with power. She could have stopped this. She did not. She ought to bear the blame.

      • Tessa says:

        Camilla was not the average mistress. Traditional mistresses did not bad mouth the royal wives, Camilla did. Traditional mistresses knew their places, Camilla did not. THere she was in Diana’s absence playing hostess for Charles and ordering around servants. She also had ambitions. Dale Tryon was more traditional. Camilla is to blame, she actively undermined the wife. THe QUeen ostriched.

  16. Alarmjaguar says:

    By this logic, every BBC costume drama should have a label, every Downton Abbey episode, etc., it is ridiculous

  17. NEENA ZEE says:

    I have thoroughly enjoyed The Crown. After bingeing season 4, I went back and started the whole series again. It’s entertaining and beautiful and emotional, but not a documentary. All the whinging out of the palace is absurd.

    The repeat offenses against women who marry into the family is pretty disgusting. Their treatment of Wallis Simpson, Diane Spencer and Megan Markle is like clockwork… nothing changes, none of them have learned a single thing from history. But it’s not just the family, it’s all their counselors and toadies.

  18. Mindy_Dopple says:

    I love all the comments on here so I have nothing better to add then, I might just play The Crown in the background so it’ll get the views. *Cackles in Diana’s memory**

  19. Joy says:

    Dear BRF,

    The truth was actually worse, and Netflix did you a solid by not going ALL the way with it as they could have. Please be quiet before people start poking around and discovering the rest of the story.

    The World

  20. Feeshalori says:

    There’s no disclaimer on the front page of historical fiction books that informs the reader the story is fiction based on fact. Duh, that’s a given! And if you’re interested in that story you’re reading, you research more about it to find out the facts. Which is what’s happening here; artistic license is used in both cases. However this is living history and most of us who were alive back then during that era know that the royal family can’t try to whitewash the truth now. Karma is Diana from her grave giving the royals a run for their money.