‘The Crown’ shows off Dominic West & Elizabeth Debicki as Charles & Diana

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The Crown’s Season 5 is currently filming, and per usual, they’ve rebooted the cast, as they do every two seasons. For Season 5 – and who knows, possibly a Season 6 – Imelda Staunton will play Queen Elizabeth II. Dominic West plays Prince Charles, and Elizabeth Debicki plays Diana. The Debicki casting was fait accompli – basically, as soon as Debicki got any kind of profile as an actress, everyone dream-cast her as Diana. She simply looks so much like Diana, and she’s tall and leggy like Diana too.

Netflix released the first photo of Staunton as the Queen a few weeks ago and people were like “okay, looks fine.” But we knew the money shots would be of West and Debicki, and here we go. Netflix released these on Tuesday. Debicki’s Diana wig is ON POINT. That’s exactly how Diana wore her hair in the early 90s, and basically everything here looks perfect.

Now, Dominic West as Charles… looks nothing like Charles. Not even a little bit. The biggest complaint I’ve seen already is that casting West is simply too generous to Charles, that Dominic is too charismatic, too bangable, too handsome to play Charles. Now, don’t get me wrong – lots of women wanted to bang Charles back in the day. But they wanted to bang him because he was going to be king, not because he had so much game or whatever. Now, Josh O’Connor? I thought Josh was too handsome to play Charles too, but Josh really captured something. I’m not sure Dominic is a good enough actor for that.

PS… Did you know that The Crown has cast Jonny Lee Miller as Prime Minister John Major? Holy hell.

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Photos courtesy of Netflix’s Instagram.

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104 Responses to “‘The Crown’ shows off Dominic West & Elizabeth Debicki as Charles & Diana”

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  1. Alexandria says:

    Woah…don’t know if the angle helps but that’s Diana. I wonder how Harry feels looking at this picture. Bittersweet.

    • Jezz says:

      The way she’s holding her hands screams Diana. And her long neck and giant eyes. But most of all this actress always looks like she has a secret, which Diana always did. A kind of funny little secret she’ll tell you as soon as you get away from these fuddy-duddies.

    • Betsy says:

      I don’t see it at all, but I liked her in The Man from U.N.C.L.E. (Not that I’ve watched it since the news about the alleged rapist actor came out).

      • Rice says:

        She was the best thing about Tenet and she was extraordinary as Ayesha in Guardians of the Galaxy: Vol. 2.

      • ArtHistorian says:

        She was also really good in that series with Tom Hiddleston, Olivia Colman and Tobias Menzies. I think it is called The Night Manager.

  2. Nina says:

    There was no one better than Dominic West? Although finally the actor that plays Charles is unlikeable almost just as Charles himself

    • Robyn says:

      I was thinking the same thing. Skeevy adulterer playing a skeevy adulterer.

    • Lisa says:

      I just Cant with Dominic West. I hate every character he plays. So at the very least he has his type casting down.

  3. Becks1 says:

    At least they got the hair right?? He is too good looking to play Charles but we’ll see how he does acting-wise.

    my only quibble with Josh O’Connor as Charles (bc I thought he did a very good job and was perfect in season 3) is that he seemed very young to play Charles, he is only 5 years older than Emma Corrin (I just looked it up lol) and I think that made him more sympathetic than he would have been otherwise. She was 20 at their marriage (barely), he was 32, almost 33. I think downplaying that age and maturity gap was the one mistake the crown made casting-wise so far because it didn’t properly represent the power dynamic.

    Elizabeth Debicki – she looks eerily like diana. that wig is on point.

    Imelda Staunton – I dont know, she’s so in my head as Umbridge that it’s going to take me an episode or two to get into her as the Queen, I think. With Olivia Colman I was into her right away, so I’m sure Staunton will click for me, just may take an episode or two.

    • Jezz says:

      I don’t know anything about costumes for movies. Why do you think this is a wig and not just a haircut and style?

      • Becks1 says:

        Oh it could be a haircut and style. I’m just using “wig” to describe the hair, I have no idea what they are actually doing in hair and makeup on the set of the Crown, lol.

    • terra says:

      Imelda Staunton is enshrined in my head as Vera Drake – that movie gutted me – and Dominic West will forever be Jimmy McNulty of The Wire.

    • Lady D says:

      LOL @Becks1, she will forever and always be Professor Umbridge.

    • Eleonor says:

      When I saw Imelda as Petty Betty I thought of Umbridge, and I was scared !

    • sunny says:

      Josh was waaaay too attractive for Charles as is Dominic but Josh nailed the petulance, insecurity and self-pity. I think Dominic is also a fine actor but I think he probably only nails the petulance.

      Elizabeth is such great casting as Diana and she is so talented. Interested to see what she does with the role.

  4. Cessily says:

    Nooooo…. I like him, but as PC? He is far to handsome. (They needed a big eared, small man with slouchy poor me posture)

  5. Loretta says:

    Debicki is perfect as Princess Diana but Dominic as Prince Charles is a big no

  6. BayTampaBay says:

    I think Dominic West’s acting ability in his portrayal of Charles is going to surprise us. Peter Morgan is a pro and knows exactly what he is doing. Peter Morgan would not cast someone who not perform at zenith level in the role of Charles.

    • Digital Unicorn says:

      West is a douche but he can act – he was great as Richard Burton in the TV movie he did on them where Helena Bonham Carter played Elizabeth Taylor.

    • Prairiegirl says:

      100%. It’s the energy an actor brings to the role that matters, not whether there’s physical resemblance. (Example: Matt Smith looks nothing like young Prince Philip and he was fabulous.) The Crown isn’t a documentary. All of the cast members are more attractive than their real life counterparts!

    • Ann says:

      I agree. I don’t think he’ll be as good as O’Connor was, but even in that single still photo, West seems to have the facial expression down pat. And the one hand in the pocket, that’s totally Charles too.

      He’s a very good actor, I think he’ll be just fine. And wow, Debicki looks like Diana!

      The weird thing is I’ve never seen West play a British Toff! I’ve seen him play Americans in “The Affair” and I think “Mona Lisa Smile,” and a Frenchman in “Les Miserables” (never saw “The Wire,” I know, I’m missing out). That will be interesting, but he’s married to one and I’m sure he can do the accent.

      • EBS says:

        Dominic West is very posh himself, he will barely have to change his natural accent to play Charles.

    • Chaine says:

      ITA. I’ve never watched The Crown but the fact that Dominic West is going to play Prince Charles makes me think I am going to watch it now.

  7. Sofia says:

    Season 6 is happening. It was cancelled but they decided to do it anyways. And before anyone gets too excited and starts thinking if H&M will be covered etc etc, they won’t be. 1) Morgan has said S6 won’t take them any closer to the present day, just allow them to cover the same time period in more detail and 2) he’s also stated he doesn’t like covering events less than 10 years old. I imagine S5 will go up to 97 (the final scene being Diana gets in the car or something) and S6 goes up to 2002 (QM/Margaret’s death) or 2005 (Charles and Camilla wedding. The show started with the wedding of one heir so ending it with another might be a “book end” Morgan likes).

    As for Debicki I think she looks great. Not happy with West at all. He brings a smarmy persona into almost everything and Charles is as charming/personable as a wet sock so a smarmy Charles will be… interesting to watch. But he’s got the experience of cheating on his blonde aristo wife with another blonde so there’s that.

    • Becks1 says:

      That was my theory – that Season 5 (when it was supposed to be the final) would end with Diana getting into the car, or the car going into the tunnel or something, since Morgan already covered the week after that with The Queen. I don’t know if he would redo that week. But now with the added Season 6, I think we’ll end with Margaret’s death, QM’s death, and the golden jubilee. Mayyyyybe Charles and Camilla’s wedding like you said but definitely nothing after that. I don’t even know if there will be any time spent on William and Harry outside of how they deal with their mother’s death.

      • BayTampaBay says:

        I think there will be very little of Harry & Baldingham explored in seasons 5 or 6.

      • Sofia says:

        Yeah they’re definitely not going to go into William or Harry in great detail. We might get an episode of William going to St Andrew’s and the episode ends with him meeting a brunette but we don’t see her face lol. Plus their stories aren’t over yet. And for H&M, they’ve just started theirs.

      • Shawna says:

        On redoing the week – I think it would be fascinating to have the same director cover the same material in a different context. I’m sure there’s things he left on the table before.

    • Snuffles says:

      I think they will go up to 2002. By the time it airs, 20 years will have passed. It will probably end with Princess Margaret and the Queen Mum dying. They should also do an ominous post script of scheming Kate throwing herself into William’s path.

      • Sofia says:

        Then what are they going to do with Season 6. I doubt Morgan will be covering the W&K courtship years. I believe Variety (a trade magazine) said the show will end in the early 2000s

  8. Darla says:

    West is a scum but he’s a really talented actor.

  9. Winnie Cooper’s Mom says:

    Why did they cast him as Charles?? He’s also too olive skinned. There certainly had to be a less attractive actor out there who resembled Charles more? Charles wishes he looked half this good! Lol

  10. Amy Bee says:

    Dominic West knows about cheating on his wife and it becoming a public spectacle. He’s perfect for the role.

    • Cessily says:

      I did not know that, I know nothing about him but did watch him on a HBO series years ago.

      • Becks1 says:

        If you look up his tag here on CB, you’ll see the whole sordid mess, he was having an affair with Lily James last year.

      • Agreatreckoning says:

        And left a note on a bush stating their marriage is strong! Nothing says a marriage is strong like a note on a bush.

      • LaraW” says:

        Lol, what is it with aristos and their bushes? I’m starting to make involuntary associations when I see shubbery. THIS must be what the Knights of Ni were referring to when they demanded a shubbery!

        Now I must comb Tatler to figure out the meaning of the secret aristo code “cut down a tree with a herring.” Red herrings? Family trees? Bushes that grow into trees that need to be cut down by offering the media a herring? A giant metaphor for the “three people in marriage” situation? Endless possibilities!

      • Cessily says:

        @laraW to funny 🤣.. please keep me updated with what you find out.. I will never look at my landscaping the same again🤣😂😅.

        @Becks1 @agreatreckoning thanks I will look him up.

    • Jayna says:

      To be fair, IMO a very high percentage of actors know about cheating on their wives. It’s naive to think the majority of actors haven’t cheated at least one time while away for months on set off in their own little world

  11. MellyMel says:

    I think it would be hard to find someone who looks as unattractive as Charles. Josh looked nothing like him as well, but he has the ears. I’m not familiar with Dominic’s work, so I’m curious to see how this goes for him. Elizabeth however looks just like Diana, and she’s a really good actress. Very excited for season five.

  12. SarahCS says:

    I’m having major fear about seeing JLM as John Major. I mean I know that well after the fact we found out about his affair with Edwina Curry but come on, the man is GREY. dull, dull, dull. I’m not sure my everlasting love for JLM will survive this

    • BayTampaBay says:

      I always thought and still think John Major was/is good looking in a very British distinguished way.

      • The Hench says:

        I’ve always been slightly repulsed by the fact that John Major has a huge philtrum/space between nose and lip and I can’t get over his portrayal as the grey man in Spitting Image.

        PS I know I’m weird.
        PPS And if we’re going for good looking in a very British, distinguished way I’d go for Charles Dance rather than John Major.

    • Vera says:

      SarahCS, same here, exactly what you said about JML and the grey, dull John Major.

    • Penguin says:

      I think only when you put JLM as John Major vs Andrew Scott as Tony Blair that it becomes interesting. Neither men look at all like their counterparts, but they’re both amazing actors, so it’ll make for amazing television. The post-Thacher political landscape of the UK and becoming part of the EU is a fascinating and often overlooked part of modern history.

  13. Harper says:

    West’s hair and the downturned mouth in the above photo do capture a slight essence of Charles. Perhaps West has nailed the self-pitying whine in Charles’ speech when talking about himself and his tragic, self-imposed marriage to Di?

    I never thought Josh O’Connor was a great Charles because physically, he just lacked that knob of a nose and those big old ears that make the real-life Charles a bit of an odd-looking duck. As a result, I could never make that jump … it was always Josh O’Connor acting as Charles. However, there were moments of Emma Corrin’s performance that made me forget she wasn’t the real Di. I don’t always think the casting on the Crown gets it right even so they have so many great actors to choose from.

  14. agnes says:

    Johnny Lee Miller! *squeeeeeeeeeeee*

  15. questions says:

    I don’t really get why Dominic West is considered handsome. I watched him in a few episodes of The Affair, and while I think he captured well the arrogance of the character, I didn’t actually find him attractive. Maybe his acting as a cheater was too good/realistic on that show, because I wound up so repulsed I couldn’t finish watching the series.

    • Maxine duCamp says:

      Hard agree, and this has absolutely nothing to do with how he came off during the cheating scandal with Lily James (although that certainly doesn’t help). I think he has a face like a canned ham, very similar to Sean Penn. But my friend loves him from his days on The Wire and because he’s Irish. Different strokes …

      • Nick G says:

        A reviewer once described his character on the Affair as a “horny old goat” and it was so apt because it captured both the character and something in West himself. So the Lily James affair later seemed utterly predictable. He’s handsome but also leering, satyr-like, privileged.

    • BayTampaBay says:

      In 2019, West played the role of Jean Valjean in the BBC’s adaptation of Victor Hugo’s novel Les Misérables. He was very good in this version of Les Misérables along with Lily Collins.

    • psl says:

      Have you watched The Wire? He was so hot as McNulty.

      • questions says:

        No. Based on what others have have said, I suspect that would change my perception.

        I hated his character in The Affair so much maybe it carried over into my perception of his looks. Objectively, I could tell the acting and writing was good on that show — but I hated his character so much I quit watching even though I knew, from an artistic standpoint, the show could take me on an inside “journey” of the long years married man’s male psyche (which I realized I didn’t want to get to know after a few episodes — ha ha).

      • Anne Call says:

        Currently watching the Pursuit of Love on prime and West plays a very eccentric cranky father to Lily James and The Wine Show where he plays himself along with Matthew Goode and Mathew Rhys (it’s a great show to watch if you have a travel bug that is being squashed by Covid). His personal life sounds messy, but I think we’d be staring at a blank tv screen if we stopped watching actors in shows that have messy personal lives…

      • psl says:

        @questions – I watched The Affair before I saw The Wire. I too loathed Noah, and then after The Wire (which I have watched probably 20x in 3 years) I love him.

        Well, until his recent public grossness.

      • Becks1 says:

        You know, I’ve never seen the Wire, and I’m from Baltimore, lol (I think that’s part of the reason why, I don’t really feel the need to watch it.) But he’s supposed to be O’Malley, who was really hot back in the day. He used to be in this Irish band and would play in these sleeveless shirts……

    • Jayna says:

      I found him very attractive in the first season, and I like him better with an American accent. I didn’t find him as sexy with his British accent. Usually, it’s the opposite for me, but not with him. I loved the rich tone of his voice playing an American.

  16. ElleV says:

    Guys has anyone heard about the ABSOLUTELY BONKERS lawsuit going on with the Aussie claiming to be Camilla and Charles’ secret son??? Wild stuff and obviously it won’t go anywhere but MAN this guy looks like their kid and it’s fascinating he was adopted by the daughter of an employee of the Royal family

    • Nick G says:

      YES and I am… starting to believe him! Just posted one of his daughter(?) next to a pic of Charlotte

    • Ann says:

      Oh yes, I did see that! I don’t remember him looking like West though. Now I need to Google…..

  17. TigerMcQueen says:

    Not sure what the think about DW as Chuck, but he’s a good actor. If anyone hasn’t seen The Wire, do it. The tech is outdated, but it’s one of the best televisions shows (outside of season 5) ever made…ever…and it has a young Idris Elba in it.

  18. Case says:

    I really missed Claire Foy and Matt Smith when they moved on to the older Elizabeth and Philip in S3, but I think I will miss Josh O’Connor even more. He’s so wonderful as Charles. But an actor I like less will probably be a good thing, because I get mad at myself for how much Josh makes me sympathize with Charles at times, lol.

    I’m excited for Elizabeth Debicki, though. Sometimes Emma Corrin is just a bit too “actor-y” with her smirks and sideways glances and I find it distracting.

    • Jayna says:

      I agree. Olivia never did it for me as the Queen.

      • Ann says:

        I thought she seemed too soft and nice or something. She didn’t have Claire Foy’s slight edge. I like Olivia, but Foy brought more depth and complexity to the character.

      • Becks1 says:

        I also think the change in focus impacted the Queen’s character – in the first two seasons, the show really is just about the Queen, Phillip, the QM, Margaret, and one or two courtiers. By the fourth season there was a lot more going on and they could not devote the time to the Queen as a character that they had in the first two seasons. So Claire Foy brought more complexity to the character (She was excellent IMO) but the character itself was also written in a more complex way.

  19. LaraW” says:

    What I really want to know is who is playing Andrew, and to what extent he’s going to be in the series. Epstein falls squarely in this time period after all.

    • Sofia says:

      James Murray.

    • Becks1 says:

      I don’t know how much they’ll delve into Epstein, especially if the series ends in 2002- there’s a lot of other stuff to cover that directly involves the Queen (the Crown) and Charles (the next Crown). But they are certainly going to allude to it in my opinion – I think we saw that coming last season, where Andrew (when we saw him) was portrayed as spoiled, privileged, and definitely definitely Mummy’s favorite.

      • Ann says:

        I would like to see them explore the dynamic with Charles and his two younger brothers more. They alluded to it in the episode where Andrew married Fergie, where Charles wandered in and made what Edward called an “impressively cunty” comment about how the two of them would dwindle in importance as his own sons grew and had kids of their own.

        Gawd, Edward is the only one of her sons who seems at all bearable.

  20. AmberMarie says:

    I don’t know how I missed that he was cast as Charles. I haven’t been a huge fan after the drama with his wife but I guess it is consistent with the royal family’s drama? Hope this doesn’t ruin the series for me. I had just started liking it again.

  21. Lala11_7 says:

    When doing biopics…I think it’s important for the casting director to go on whether the actor’s energy matches the part they play more than looks…a perfect example of that is Angela Bassett & Laurence Fishburne in “What’s love got to do with it”…NEITHER looked like Ike & Tina…hell Laurence could damn near make 2 Ikes height wise…but I can’t think of better actors for those parts…

    Dominic West has the PERFECT energy to play Charles and I can’t wait to hate-watch it…because West has NEVA been my cuppa tea

  22. Sankay says:

    I don’t get the need to have an actor that looks like the person thymus are playing. Mannerisms go a long way in a portrayal and good acting are better than looks.

    • questions says:

      This is true. Ashton Kutcher looks like Steve Jobs, but he wasn’t very good at playing him. Michael Fassbender looks nothing like Steve Jobs, but he captured something of his essence and I got caught up in his portrayal.

    • Prairiegirl says:

      100%. Helena Bonham-Carter looks NOTHING like Princess Margaret but had her bitchy haughtiness down perfectly.

    • Blueskies says:

      I agree Helena Bonham Carter was miscast, as wonderful as she is in any role she takes. Vanessa Kirby was superb as Margaret (although too tall, lol). She said herself it was the best time of her life, you could tell she loved the role. I’m glad The Crown didn’t go down the aging the same actors route, but you do really have to forget the previous actors, there’s no consistency, really. I think Olivia Coleman and Tobias Menzies incorporated bits of Clare Foy and Matt Smith’s portrayals which worked well.

      I love The Crown, not least because of the events of the day they also add – politics, foreign affairs etc., – it’s all enthralling to me and the acting is sublime. Jeremy Northam as Anthony Eden – just wonderful.

  23. Plums says:

    I mean I give them a lot of leeway with Charles because he’s so uniquely ugly that it would be near impossible to cast him with any recognizable actor who even comes close. It’s all about how well they embody his mannerisms and speech, imo. That remains to be seen with Dominic West, so I’ll reserve judgment.

    With Elizabeth Debicki- man, I don’t know. Everyone raves about how much of a spitting image Diana she is, but in this shot, I just don’t see it? She looks like a generally similar looking person to Diana who is styled to look like her, but I don’t look at that picture and see “omg, it’s Diana!” Maybe if I saw her moving and talking in the role, like I would want to see how West plays Charles?

    • questions says:

      I don’t think she looks like her either.

      I’m surprised they simply didn’t continue with the previous actress who played Diana. Diana wasn’t old when she died. Although maybe the split in actresses confirms the movement from innocence to worldliness.

      • Ann says:

        I am kind of disappointed they didn’t continue with Corrin, too, since unlike the others she only got one season to play her role. I know she’s too young to play the 30-something Diana, but still, they easily could have aged her up with makeup etc.

        That said, Diana did look quite different in her 30s than she did when she and Charles were first together. When she was 20 she was and English Rose with a roundish face and a sweet brown bob, then later a more lean, angular face, a workout body, blonde hair and a tan.

  24. questions says:

    I have a feeling he might do a good job. Something in that above photo seems to capture the internal tension Charles seems to possess. It’s just a still photo, but I can kind of picture Charles looking like that in private.

    I think the Princess Diana role is too hard for anyone to play. Everyone tries their best, but there’s always something missing. Wow, the Naomi Watts movie was so bad.

  25. Jequill says:

    They should have put a prosthetic nose on dominic west.

  26. FancyHat says:

    He is way too hot to play that goofy looking asshole

  27. Shawna says:

    No one has mentioned Dominic West on The Hour. He was the character I loved to hate. A real charismatic jerk…. So…I can see him making it work.

  28. Nedsdag says:

    There was a TikTok video discussing the casting of Prince Charles in several upcoming television and film productions. In the video, the following was posted in bold letters:


  29. Dee Kay says:

    Dominic West may be despicable irl but he is one hell of an actor. He slays in every role I’ve seen him in (The Wire, The Affair, Les Miserables). He definitely is too handsome to play Charles but whatevs, Liam freaking Neeson played Alfred Kinsey in that biopic and had to act like he was sooooo unattractive to most potential sexual partners and was deeply insecure about his looks/appeal etc. A charismatic hot actor playing the feeble, milquetoast Charles is no different.

  30. Stef says:

    As much as he seems like a douche in real life, Domonic West is hot! He’s also a fantastic actor so I’m sure he can pull this off. Just not sure why they’d pick him for Charles, Prince Charles is ugly and there is nothing attractive about his weird looks and beet-red face. Ugh. Charles doesn’t deserve a sexy man playing him…