Netflix adds 'fictional dramatisation' disclaimer to The Crown after fury at scenes of 'malicious nonsense'

21 October 2022, 08:27

The Crown has been embroiled in controversy over its fictionalisation of events
The Crown has been embroiled in controversy over its fictionalisation of events. Picture: Alamy

By Will Taylor

The Crown's new trailer has had a disclaimer added to it describing the show as "inspired by real events" but a "fictional dramatisation" after controversy about its scenes.

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The Netflix hit that chronicles Elizabeth II's life and her family has come under heavy fire for its depiction of key moments and claims it has entirely fabricated some scenes.

Sir John Major, who is portrayed in the upcoming series, described some scenes revolving around then Prince Charles plotting to oust the Queen as "malicious nonsense".

Dame Judi Dench, a friend of Queen Consort Camilla, intervened to blast the show as verging on "crude sensationalism" and called for a disclaimer on each show.

The new trailer for series five starts with a message that says: "Inspired by real events, this fictional dramatisation tells the story of Queen Elizabeth II and the political and personal events that shaped her reign."

Read more: Fury as Netflix drama The Crown set to show Diana's final moments before Paris car crash

Dame Judi Dench was furious about the series
Dame Judi Dench was furious about the series. Picture: Alamy

In the trailer, Elizabeth Debicki, playing Diana, says: "People will never understand how it's been for me. I never stood a chance."

Series five will portray the pressure put on the royal family as she divorces Charles.

The series will show her infamous interview with Martin Bashir on Panorama – which Prince William later said should never be shown again after a BBC report found it had been secured through deceit.

But joining former Prime Minister Sir John in attacking the series, Dame Judi said: "Sir John Major is not alone in his concerns that the latest series of The Crown will present an inaccurate and hurtful account of history.

"Indeed, the closer the drama comes to our present times, the more freely it seems willing to blur the lines between historical accuracy and crude sensationalism.

Read more: 'Damaging and malicious fiction': Sir John Major attacks The Crown amid fears over King's reputation

The Crown is under fire for scenes involving then-Prince Charles and Diana
The Crown is under fire for scenes involving then-Prince Charles and Diana. Picture: Alamy

"While many will recognise The Crown for the brilliant but fictionalised account of events that it is, I fear that a significant number of viewers, particularly overseas, may take its version of history as being wholly true."

The show also became embroiled in controversy when it emerged that staff were worried about the planned depiction of the events leading up to Diana's death in Paris.

Also shown in the teaser is Charles – played by Dominic West – consulting the Queen, portrayed by Imelda Staunton.

Netflix has insisted it makes clear The Crown is a fictionalised drama.