Princess Diana's Brother, Charles Spencer, Just Called Out 'The Crown'

"There is a lot of conjecture and a lot of invention," he said.

Charles Spencer and Lady Diana as young children.
(Image credit: PA Images/Getty Images)
  • Princess Diana's brother, Charles, Earl Spencer, said The Crown shouldn't be taken as "a history lesson."
  •  "The worry for me is that people see a program like that and they forget that it is fiction," he said.
  • Charles revealed he refused the show permission to film at his ancestral home, Althorp House.

The Crown might be half the world's current TV show of choice, but it's somewhat less popular among the actual royals themselves—including Princess Diana's brother, Charles, Earl Spencer. The show's fourth season portrays in intimate detail Diana's struggles as a new member of the monarchy, and Charles isn't exactly sold on the depiction of his sister.

Appearing on British TV show Love Your Weekend with Alan Titchmarsh on Sunday, as Hello! reports, Charles said The Crown shouldn't be taken as historical record. "The worry for me is that people see a program like that and they forget that it is fiction," he said. "They assume, especially foreigners, I find Americans tell me they have watched The Crown as if they have taken a history lesson. Well, they haven’t."

"There is a lot of conjecture and a lot of invention, isn’t there? You can hang it on fact but the bits in between are not fact," Charles continued.

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In fact, Earl Spencer revealed, The Crown's production team asked his permission to film at Althorp House, the Spencer family seat and the childhood home of Diana and Charles. "Actually, The Crown asked if they could film at Althorp and I said obviously not," he said.

Charles further shared the obligation he feels to defend Diana's legacy: "I feel it is my duty to stand up for her when I can," he said. "She left me, for instance, as guardian of her sons, so I feel there was a trust passed on. And we grew up together. You know if you grow up with somebody they are still that person; it doesn’t matter what happens to them later. So yeah, I feel very passionately that I have a role to honor her memory."

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Emily Dixon
Morning Editor

Emily Dixon is a British journalist who’s contributed to CNN, Teen Vogue, Time, Glamour, The Guardian, Wonderland, The Big Roundtable, Bust, and more, on everything from mental health to fashion to political activism to feminist zine collectives. She’s also a committed Beyoncé, Kacey Musgraves, and Tracee Ellis Ross fan, an enthusiastic but terrible ballet dancer, and a proud Geordie lass.