Prince Charles Candidly Reacts to His Portrayal on “The Crown”

The hit Netflix series’ fifth season drops later this year—with the Prince of Wales as a main character.

Prince Charles
(Image credit: Getty Images)

So it turns out Prince Charles has watched The Crown after all!

The Prince of Wales candidly spoke of his portrayal on the hit Netflix show at an event in Edinburgh, Scotland, according to Anas Sarwar, leader of the Scottish Labour Party (and per The Mirror). And, according to the future king, his portrayal—chronicled so far in four seasons, with a fifth on the way later this year—is “nowhere near” who he really is.

At an event at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival last year, held before the opening of Scottish Parliament, Sarwar says Charles led with a mention of The Crown’s inaccuracy. “There was a group of MSPs all standing, and he came over and went, ‘Hello, nice to meet you all,’ and he went, ‘I’m nowhere near how they portray me on Netflix.’ I thought that was a really interesting way of how you describe yourself.”

Heretofore Charles has been played by Josh O’Connor; going forward, he will be played by Dominic West. Charles has yet to publicly comment on The Crown, and his office at Clarence House refuses to comment on private conversations (of which this exchange was).

Charles isn’t the only member of the royal family to watch the show—so have Princess Eugenie, Prince Edward, and even the Queen herself. (Who could blame her? The show is all about her, after all.) Prince Harry, who alongside wife Meghan Markle signed a lucrative deal with Netflix to produce content, has also admitted to watching the show, but he says it’s more accurate than people think.

In an interview with James Corden, Harry says the show is “loosely based on the truth” and that the show doesn’t “pretend to be news. It’s fictional, but it’s loosely based on the truth. Of course, it’s not strictly accurate, but loosely, it gives you a rough idea about what that lifestyle, what the pressures of putting duty and service above family and everything else, what can come from that.” He added “I am way more comfortable with The Crown than I am seeing the stories written about my family, or my wife, or myself.”

Now, thanks to Sarwar, we know that Charles watches, too. For his part, the politician jokingly added (according to PureWow) “I’m going to be in so much trouble for this, because I don’t think you are meant to tell private conversations!” 

Rachel Burchfield
Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor

Rachel Burchfield is a writer, editor, and podcaster whose primary interests are fashion and beauty, society and culture, and, most especially, the British Royal Family and other royal families around the world. She serves as Marie Claire’s Senior Celebrity and Royals Editor and has also contributed to publications like Allure, Cosmopolitan, Elle, Glamour, Harper’s Bazaar, InStyle, People, Vanity Fair, Vogue, and W, among others. Before taking on her current role with Marie Claire, Rachel served as its Weekend Editor and later Royals Editor. She is the cohost of Podcast Royal, a show that was named a top five royal podcast by The New York Times. A voracious reader and lover of books, Rachel also hosts I’d Rather Be Reading, which spotlights the best current nonfiction books hitting the market and interviews the authors of them. Rachel frequently appears as a media commentator, and she or her work has appeared on outlets like NBC’s Today Show, ABC’s Good Morning America, CNN, and more.