ByAllanah Faherty, writer at
Senior staff writer | Twitter: @allanahfaherty | Email: [email protected]
Allanah Faherty

With the cooler months upon us, now is the perfect time to rug up warm and start in on some good old fashioned binge watching. Thankfully has released its most ambitious series yet in the historic drama, .

Starting with a 10 episode first season, The Crown promises to bring viewers inside Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street as it tells the story of Queen Elizabeth II's early reign. The series is set to reveal the personal intrigues, romances, and political rivalries behind the great events that shaped the second half of the 20th Century.

So with such an important piece of history being brought to life, who exactly will be playing these familiar faces? Take a look below at the cast for The Crown and learn a little about the iconic characters they're taking on:

Claire Foy - Queen Elizabeth II

[Alex Bailey/Netflix]
[Alex Bailey/Netflix]

What you might know her from: Little Dorrit, Pulse, Season of the Witch, The Promise, The Night Watch, Wreckers, Hacks, Upstairs Downstairs, White Heat, Vampire Academy, Crossbones, Wolf Hall, The Lady in the Van.

Claire Foy takes on the role as the young Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown. The series begins with princess Elizabeth marrying Philip Mountbatten. The pair had expected to have many years of marriage before Elizabeth's ascension to the throne, however her father's unexpected death resulted in her inheriting the crown, and the burden of responsibility that comes with it, when she was just 25-years-old.

Matt Smith - Philip Mountbatten, Duke of Edinburgh

[Alex Bailey/Netflix]
[Alex Bailey/Netflix]

What you might know him from: Party Animals, In Bruges, Moses Jones, Doctor Who, Womb, Bert & Dickie, Lost River, Terminator Genisys, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.

Matt Smith will be portraying Philip Mountbatten, Queen Elizabeth II's husband in the series. In many ways the Duke of Edinburgh is the opposite of his wife, and is very much a character reluctant to be browbeaten by the British Establishment. After enjoying just a few short years as a young married couple before his wife ascended the throne, Philip's greatest sense of loss is that of the tight family unit that he worked so hard to create.

John Lithgow - Sir Winston Churchill

[Robert Viglasky/Netflix]
[Robert Viglasky/Netflix]

What you might know him from: Blow Out, Terms of Endearment, Footloose, Harry and the Hendersons, Memphis Belle, Ricochet, Cliffhanger, The Wrong Man, The Pelican Brief, Silent Fall, Homegrown, Shrek, 3rd Rock from the Sun, The Life and Death of Peter Sellers, Twenty Good Years, Dexter, Leap Year, Rise of the Planet of the Apes, This is 40, Love in Strange, How I Met Your Mother, Interstellar, Miss Sloane.

The talented John Lithgow portrays an older Winston Churchill in The Crown. As Churchill enters his second stint as Prime Minister, this time around he's focussed on cementing his image as peacemaker rather than war-monger. As the young queen ascends the throne, Churchill sees his chance to have a lasting influence on the monarchy and the state of the country.

See Also:

Victoria Hamilton - Queen Mother

What you might know her from: Pride and Prejudice, Cone Zone, Mansfield Park, The Savages, Victoria & Albert, Before You Go, Babyfather, Scoop, The Time of Your Life, French Film, Lark Rise to Candleford, What Remains, The Game, Doctor Foster.

Victoria Hamilton stars in the role of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, the strong and supportive woman who was constantly at the side of her husband during his reluctant tenure as king. Throughout The Crown we follow as the Queen Mother — who is widowed at just 51-years-old — finds herself struggling to maintain her position of power and sense of purpose.

Jared Harris - King George VI

[Alex Bailey/Netflix]
[Alex Bailey/Netflix]

What you might know him from: Far and Away, Natural Born Killers, Nadja, Blue in the Face, Dead Man, I Shot Andy Warhol, Gold in the Streets, White Lies, Happiness, The Eternal, Perfume, Igby Goes Down, Mr Deeds, Resident Evil: Apocalypse, Ocean's Twelve, 32A, From Within, The Riches, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button, The Ward, Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Fringe, Mad Men, Lincoln, Pompeii, The Boxtrolls, Poltergeist (2015), The Man From U.N.C.L.E., The Expanse, The Last Face.

Jared Harris portrays the stoic, gentle King George VI. Elizabeth's father was an uneasy monarch, uncomfortable with the pressure that came with wearing the crown (a role which should have fallen to his brother, who chose to abdicate the throne). However, he still took the responsibility of serving the public very seriously, and was totally driven by his sense of duty - much like his daughter.

Vanessa Kirby - Princess Margaret

[Alex Bailey/Netflix]
[Alex Bailey/Netflix]

What you might know her from: Love/Loss, Great Expectations, The Rise, About time, Queen & Country, Jupiter Ascending, Bone In The Throat, Everest, The Dresser, The Frankenstein Chronicles, Genius, Kill Command, Me Before You.

Vanessa Kirby plays the part of Elizabeth's younger sister, Princess Margaret. The carefree, younger princess is the total opposite to her older sister, and over the course of the series — and as Elizabeth is thrust into the spotlight — the relationship between the two will become more and more strained.

Dame Eileen Atkins - Queen Mary

What you might know her from: Breaking Up, Wolf, Women Talking Dirty, What a Girl Wants, Cold Mountain, Vanity Fair, Ask the Dust, Evening, Last Chance Harvey, Wild Target, Robin Hood, Upstairs Downstairs, Psychoville, Beautiful Creatures, Doc Martin, ChickLit.

Dame Eileen Atkins has the role of Queen Mary, Elizabeth's grandmother and the last link to the Victorian era. Mary is smart, strong willed, distant, but devoted to her duty as a former monarch and advisor to a future one.

The Crown Season 1 has been on Netflix since November 4.


Will you be watching The Crown?


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