The makers of The Crown shocked fans earlier this year by announcing its final season.
The award-winning period drama series about the reign of Queen Elizabeth II of the United Kingdom premiered in 2016, with Claire Foy leading the original cast.
What surprised fans, however, was the news that The Crown would be wrapping up its story earlier than originally intended.
The show’s creator and writer Peter Morgan had always been open that he planned for the series to run for six seasons.
In a statement earlier this year, Morgan said: “At the outset I had imagined The Crown running for six seasons but now that we have begun work on the stories for season five it has become clear to me that this is the perfect time and place to stop. I’m grateful to Netflix and Sony for supporting me in this decision.”
However, it’s now emerged that The Crown could still continue away from Netflix.
The CEO of production company Left Bank Pictures, Andy Harries, admitted to Deadline: “It’s quite well known that Left Bank retained the rights to The Crown… The plan is ongoing.”
For now, though, the show’s home remains Netflix.
Harries said: “It’s still exclusively on Netflix and it stays there for the moment.”
What this does mean is that if another broadcaster or streaming service wanted to commission a sixth season of The Crown, the production company are legally entitled to make this happen without needing Netflix’s permission.
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Although The Crown writer Peter Morgan told Entertainment Weekly a while back: “I feel uncomfortable writing about events within a certain time period.”
Morgan explained: “I think there’s a certain amount of time within which, if you write about it, what you do instantly becomes journalistic. Because it’s too close to the moment.”
Imelda Staunton is expected to begin filming the fifth season of The Crown later this year, although the shoot may be delayed due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.
The Crown is available to buy on DVD on Amazon.