EXCLUSIVE: The Crown’s young royals chat to The Weekly

Netflix‘s The Crown has just released the last episode of the series after six seasons. The final season of the royal drama tackles the more contemporary history of the crown – Princess Diana’s passing, Prince William and Prince Harry’s teen years and the famous love story of how William met Catherine Middleton.

For the show’s final four episodes, The Crown’s showrunners put out an open casting call for Prince Harry (Luther Ford), Prince William (Ed McVey) and Catherine Middleton (Meg Bellamy) – ultimately plucking three actors from relative obscurity to portray the young royals.

“It’s one of those things you never think anything is going to happen,” Ed McVey, who plays young Prince William, recalls about his audition process.

The Crown season six
Ed McVey never thought he would land the role of a young Prince William. (Credit: Netflix)

“Months go by, you’re in a room with 17 other Williams that look 30 times more William than you think you do,” Ed jokes. “You’re on tenterhooks, so getting that role was a big relief.”

And whilst the resemblance between Ed and his royal counterpart can only be described as uncanny – he insists that before landing the role, he never saw a likeness between himself and Prince William.

“I only saw [a resemblance] a handful of times on set,” the young actor admits. 

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Ed McVey and Luther Ford were tasked with bringing the devastating aftermath of Princess Diana’s passing to life as Prince William and Prince Harry. (Credit: Netflix)

However, simply bearing a resemblance to Prince William was just a minor part of the role. Ed was tasked with bringing to life the unimaginable emotional turmoil of the aftermath of William’s mother, Princess Diana.

Whilst the first part of The Crown season six saw the events leading up to the tragic passing of Princess Diana on August 31, 1997 – part two takes a closer look at the personal ramifications of her death on her two children.

“I wasn’t alive when Diana passed away,” Ed says. “But in a way I found that quite helpful because I didn’t have an understanding of it.”

“I was able to imagine what it would be like to lose a parent,” the young actor says. 

Ed admits that whilst he would have loved to work alongside Elizabeth Debicki, it helped him prepare for his role as Prince William. (Credit: Netflix)

Ed also says that while he didn’t get to work alongside Australian actress Elizabeth Debicki, who portrays Princess Diana, that in part, this helped him prepare for his role.

“It’s a shame, I would have loved to work with her, but I was able to build my own personal banner that affects the character I was building,” Ed says.

The last episodes of The Crown also follow the fairytale-esque love story between Prince William and Catherine Middleton at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland where they were both students.

Like her co-star Ed Mcvey, Meg Bellamy responded to an open casting call and landed the role of Catherine Middleton.

“Pinch me please…So excited to announce I will be playing Kate Middleton in season six of Netflix’s The Crown,” Meg wrote on her Instagram at the time.

Whilst the exact details or William and Catherine’s meeting have never officially been confirmed, The Crown does take some artistic licence in its final season. This includes a fictional story of a young Catherine Middleton meeting Princess Diana (Elizabeth Debicki) in London. 

As well as this, The Crown leans into the tale that Catherine chased her future husband through changing schools and taking up similar hobbies. In one scene Carole Middleton (Eve Best) admits to her daughter that she played a part in orchestrating her fairytale meeting with Prince William.

Fact or fiction, the final few episodes of the seminal drama pays adequate homage to the burgeoning era of the young royals in the early 2000s with an aptly cast trio who share a similar chemistry and magic as their real life royal counterparts did.

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