A Netflix spokesperson said: “The Crown has always been presented as a drama based on historical events. Series 5 is a fictional dramatization that imagines what might have happened behind closed doors during a momentous decade for the royal family – a which has already been scrutinized and well documented by journalists, biographers and historians.”
The penultimate season of the drama covers the period from 1991 to 1996, meaning the tumultuous collapse of Charles and Diana’s marriage and the role of Camilla Parker Bowles, will be the main plotline running through all ten episodes.
The focus on the fallout from the breakdown of Charles and Diana’s marriage comes at a time when the new king is enjoying a surge in popularity following his accession.
In the past, Netflix has made it clear that The Crown is a dramatic series and has never tried to present it as a documentary account.
It is understood that the description of the show on Netflix will separate The Crown as a drama and that viewers will be directed to other content about the events dramatized in the series.
Dominic West, the actor who plays Prince Charles in the new series, has defended the scripts, which he said were based on “imagined conversations” and stressed he was “evoking” the king, not imitating him.
“I think people understand because the cast has changed every other season that this is not a knockoff,” he said. “This is an evocation of a character. That’s really where the show lives: in the imagined conversations in their private lives, which is something nobody knows.”
He added: “I think that’s what it gets a lot of criticism for. How do you know what they’re talking about in their private life?
“The obvious answer is we don’t, but we have an incredible writer, a playwright who imagines based on exhaustive research, and that’s really part of the fascination of the show.”