The Crown: Netflix releases first look at Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth II

The Crown season 5
(Image credit: Netflix)

Netflix has released the first look at The Crown season 5, offering a glimpse of Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth II.

Claire Foy portrayed the current monarch in the show's first two seasons, with Olivia Colman taking over for seasons three and four. Now, Staunton – best recognized as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter movies – will take the reins as the reigning queen of this rainy country (too much?). 

Joining Staunton in The Crown season 5 are a host of recognizable names, including Game of Thrones actor Jonathan Pryce as Prince Phillip, Phantom Thread scene-stealer Lesley Manville as Princess Margaret, Tenet's Elizabeth Debicki as Diana, Princess of Wales, and The Wire's Dominic West as Prince Charles.

The last we saw, the Royals were about to enter the '90s, a turbulent decade for the Firm. The year 1992 was particularly hard for the Windsors, with the Queen herself once labeling it "annus horribilis" (horrible year). Why? For starters, Princess Anne divorced Captain Mark Phillips, Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson announced their split, Charles and Diana made their separation public (though did not divorce until 1996), and, on top of all the relationship drama, Windsor Castle caught fire. Expect to see all that on-screen in the next season.

The Crown was initially intended to finish with its fifth season but is now set to continue into season 6. Staunton will portray Queen Elizabeth II in both seasons – and no doubt fans will be clamoring for the show to return a few years down the line to continue the story of the family.

There's currently no release date on the new season, but filming kicked off earlier in July following a lengthy break – which was always intended, even before COVID. New episodes are expected to be streaming in 2022.

Elsewhere, Netflix has a whole lot of shows returning, including The Witcher season 2, Umbrella Academy season 3, Sex Education season 3, You season 3, and Stranger Things season 4. Click through any of those links for more information on any of those shows. And for even more, check out our list of the best Netflix shows streaming now.

Jack Shepherd
Freelance Journalist

Jack Shepherd is the former Senior Entertainment Editor of GamesRadar. Jack used to work at The Independent as a general culture writer before specializing in TV and film for the likes of GR+, Total Film, SFX, and others. You can now find Jack working as a freelance journalist and editor.