‘The Crown’ Season 3 Cast, Release Date: Show To Adopt Salary Parity Following Pay Gap Backlash

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Netflix’s The Crown sparked backlash earlier this week after producers revealed that lead star Claire Foy, who played Queen Elizabeth II for two seasons, was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith, who portrayed Prince Philip. Series producer Suzanne Mackie announced that going forward, the critically acclaimed series will adopt salary parity, adding that no one gets paid more than the Queen.

Smith and Foy, who won a Golden Globe in 2017 for her role as Britain’s ruling monarch, will not be returning for the show’s third season. As the story progresses and the characters age, the show confirmed that they will be changing cast members every two seasons, instead of using prosthetics to make the actors look older.

As early as October last year, Netflix confirmed the new The Crown cast members that will be taking on the main characters previously portrayed by Foy, Smith, and Vanessa Kirby.

Olivia Colman As Queen Elizabeth II

Variety confirmed that Colman will be filling in for Foy as an older Queen Elizabeth for The Crown Seasons 3 and 4. Like Foy, Colman herself is a Golden Globe winner, having earned a best supporting actress win for her role in AMC’s miniseries The Night Manager. She was also nominated for an Emmy for the same role.

On the recast, showrunner Peter Morgan reasoned that one cannot “ask someone to act middle-age.” To remain authentic, the show has to bring in older actors to “bring their own fatigue to it.” The third season will take place between the 1960s and 1980s.

Helena Bonham Carter As Princess Margaret

The Crown Season 2 put its spotlight on Queen Elizabeth II’s younger sister, Princess Margaret, a role that made Vanessa Kirby the show’s breakout star. Kirby confirmed that Bonham Carter was replacing her through an Instagram post with the actress.

The show’s sophomore run shed some light on Margaret’s relationship with Antony Armstrong-Jones, which ended in marriage and the latter earning the title Earl of Snowdon. However, The Crown Season 3 spoilers reveal that fans will see the end of the “extraordinary marriage” of Margaret and Antony.

The recast for the role of Armstrong-Jones, portrayed by Matthew Goode in Season 2, hasn’t been announced as of yet.

Hugh Laurie As Prince Philip

Recent reports indicate that Hugh Laurie has been tapped to take over Smith’s role as Prince Philip in The Crown Season 3. According to Daily Mail, a source said that Laurie’s name has been circling the role. Both Colman and Laurie showed strong performances in AMC’s The Night Manager and The Crown’s bosses would be interested in recreating that dynamic.

Avengers: Age of Ultron actor Paul Bettany was previously lined up to play Prince Philip. However, negotiations for the role reportedly fell through due to scheduling conflicts.

The Crown Season 3 release date has not been confirmed yet, but it is expected to come out in 2019.