Netflix Offers First Look at 'The Crown’s' New Prince Philip

Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip in "The Crown" Season 3 (Photo: Courtesy of Netflix)
Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip in "The Crown" Season 3 (Photo: Courtesy of Netflix)

Filming is under way on the third season of Netflix’s award-winning period drama The Crown, and expectations are high as the series ages up its entire Royal Family by way of recasting them all.

Yes, Season 3 will mark the first outing for the next stage of The Crown’s cast, as Claire FoyMatt SmithVanessa KirbyMatthew Goode and others all stepping down to make way for the next (older) generation of royals.

The basic premise of The Crown is to tell the life story of Queen Elizabeth II over six seasons, with each installment documenting roughly a decade of the monarch’s record-breaking reign. When Netflix originally greenlit the series, it was decided that rather than cast one group of actors and age them up with prosthetics, make-up or CGI as the series progressed, they’d simply rotate through several different set of age-appropriate people. Foy and Smith played Elizabeth and Philip during the couple’s early days, and the new cast will take over as the show enters mid-1960s.

Award-winning Broadchurch actress Olivia Colman will replace Foy as Queen Elizabeth, while Tobias Menzies, probably best known for his recent turns in period romance Outlander and horror series The Terror, will play Prince Phillip. Helena Bonham-Carter will play the Queen’s sister Princess Margaret, joined by Ben Daniels as Margaret’s husband Anthony Armstrong-Jones, Lord Snowden, Call the Midwife’s Erin Doherty as Princess Anne and The Durrells in Corfu’s Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles.

Over the past few months, Netflix has been giving us teasers of the new Royals – releasing updated character shots for pretty much everyone. All, save one. We hadn’t gotten a look at the series’ new Philip yet – likely due to the fact that it took the series quite a while to cast Menzies in the role. Until this week.

The one thing that ties all these first look images together – other than the fact that they’re our first glimpses of these new incarnations of the characters – is that they each carry a one-word descriptor with them. Ostensibly, this means we’re probably meant to read something into that. Philips, as we can see above is “Ambition”. Elizabeth’s is “Patience”. Margaret’s is “Hope”.  And Lord Snowden’s is “Hurt”.

Are these the themes for each character’s Season 3 arc? It seems distinctly plausible, given that a big story in Season 3 will doubtless focus on Margaret and Tony’s divorce, which would certainly cover both the hope and hurt angles for both parties. But what of Elizabeth and Philip? In terms of big picture events: The two should celebrate their silver wedding anniversary at some point during this season (I think?), and their firstborn son will be officially invested as Prince of Wales. Not a lot to go on, but that’s the fun in speculation, right?

Season 3 of The Crown will premiere at some point in (probably early) 2019. What would you like to see? Are you looking forward to this new era?  Let’s discuss in the comments.