The Crown sees surge in viewers after death of Queen Elizabeth II

Viewership for Netflix series chronicling the life of the monarch rises up to 800% in the UK, with huge numbers watching in the US, France and Australia

Viewership of Netflix’s hit series The Crown skyrocketed around the world over the weekend following the death of Queen Elizabeth II.

The Crown chronicles the life of the Queen over several decades, beginning in the late 1940s before her father King George VI died and she ascended to the throne. The award-winning series, which premiered in 2016, has garnered huge viewership and critical acclaim for Netflix.

Queen Elizabeth passed away on 8 September, ending a historic 70-year reign. Her death has prompted emotional reactions inside the UK and across the world. In Britain, a 10-day mourning period has been announced and the Queen’s coffin was due to lie in state in London from Wednesday to Monday, when her funeral will take place.

Between 9 and 11 September, The Crown’s viewership rose more than 800% in the United Kingdom compared with the previous Friday to Sunday period, according to data from Whip Media.

In the US, viewership more than quadrupled during this timeframe, while in France The Crown had more than three times the viewers it did the previous weekend.

Globally, viewership was nearly four times higher this past weekend than it was the previous weekend. At the time of writing, The Crown was among the top ten trending TV shows on Netflix Australia.

Following news of the Queen’s death, Netflix last week confirmed it would pause production on its fifth season of The Crown, which was due to portray the royal family through to the early 2000s.

Meanwhile, season five of the hit series is set to premiere in November and will depict the early to mid 1990s. Imelda Staunton will take on the role of the Queen, which has been previously played by Claire Foy and Olivia Colman.

The series won 11 Emmys in 2021, including outstanding drama series. It won two Emmys in 2020, five in 2018 and three in 2017.

The critically acclaimed show was originally intended to end after its fifth series, but a sixth has now been announced. Set to cover the events of the 21st century, it has cast three newcomers in key roles: Meg Bellamy, 19, a former head girl at St Crispin’s school in Wokingham, Berkshire, was picked to play Kate Middleton after submitting a self-taped audition after a casting call put out on social media.

Also making their screen debuts will be Ed McVey, 21, and Rufus Kampa, 16, who will both play young versions of the Princess of Wales’s now-husband, Prince William.

• This article was amended on 13 September 2022. A previous version said that the fifth season of The Crown was to be its last; it will in fact run to a sixth season.


Emily Wind

The GuardianTramp

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