As if there wasn’t enough real-life royal drama going on at the moment, Netflix has just announced the end of theirs – The Crown, depicting the ongoing reign of Queen Elizabeth II starting way back in the ‘50s, is going to come to an early end with a fifth and final season. The show, which was always designed to feature an overhaul in cast as it moved from era to era, was originally announced for a fifth and sixth season – but now it’s officially closing out on Season 5. Not only that, but they’ve announced who’ll play ol’ Liz in the final run.

As revealed by the show’s social media accounts, Imelda Staunton will be handed the royal title from Olivia Colman for the final run. “I have loved watching The Crown from the very start,” Staunton said. “As an actor it was a joy to see how both Claire Foy and Olivia Colman brought something special and unique to Peter Morgan’s scripts. I am genuinely honoured to be joining such an exceptional creative team and to be taking The Crown to its conclusion.” Place your bets now as to where the series will go up to in its last string of episodes.

The show featured an all-new cast for 2019’s Season 3, with Helena Bonham Carter, Tobias Menzies, Josh O’Connor and Emerald Fennell among the stars joining Colman. They’re all due to continue in their roles for the upcoming Season 4, which began filming in August 2019 – stay tuned for more news on that front in the coming months, and for other new cast members joining the fifth and final season.

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