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The Crown Selects New Prince Charles, Queen Mother For Season 3

Say hello to the new members of Netflix's royal family

The Crown has selected the two actors who will take over the roles of Prince Charles and the Queen Mother for its upcoming third season, which will feature a host of fresh faces as the drama series shifts into a new decade in its narrative. 

As announced by The Hollywood Reporter, Josh O'Connor (Florence Foster Jenkins) is set to portray Prince Charles in The Crown season 3, and Marion Bailey (Allied) is on board for the Queen Mother. O'Connor replaces Julian Baring, while Bailey succeeds Victoria Hamilton. 

O'Connor expressed his excitement about being a part of The Crown, especially now as the story takes a turn into the more tumultuous era of British history. 

"Seasons 3 and 4 will follow some of the most turbulent events in the Prince of Wales' life and our national story, and I'm excited to be bringing to life the man in the midst of it all," the actor said at the time of his casting announcement. "I'm very aware it's a formidably talented family to be joining, but reliably informed I have the ears for the part and will fit right in."

Bailey offered similar sentiments, also noting that she understands the responsibility she holds in grabbing the baton from her predecessor Hamilton and offering a fan-pleasing performance as the new Queen Mother. 

"Wonderful to be joining The Crown. It's a brilliant show, and we have a tough act to follow, but what a gift to be playing the fascinating and greatly loved Queen Mother," said Bailey. "Thrilled to be on board and working with such a top-notch team."

It's assumed that both O'Connor and Bailey will stay attached to The Crown through season 4, as the show began this first round of recasting following season 2. 

Ted Sarandos, the chief content officer for Netflix, previously explained that the show will follow Queen Elizabeth (formerly played by Claire Foy, now portrayed by Olivia Colman) through her life to the current day. The plan is to split The Crown into six seasons, a season for each decade of Her Majesty's life after the age of 29, and "make the whole show [run] over eight to 10 years." 

O'Connor and Bailey join fellow new Crown cast members Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip (taking over from Matt Smith) and Helena Bonham Carter as the Queen's sister Princess Margaret (replacing Vanessa Kirby). 

Unlike some of the unsavory reactions fans had to Colman's casting as Queen Elizabeth, response to O'Connor's casting in particular has been largely positive. 

"He's excellent in The Durrells!! Can't wait to see him in this role !" one fan wrote on Twitter, referencing the star's role as Lawrence Durrell in the British comedy-drama series The Durrells in Corfu. Another tweeted, "That is the best casting decision so far."

See? Sometimes actor replacements really can make a TV series better

Now, all that's left to do is wait to discover who will play Princess Diana. The Crown will introduce Diana in season 3, and she'll play an even more important role in seasons 4 and 5, according to series producers.

The Crown season 3 will launch on Netflix in 2019.