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The Crown Fans Just Got Totally Unexpected News

Rise up, The Crown hive: Series creator Peter Morgan and Netflix have a new royal edict to announce. 

Earlier this year, Morgan made the surprising decision to end the show with the fifth season, even though he'd previously planned on following the stories of Queen Elizabeth and her family for six seasons. However, on July 9, 2020, the Twitter account for Netflix UK & Ireland revealed in a series of posts that The Crown will get a season 6 after all.

When Morgan originally announced his intentions to end The Crown after season 5, he detailed the reasoning behind the decision, noting that bringing the series to a close earlier than intended felt like the right move. "I had imagined The Crown running for six seasons but now that we have begun work on the stories for season five it has become clear to me that this is the perfect time and place to stop," he said in January 2020 (via The Hollywood Reporter).

Clearly, Morgan took another look under the hood and found that his original plan was the best one all along. Netflix UK & Ireland shared in a follow-up tweet confirmation from Morgan that he and the Crown team have reversed course on their plan to end a season early: "As we started to discuss the storylines for [season] 5, it soon became clear that in order to do justice to the richness and complexity of the story, we should go back to the original plan and do six seasons."

Even though the reinstated sixth season still likely means The Crown will end before we reach the Meghan Markle and Prince Harry era, it feels like a win for fans who can't get enough of the understated Royal drama. 

With the show's endpoint now set in stone, exactly what can we expect from The Crown's final three seasons?

What's in store for the final three seasons of The Crown?

The fourth season of The Crown will see Olivia Coleman return as Queen Elizabeth, as well as Helena Bonham Carter and Tobias Menzies reprise their roles as Princess Margaret and the Queen's husband, Prince Philip, respectively. The season is expected to cover the royal family from the late 1970s through the 1980s. Major plot points are said to center around the Queen's relationship with Great Britain's first female prime minister, Margaret Thatcher (Gillian Anderson), and the arrival of Diana Spencer (Emma Corrin), aka Princess Diana. A release date hasn't been set for the newest installment of The Crown, but we do know that filming for season 4 wrapped up in March 2020.

Although not many details have been confirmed for the show's fifth and sixth seasons, we do know that Oscar nominees Imelda Staunton and Lesley Manville will be taking over the roles of Queen Elizabeth and Princess Margaret. The final seasons are expected to take the royals into the early 2000s, although Morgan confirmed that even though he's going back to his six-season plan, that doesn't mean The Crown is going to come any closer to the 2010s (via Variety).

The '90s and early '00s were a tumultuous time for the Royal Family that saw multiple very public breakups and the deaths of Princess Diana, Princess Margaret, and the Queen Mother. As for how The Crown will portray all these events, well, we'll have to watch the final three seasons to find out.