The Crown: Lesley Manville to replace Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret in final season

Jacob Stolworthy
·2-min read
Getty Images / Netflix
Getty Images / Netflix

The Crown's final season is slowly taking shape, with reports emerging of who will replace Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret.

It’s currently known that Imelda Staunton will play Queen Elizabeth II in the fifth and final season of Netflix‘s hit show.

Now, it's been announced by Netflix that Lesley Manville will play her sister, the role assumed by Vanessa Kirby in the first two seasons.

Manville, who was Oscar-nominated for her supporting role in Paul Thomas Anderson’s 2017 film Phantom Thread, is said to have been producers' "first choice”, according to The Sun.

The actor has collaborated with director Mike Leigh numerous times, on projects including High Hopes, Secrets & Lies and Another Year.

Manville has had an extensive stage career since the 1970s, and was nominated for an Olivier Award in 2011.

Her other screen credits include Maleficent, starring Angelina Jolie, and the BBC sitcom Mum.

Manville and Staunton have worked together as recently as 2019 – both appeared in Maleficent sequel, Mistress of Evil.

The Crown‘s showrunner Peter Morgan has been recasting roles as the royal characters get older.

Lesley Manville in BBC sitcom ‘Mum’ (Big Talk Productions)
Lesley Manville in BBC sitcom ‘Mum’ (Big Talk Productions)

Speaking about his decision, he said: “You can’t ask someone to act middle-aged. Someone has to bring their own fatigue to it. The feelings we all have as 50-year-olds are different than the feelings we all have as 30-year-olds.“

There is currently no word on who will replace Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip.

The fourth season, starring Olivia Colman, Bonham Carter and Gillian Anderson as Margaret Thatcher, will be released later this year.

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