The cast of the sixth and final season of the Emmy Award-winning Netflix series The Crown has been photographed on set — and we’re getting our first glimpse of the new Kate Middleton and Prince William.
Chronicling the epic saga of the British royal family, the forthcoming season will follow the early days of the Prince and Princess of Wales’s love story. The couple met while studying at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, circa 2001, before beginning to date in 2003. Portrayed by Ed McVey and Meg Bellamy, the behind-the-scenes shots capture the actors filming at the college — and they draw an uncanny resemblance to the pair of young royals.
The show is currently in production after filming was halted in September following the death of Queen Elizabeth II out of respect for the late monarch. “As a mark of respect, filming on The Crown was suspended today,” Netflix said in a statement acquired by the Hollywood Reporter at the time. “Filming will also be suspended on the day of Her Majesty the Queen’s funeral.”
That same month, the streamer announced The Crown had found their Prince William and Kate Middleton for the series’ sixth season. According to Deadline, producers casted two actors to play William throughout time periods. Rufus Kampa will assume the role of Prince William at age 15 — the age of the royal when his mother Princess Diana died in a tragic car accident.
Kampa will be replaced later in the season by McVey, who will portray the former Duke of Cambridge in his late teen and early adult years, during his courtship with a young Kate Middleton, set to be played by Bellamy.
The Queen was being previously portrayed by Claire Foy in the first two seasons, and Olivia Colman in seasons 3 and 4. Next, Harry Potter actress Imelda Staunton played Queen Elizabeth in the series’ fifth season and will continue in season 6.
“I have loved watching The Crown from the very start,” said Staunton in a statement. “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 honored to be joining such an exceptional creative team and to be taking The Crown to its conclusion.”
The series introduced a young Lady Diana in season 4, with Emma Corrin starring as the “People’s Princess” opposite Josh O’ Connor’s Prince Charles. Elizabeth Debicki took the reins as Princess Diana for seasons 5 and will continue for 6, with Dominic West as Prince Charles.
Jonathan Pryce will continue to follow Tobias Menzies as Prince Philip, while Lesley Manville will continue in her role as Princess Margaret, following Helena Bonham Carter.
Season 5 highlighted the royal family in the early-to-mid 1990s, likely focusing on the Prince and Princess of Wales’s failing marriage, separation in 1992 and subsequent divorce in 1996.
The final season of The Crown is set to hit Netflix later this year. And we can. not. wait.
Stay tuned for further developments.