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Prince Harry pushed back on criticism that 'The Crown' is misleading: 'It gives you a rough idea'

Zac Ntim   

Prince Harry pushed back on criticism that 'The Crown' is misleading: 'It gives you a rough idea'
  • Prince Harry defended "The Crown" during an interview with James Corden.
  • He said the show is "loosely based on the truth" and accurately portrays the pressure of royal life.
  • Prince Harry also said he wants Damian Lewis to play him in any future fiction works.

Prince Harry has become the first immediate member of the British royal family to defend Netflix's "The Crown," saying the show gives audiences a "rough idea" about the pressures of royal life.

The sprawling historical drama, which focuses on the intimate lives of the British royal family, has faced criticism from British politicians and people close to the royals for its fictional and sometimes unflattering depictions of the royals including the Queen and Prince Charles.

But during a wide-ranging interview with James Corden on "The Late Late Show," Prince Harry said the Netflix drama is "loosely based on the truth," and he prefers "The Crown" to the stories he has seen written about himself and his family in the press.

"They don't pretend to be news. It's fictional," he said. "But it's loosely based on the truth. Of course, it's not strictly accurate, of course not, but loosely it gives you a rough idea about what that lifestyle, the pressures of putting duty and service above family and everything else, what can come from that."

He continued: "I'm way more comfortable with 'The Crown' than I am seeing the stories written about my family or my wife or myself. Because… that [The Crown] is obviously fiction, take it how you will. But this is being reported on as fact because you're supposedly news. I have a real issue with that."

Later during the interview with James Corden, which took place on an open-top bus with the pair touring LA, Prince Harry said that he would like "Homeland" star Damian Lewis to portray him in any future fictional work on his life.

Earlier this year following the premiere of "The Crown" season 4, the British culture secretary Oliver Dowden announced that he would be writing to Netflix to ask the streamer to add a "health warning" disclaimer to episodes of "The Crown" warning audiences that the show is a work of fiction.

Dowden said the disclaimer should be tailored for audience members who didn't live through the events depicted in the show.

He said: "It's a beautifully produced work of fiction, so as with other TV productions, Netflix should be very clear at the beginning it is just that. Without this, I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact."

"The Crown" star Helena Bonham Carter added her voice to Dowden's, saying the show has a "moral responsibility" to tell viewers it is a work of fiction and not historical fact. Bonham Carter has ties to the royals. Her uncle, Mark Bonham Carter, once dated the woman she portrays: Princess Margaret.

In response, representatives for Netflix told Deadline that a disclaimer would not be added to the show because the streamer was confident audiences always understood "The Crown" to be a work of fiction.

"We have always presented 'The Crown' as a drama - and we have every confidence our members understand it's a work of fiction that's broadly based on historical events. As a result, we have no plans - and see no need - to add a disclaimer," the statement read.

Season 4 of "The Crown" takes place in the early 80s and follows the strained relationship of Prince Charles and Diana.


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