The Crown Series 1 – 4 (2016-2020)

Actress Olivia Coleman as Queen Elizabeth II dressed in regimental uniform sitting on a black horse saluting. In the background is a crowd

Olivia Coleman in The Crown (2020) © Netflix

Writer: Peter Morgan

Directors: Stephen Daldry, Benjamin Caron, Philip Martin, Julian Jarrold

Starring: Claire Foy, Matt Smith, Jared Harris, Vanessa Kirby, John Lithgow, Olivia Coleman, Helena Bonham Carter, Tobias Menzies

Production Companies: Left Bank Pictures, Sony Pictures Television Production UK

Kent Locations Used: The Historic Dockyard Chatham, Royal School of Military Engineering (Chatham) Brompton Barracks

The Crown is a Netflix Original ten-part historical drama series focusing on the reign of the Queen Elizabeth II played by Claire Foy in Series One and Two and Olivia Coleman in Series Three and Four. The series delivers a world full of intrigue and revelations from behind the closed doors of Westminster and Buckingham Palace as The Queen steps up to represent the world’s most powerful monarchy and forge relationships with her Prime Ministers including Sir Winston Churchill played by John Lithgow in Series One to Three.

Peter Morgan (The Queen, Frost/Nixon) is writer and creator of The Crown, reportedly the most expensive series to be produced by Netflix, estimated at £100 million at the time of the first series release. Benjamin Caron (Wallander, Scott & Bailey) directs various episodes from Series One through Four while Series One and Two directors include Stephen Daldry (The Reader, The Hours), Philip Martin (Prime Suspect: The Final Act, Hawking) and Julian Jarrold (Becoming Jane, Kinky Boots). Directors for Series Three and Four joining Benjamin Caron include Samuel Donovan (Four Lions, Liar (2017-2020), Jessica Hobbs (Apple Tree Yard, Broadchurch) and Christian Schwochow (Children of Mars, Badbanks).

The Series One and Two cast includes Claire Foy (Wolf Hall, Little Dorrit), Matt Smith (Doctor Who, Pride and Prejudice and Zombies) as Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh, Jared Harris (Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, Mad Men) as King George VI, Vanessa Kirby (About Time, Everest) as Princess Margaret and John Lithgow (Interstellar, Shrek) as Winston Churchill.  A stellar cast stepped into the roles of the Royal Family in Series Three and Four with Queen Elizabeth II played by Oliver Coleman (The Favourite, The Other Boleyn Girl (2008)), Helena Bonham Carter (Enola HolmesSuffragette (2015) as Princess Margaret and Tobias Menzies (Game of Thrones, The Night Manager) as Prince Philip, The Duke of Edinburgh.

The Crown production team chose to visit Kent to film at The Historic Dockyard Chatham during Series One where they filmed a dockside scene on Anchor Wharf after building part of the side of a ship. The Historic Dockyard Chatham dates back to the 17th century and contains over 100 buildings from the Georgian and Victorian periods. The Historic Dockyard Chatham is a popular film location that has previously featured on screen in Suffragette (2015), Downton Abbey (2013) and Les Miserables (2013).

The first series of The Crown was released on Netflix on Friday 4th November 2016.

In Series Four production visited the Royal School of Military Engineering (Chatham) Brompton Barracks to film scenes set in London.  Brompton Barracks is ideally suited as a location to double for iconic London landmarks with a large parade ground, vaulted cellars under the Officer’s Mess, statues, stone bridges, a museum and a large ornate arch.

Series Four will be released on Netflix on Sunday 15th November 2020.

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map. 

 


Henry VIII (1979)

image of a man and women dressed in tudor costumes stood next to each other in front of a pillar

Henry VIII screenshot © BBC

Director: Kevin Billington

Writer: William Shakespeare (play),

Stars: John Stride, Timothy West, Ronald Pickup, Claire Bloom, Julian Glover, Jeremy Kemp, Peter Vaughan

Henry VIII dvd cover- images of two tutor men on a black background. Henry VIII written in white underneath

Henry VIII dvd cover © BBC

Production Company: BBC, Time-Life Television Productions

Kent Locations Used: Hever Castle, Leeds Castle, Penshurst Place

Henry VIII is a BBC television film adaptation of William Shakespeare’s original play which provides a dramatized account of the events surrounding the divorce of Henry VIII from his first wife, Katherine of Aragon.

Originally broadcast in February 1979; the film was produced as part of BBC Shakespeare (1978-85), a series of Shakespeare plays adapted for television.

The film was directed by Kevin Billington (Outside Edge, The Good Soldier) with John Stride (Macbeth, The Omen) playing Henry VIII alongside Timothy West (Crime and Punishment, Eastenders), Ronald Pickup (Best Exotic Marigold Hotel, The Chronicles of Narnia), Claire Bloom (The King’s Speech, Clash of the Titans), Julian Glover (For Your Eyes Only, Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade), Jeremy Kemp (Z-Cars, Space: 1999) and Peter Vaughan (Porridge, Game of Thrones).

The entire film was shot on location at Hever Castle, Leeds Castle and Penshurst Place, which all have an association with the historical figures within the play.

Leeds Castle doubles as Henry VIII’s palace. Both interiors and exteriors are used to create a sense of real grandeur.

Penshurst Place was used for a number of scenes, including Katherine of Aragon’s residence, a council chamber at Westminster. Baron’s Hall was used as a hall in Blackfriars when it announced that Henry and Katherine shall split. One of the halls is used to double as a room in York Place where Cardinal Wolsey holds a ball; this is where Henry VIII and Anne Bullen first meet.

The timber-clad section of Hever Castle is used to double as streets in Westminster where two gentlemen meet to discuss the royal divorce.

Leeds Castle is set in 500 acres of beautiful parkland and formal gardens and has been used in various productions, including the ITV version of Henry VIII (2003), Lady Jane (1987) and Kind Hearts and Coronets (1949) .

Hever Castle is a thirteenth century castle which was once home to Anne Boleyn; it boasts formal Italian gardens and an ornamental lake. This location has also been used in various historical dramas, including Walking through History (2013), Inkheart (2008) and Anne of The Thousand Days (1969).

Penshurst Place is a Medieval and Tudor Fortified Manor set in gorgeous parkland. It is a film friendly location, having been used in notable productions such as Wolf Hall (2015), The Great Fire (2014) and Merlin (2008).

Henry VIII also features in the Kent Film Office Tudor(ish) Trail which celebrates Kent’s Tudor history and film connections.

This film was originally broadcasted on 25th February 1979, and is available to purchase on DVD.

 

For more information about Kent’s Filming History please visit our Movie Map.