The Crown: Netflix has 'no plans' for fiction warning

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The CrownImage source, Netflix
Image caption,
The relationship between Prince Charles and Diana, Princess of Wales, is covered in series four

Netflix says it will not warn viewers of The Crown some scenes are fiction.

Responding to calls for a warning from Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden, the streaming giant said the series has always been billed as a drama.

"As a result we have no plans, and see no need, to add a disclaimer," it said.

Mr Dowden earlier said younger viewers "may mistake fiction for fact" when watching the fourth series, which shows the breakdown of the marriage between the Prince and Princess of Wales.

The Crown's creator Peter Morgan has called the show "an act of creative imagination" with a "constant push-pull" between research and drama.

Its latest series has attracted criticism from some quarters for its depiction of royal events - in particular the breakdown of the marriage of Prince Charles and Diana.

The culture secretary said last week Netflix should make clear the show was fiction.

"I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact," Oliver Dowden told the Mail on Sunday.

He said Netflix's "beautifully produced work of fiction... should be very clear at the beginning it is just that".

But the streaming giant said in a statement, first reported by the Mail: "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."

Earl Spencer, brother of the late Diana, Princess of Wales, previously told ITV's Lorraine Kelly he was worried some viewers would take the storylines "as gospel".

"I think it would help The Crown an enormous amount if, at the beginning of each episode, it stated that: 'This isn't true but it is based around some real events'," he said.

Image source, Netflix
Image caption,
Emma Corrin successfully transforms her character into the glamorous Princess Diana overshadowing Prince Charles, played by Josh O'Connor

Former Buckingham Palace press secretary Dickie Arbiter has accused the show of "stretching dramatic licence to the extreme".

"It's a hatchet job on Prince Charles and a bit of a hatchet job on Diana," Mr Arbiter told the BBC.

Meanwhile, ex-royal correspondent Jennie Bond told the BBC Newscast podcast she feared some viewers might treat the show "as a documentary".