Following Queen Elizabeth II’s Thursday death at 96, Netflix’s historical drama centered around Britain’s longest-service monarch’s reign has been paused. A Netflix spokesperson confirmed to The Hill Friday morning that The Crown Season 6 has paused production in honor of the late monarch. Season 5 of the series is set to premiere in November, with Season 6 acting as the show’s final season.
In a statement, the spokesperson said, “as a mark of respect, filming on The Crown was suspended today.” Deadline previously reported that the series would begin filming in August, though it is unclear if that tentative date held. It is unclear when filming will resume on the final season. The Netflix spokesperson added, “filming will also be suspended on the day of Her Majesty The Queen’s funeral,” a date for which Buckingham Palace has yet to announce, though multiple outlets have reported the funeral will take place 11 days after Her Majesty’s Thursday passing.
The decision to suspend pausing isn’t much of a surprise. Back in 2016, Stephen Daldry, who directed several Season 1 episodes, told Deadline that The Crown would suspend filming upon the queen’s death, stating, “none of us know when that time will come but it would be right and proper to show respect to the Queen. It would be a simple tribute and a mark of respect.”
Shortly after the palace announced the Queen’s passing Thursday, Peter Morgan, a writer for the show, said in an email that he believed “we will stop filming out of respect too.” He explained, “The Crown is a love letter to her and I’ve nothing to add for now, just silence and respect.” Meanwhile, a source later revealed to the New York Post that The Crown has its “own version of Operation London Bridge,” the set of protocols for handling the Queen’s death. The source added that the show’s version of Operation London Bridge “is particularly pertinent for if we are filming will shut down immediately if we are in production, for at least a week. There would also be lots of discussion about when to restart.”
Both the upcoming fifth and sixths seasons of the hit Netflix historical drama are set to bring the series into more modern times, though it has long been planned that the series would not catch up to the present day. Instead, after exploring the ’90s in Season 5, The Crown Season 6 is set to document the Queen’s reign and the royal family throughout the early 2000s, with the series ending before more recent royal events, such as William and Kates wedding and Meghan Markle’s introduction to the royal family. The Crown Season 5 premieres this October on Netflix.