The Crown to bring more historical locations to life with “more ambitious” season two special effects

The visual effects team behind Netflix's royal drama say that they are hard at work helping producers tell the story of Queen Elizabeth's reign

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One of the under-appreciated virtues of royal – and royally expensive – Netflix drama The Crown is its use of visual effects, which allowed the filmmakers to set the story in famous real-life locations that are unavailable for filming.

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“Given the subject matter, there are a lot of places [in The Crown] that we can’t film,” visual effects supervisor Ben Turner of effects house One of Us told RadioTimes.com. “So we’re enabling the production to have the scale and scope that they need to tell the story, but without going to Buckingham Palace or Downing Street, all of those sorts of places.” 

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Turner says that the scale of that visual ambition will only grow in season two, with Turner revealing that the upcoming series is doubling down on the background VFX to bring to life even more historical locations.

The Crown visual effects company One of Us reveal what is filmed and what is animated in the lavish Netflix drama

“I think it’s an aspect of the success of the visual effects on the first series is that the production are now thinking bigger and being much more confident, and they know what they’re capable of,” Turner said.

“So yes, season two is bigger in many ways, and more ambitious.”

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Later while speaking at London’s VFX Festival, he added, “We have more shots, and bigger setpieces, and a more ambitious brief generally.

“Which is great, because it means the production now trust us, and we can help them find a way to bring all their huge visual ambitions to life.”

Sounds like the next series could be their crowning glory.

Ben Turner was speaking at The VFX Festival run by Escape Studios. The company teaches students the art of film-making and specifically VFX/animation.   

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The Crown series 1 is available to stream on Netflix now