The Crown star Matt Smith on what he really thinks of Prince Philip’s famous gaffes

The Doctor Who actor says the Duke of Edinburgh's un-PC outbursts show him to be a fascinating outsider ahead of the launch of the epic Netflix drama this week

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Former Doctor Who actor Matt Smith discovered his inner royalist while playing the Duke of Edinburgh in The Crown, the epic Netflix drama about the life of Queen Elizabeth II.

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Smith is a young Philip who is about to marry the monarch-to-be and faces the challenge of conjoining himself to a woman who is expected to be both his wife and his sovereign.

There was, as he reveals in this exclusive interview with RadioTimes.com (below), another issue – the young Philip was extremely dashing.

“People always say to me he was so handsome and I go ‘Oh, thanks!’” Smith tells us with a laugh.

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But what about the royal’s famous un-PC gaffes? Well, apparently they didn’t surface much in his earlier days as a consort but Smith says the blunders make him a more fascinating person.

“What’s interesting about him is that he has always spoken his mind and has never been afraid to say what he thinks and was certainly in the early days a bit of an outsider, a bit of a maverick. And to a certain extent he still is. He has always been a forward thinker. He’s always telling [the Queen] ‘let’s think outside the box’.”

Watch our exclusive interview below:

Over the course of 10 episodes, The Crown follows the history of the Queen’s reign through political and personal turmoil and will be released on Netflix on Friday 4th November.

Based on Peter Morgan’s play The Audience (which starred Helen Mirren for its first run), the series follows the Queen of England’s interactions with various post-war Prime Ministers over her life, with the first batch of episodes focusing on her coronation and early relationship with Winston Churchill played by John Lithgow.

Future series will go on to explore subsequent decades in the monarch’s life.

When announcing the casting, Netflix described the series as “the inside story of two of the most famous addresses in the world – Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street – and the intrigues, love lives and machinations behind the great events that shaped the second half of the 20th century”.

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Read interviews with The Crown creator Peter Morgan and stars Claire Foy and Matt Smith in this week’s issue of Radio Times, in shops and on the Apple Newsstand from Tuesday 1 November. As an added bonus, every reader will be able to claim a special Netflix gift subscription to mark the start of the new royal drama.