Who should replace Josh O'Connor as Prince Charles in The Crown season 5?
The Netflix drama will need a new actor to play Prince Charles for the final two seasons. We have some helpful suggestions.
Josh O'Connor was absolutely the perfect choice to play Prince Charles in The Crown – but as he comes to the end of his run after season four, we're starting to wonder who will take on the role for seasons five and six as the Prince of Wales ages up.
We do already know that Imelda Staunton will play Charles's mum, Queen Elizabeth II. Lesley Manville is also confirmed to play his aunt, Princess Margaret, and we've made some suggestions about who should play Prince Philip.
So who'd be a good pick to play Charles? The final two seasons of the Netflix drama are expected to pick up the story in 1990 and cover the next couple of decades, so we're looking for an actor who can play the heir to the throne from around the age of 42 onwards. For reference, here's how he looked in 1991:
With that in mind, RadioTimes.com has rounded up some brilliant candidates. Casting directors, take note:
The BAFTA-winning English actor – who is known for Succession, Ripper Street, Quiz, Frost/Nixon, and the 2005 Pride & Prejudice movie – would be an excellent choice to play Prince Charles. We know he can do posh English; we know he's a talented actor; and we know (from Succession) that he can perfectly play a would-be heir to the throne who feels overlooked. Plus, he's about the right age – and he even has the right kind of look.
While Stephen Mangan is best known for his comic roles (Green Wing, Alan Partridge and more), he has also made forays into drama – recently starring as Nathan in The Split. We mainly included him on this list because the moment we thought of it, we could just see it. Can you?
This would be a pretty A-List casting – but then again, The Crown has pulled in plenty of big names already. The Oscar-nominated, Emmy and Olivier-winning actor's credits already include The Imitation Game, Sherlock, Patrick Melrose and Doctor Strange, and he clearly enjoys taking on a wide range of projects – so could he play Prince Charles? He could certainly get the royal accent and mannerisms spot-on, even if the physical resemblance isn't quite there.
Adam Godley is best known internationally for playing Pogo in The Umbrella Academy, Elliott Schwartz in Breaking Bad, and Nigel in Suits; he's also a highly-respected stage actors with four Olivier nominations to his name. Admittedly he's the oldest actor on this list by quite a few years, which might rule him out to play Prince Charles. However, we hope he won't mind us saying: he really does have the ears for it.
English actor Damian Lewis has previously played King Henry VIII in Wolf Hall – and perhaps it's time for him to play another royal role? The Golden Globe winner, who has also starred in Billions, Band of Brothers, and Homeland, is based mainly in the UK with wife Helen McCrory; and with a little hair dye or a wig, he could certainly be transformed into Prince Charles.
Tom Hiddleston is the youngest choice on our list, and it's true that he may not be quite old enough to play Prince Charles in the final two seasons of The Crown. But the Loki actor, who won a Golden Globe for his star role in The Night Manager, would be an intriguing casting – which is why we couldn't resist putting him on the list.
He may not quite have that Prince Charles 'look', but Jude Law deserves a spot on the list. The Oscar-nominated actor (Cold Mountain; The Talented Mr Ripley) has increasingly swapped the big screen for the small screen in recent years, starring in The New Pope and upcoming Sky drama The Third Day.
Perhaps a slightly left-field suggestion, but we were excited when we thought of it. The actor (of Line of Duty, Four Lions, Whitechapel, and Misfits) would have to swap his Blackpool accent for a posh royal one, but we'd love to see him take on the role of Prince Charles.
Christian Bale is, as everyone says, a master of transformation. The Oscar-winning British actor is a big-hitter, with credits including Vice, The Big Short, American Hustle, The Fighter, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight and American Psycho – but could he be tempted to take on a TV role for the first time since the '90s?
The Crown season 4 is expected to air in late 2020, with season 5 in 2022. Looking for something else to watch? Check out our guide to the best TV series on Netflix and best movies on Netflix, or visit our TV Guide.