Why The Crown’s Gillian Anderson Thinks It Would Be ‘Fascinating’ To Play The Queen

The Crown Margaret Thatcher Gillian Anderson Netflix
(Image credit: Des Willie / Netflix)

The Crown is coming back, and fans can expect to see some new faces in the new season. While Queen Elizabeth II will remain the same from last season, Gillian Anderson will be playing Margaret Thatcher in Season 4. That said, the X-Files and Sex Education actress thinks it would be “fascinating” to play the Queen.

Yes, the Queen, previously played by Claire Foy and currently played by Olivia Colman. Meanwhile, Season 4 will be the tale of two Margarets as Gillian Anderson makes her debut as Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Well ahead of the upcoming season, Olivia Colman raved over Anderson’s performance as Thatcher. If Anderson got the chance to play someone else, it would be between Queen Elizabeth II and Princess Margaret.

The Crown has already recast Princess Margaret for the third and final time with Oscar nominee Lesley Manville of The Phantom Thread. Gillian Anderson is readying for the world to take in her performance as Margaret Thatcher. So, why would Anderson have been fascinated to take on the role of the Queen? Anderson told Variety:

Margaret would be a lot of fun to play[.] She reminds me a lot of [‘A Streetcar Named Desire’s’] Blanche Dubois, who I played. I so rarely get to play anybody who doesn’t get opinionated and isn’t forceful, somehow. The fact that she [the Queen] is bound to serve and keep her feelings and thoughts to herself [is something] I struggle with, so I’m sure it would be fascinating to have to do that as a character. But yeah, probably Margaret.

Gillian Anderson considered Princess Margaret as someone she would be interested in playing as well as Queen Elizabeth II herself. I can honestly see Anderson playing both real-life roles with aplomb. Anderson acknowledges that playing the Queen would be a bit more of a change from her usual roles where her characters openly speak their mind. The Queen, by virtue of her position, has to temper that more.

As for Gillian Anderson’s fellow newcomer to The Crown, Emma Corrin has a similar answer to the other character she would like to play. Corrin will be taking on Princess Diana, who makes her debut on the super-expensive series in Season 4. It will be Corrin’s first and only season playing the part. Elizabeth Debicki will play Diana in the fifth and sixth seasons of the series. On playing another role, Corrin picked:

Margaret! But then I feel like Margaret and Diana are quite similar in some ways, in their personalities…and being a bit of a rule-breaker.

Princess Margaret is a two-for-two with the Crown newcomers. In an interesting Princess Margaret related tidbit, Helena Bonham Carter revealed that she sought out Margaret’s spirit for her permission to play her. Gillian Anderson may have gone through a different process in preparing to play It the late Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Whatever the case, Anderson is playing Thatcher in Season 4.

It will be a more than a minute before fans of the royal drama get to see Season 5 of The Crown, so savor the excitement of the upcoming season. Production on Season 5 is not slated to begin until June of next year (2021). The Crown’s fourth season will premiere on Sunday, November 15, on Netflix as one of this fall’s premieres. Season 4 is one of the many new TV shows arriving on the streaming giant this year.

Britt Lawrence

Like a contented Hallmark movie character, Britt happily lives in the same city she grew up in. Along with movies and television, she is passionate about competitive figure skating. She has been writing about entertainment for 5 years, and as you may suspect, still finds it as entertaining to do as when she began.