Love him or hate him, Prince Philip is integral to Netflix’s The Crown, and he’s not going anywhere anytime soon. Since the next season of the show will shift forward in time—tapping older actors to play the same characters—fans have been spending most of their time wondering who will be taking over from the actors we’ve come to love. We already know that Olivia Colman has been chosen to play Elizabeth II (inheriting the part from Claire Foy,) and Helena Bonham Carter has all but confirmed she’ll be notorious party girl Princess Margaret, following original Margaret Vanessa Kirby. And on Saturday, we learned that the next addition to the cast might be an Avenger.
The Hollywood Reporterwrites that BAFTA nominee Paul Bettany is currently close to sealing a deal to take over the part from Matt Smith, though neither his reps nor the streaming service would officially confirm the news.
Bettany as the Duke of Edinburgh would be an. . . interesting choice. The actor traditionally plays very nice characters; his “Well, I was born yesterday” at the end of Avengers: Age of Ultron is one of the funniest, sweetest line readings of the whole Marvel series. The Crown’s Philip, on the other hand, is much more of a firebrand, taking charge from Elizabeth when he sees fit, obsessing over getting his way with small arguments, and generally driving devoted viewers insane. Maybe Bettany would warm to the challenge—he certainly looks a lot like Philip did during the era in which Season 3 would be set, most likely the late 60s and early 70s. Just adorn him with a few medals, and you’ve got a prince.
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