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Netflix says there is 'no need' to add fiction disclaimer to episodes of The Crown

The Culture Secretary has said viewers could confuse fact and fiction.

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Emma Corrin as Diana (Netflix)

Emma Corrin as Diana (Netflix)

Emma Corrin as Diana (Netflix)

Netflix has said it has “no plans – and sees no need” to add a disclaimer to The Crown to explain it is a work of fiction.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden has previously said he fears viewers of the lavish royal drama could be in danger of mistaking fiction for fact without a warning at the beginning of episodes.

It is understood the streaming service has received a private letter from Mr Dowden, and has sent a private response.

Mr Dowden previously told the Mail on Sunday: “It’s a beautifully produced work of fiction, so as with other TV productions, Netflix should be very clear at the beginning it is just that.

“Without this, I fear a generation of viewers who did not live through these events may mistake fiction for fact.”

Helena Bonham Carter, who plays Princess Margaret in the third and fourth series, said the show has a “moral responsibility” to make it clear to viewers it is a drama and not historical fact.

In an interview recorded for The Crown’s official podcast after filming on season four finished earlier this year, Bonham Carter discussed the differences between “our version” and the “real version”.

She said: “I do feel very strongly because I think we have a moral responsibility to say, ‘Hang on guys, this is not… it’s not drama doc, we’re making a drama’.

“So they are two different entities.”

The fourth series of the show features Diana, Princess of Wales (Emma Corrin) and dramatises her relationship with the Prince of Wales (Josh O’Connor).

A statement from Netflix said: “We have always presented The Crown as a drama – and we have every confidence our members understand it’s a work of fiction that’s broadly based on historical events.

“As a result we have no plans – and see no need – to add a disclaimer.”

Peter Morgan, who created The Crown, had previously appeared on the show’s official podcast to defend his right to creative licence.

It is understood that very few formal complaints have been made to Netflix about the content of series four in the UK.

Former royal butler Paul Burrell said the new season is a “fair and accurate dramatisation” of the royal family’s treatment of Diana.

However Earl Spencer, Diana’s brother, has called for Netflix to add a disclaimer making it clear The Crown is a work of fiction.

He told ITV’s Lorraine: “I think it would help The Crown an enormous amount if, at the beginning of each episode, it stated that, ‘This isn’t true but it is based around some real events’.

“I worry people do think that this is gospel and that’s unfair.”

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