Have they forgotten to tell beaming Queen Imelda it’s her ‘annus horribilis’? Crown star is all smiles as she recreates famous speech where Her Majesty describes nightmare events of 1992 for Netflix show
It was the ‘annus horribilis’ the Queen would surely rather forget.
But while Her Majesty struck a sad note when she famously used the Latin phrase to describe the tumultuous events of 1992, the re-creation of that speech for the next series of The Crown seems to be a more jolly affair.
Actress Imelda Staunton couldn’t suppress her smile as she filmed the pivotal scene as the monarch in South London last week.
Actress Imelda Staunton couldn’t suppress her smile as she filmed the pivotal scene as the monarch in South London last week
But otherwise, she very much looked the part in a turquoise coat and blue gloves that matched the outfit the Queen wore for her memorable speech at the Guildhall in the City of London.
The event marked her 40th anniversary on the throne, but came after 12 months in which Charles and Diana’s marriage woes had become public; the Duke and Duchess of York had split after a toe-sucking tabloid scandal; Princess Anne had divorced Captain Mark Phillips; and a fire ravaged her beloved Windsor Castle.
‘1992 is not a year on which I shall look back with undiluted pleasure,’ the Queen admitted. ‘In the words of one of my more sympathetic correspondents, it has turned out to be an annus horribilis.’
Imelda Staunton as HRH Queen Elizabeth II and Jonathan Pryce as HRH Prince Phillip filming scenes where they attend Royal Gala at the Guildhall in London
As she recreated the scene for the Netflix drama, 65-year-old Ms Staunton, who has taken over the regal role from Olivia Colman, was flanked by Jonathan Pryce, 74, who plays Prince Philip, and Andrew Walton, playing the Lord Mayor of London.
One bystander at the The Old Royal Naval College in Greenwich, which is standing in for the Guildhall, said: ‘It was stunning to see Imelda Staunton and Jonathan Pryce walking along the red carpet in brilliant sunshine.
‘They certainly looked the part but they put a lot of effort into making it seem real. They must have been filming for 12 hours, both outside the college and inside.
Staunton with Jonathan Pryce, as Prince Philip, and Andrew Walton as the Lord Mayor
Queen Elizabeth and Prince Philip at Guildhall lunch, London, in November 1992
Imelda was a total star, laughing and joking with all the extras when she had a few moments when she wasn’t needed.’
Despite being a hit with viewers, The Crown has been criticised for taking liberties with the truth for the sake of a good story.
Producers have also upset the Royal Family, with Prince William reportedly frustrated that the upcoming series will dramatise Princess Diana’s controversial 1995 Panorama interview with Martin Bashir.
And a planned storyline about the relationship between Philip and aristocrat Penny Knatchbull, who was 30 years his junior, is also said to have ‘infuriated’ Royals.
The Queen marked her 74th wedding anniversary yesterday, her first without Philip, who died in April at the age of 99.