Viewers ‘sensitive’ after the Queen’s death, says The Crown star Imelda Staunton

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There are many bad headlines here about the upcoming season of The Crown, but its star, Imelda Staunton, is, well, perplexed. “All the commotion around this time”, she says, “is directly a result of the death of the Queen.”

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Stanton will play the Queen next Wednesday in season five, which is expected to cover the death of Princess Diana and the Windsor Castle fire.

It has already been criticized for its portrayal of Queen Elizabeth and the then Prince of Wales, with detractors including Dame Judi Dench and former PM Sir John Major.


“I think people are still very sensitive to the royal family,” Staunton says. “And makes sense. There’s not much we can do about it.”

Stanton is the third actor to play the Queen in the Netflix series, after Olivia Colman and Claire Foy.

Save the Hedgehog, Please Fogle

Nature-loving broadcaster Ben Fogle has forged a surprise alliance with Sonic the Hedgehog. Together with the British Hedgehog Preservation Society, they are on a mission to save the humble hog at this dangerous time of year – they nest in bonfires. “If there was one animal that represented Britain, it would be the hedgehog,” Ben tells us. “If you’re going to make a bonfire, make sure you check it for hedgehogs!”

Rishi gets into a tussle with his old boss

Rishi Sunak departs 10 Downing Street for questions from the Prime Minister (Victoria Jones/PA)

, PA Wire

Rishi Sunak has received a stern warning from his former boss. Not Boris Johnson but the owner of Hutty’s Brasserie, Kutty Mia, the restaurant in Southampton where the PM worked as a teenager. “Times are tough at his old workplace,” says Mr. Mia. “Rising prices have also made it difficult to break into this space. This is the toughest time I have gone through in 42 years.”

I’m Too Old for Bond, Says Dominic West

Dominic West

, Dave Bennett / Getty Images for ATG

As speculation about the next James Bond role looms, Dominic West has ruled himself out. “I’m too tall for Bond,” says the 53-year-old. Can he go face to face against 007? “I would love to play a villain,” he tells The Oldie. Despite the brush-off, West is still an international figure of mystery. When asked for his travel advice, he said: “If the government advises against it, it’s probably a good idea.”

last night in town

Anthony Joshua launched JD Sports’ Christmas ad last night while train geek Francis Bourgeois celebrates his book (they say a train has a karaoke machine) at the Transportation Museum. Models Mary Charteris and Emma Weymouth feed Kurt Geiger and Grayson Perry at the British Museum. Jolie Richardson supported the refugee group Select Love.


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