The Crown’s Gillian Anderson blasts rumours she forced rewrite

Golden Globes: Gillian Anderson wins Best Supporting Actress

The Crown star Gillian Anderson has blasted rumours she refused to return for the show’s sixth and final season. Reports claimed Anderson – who was widely praised for her depiction of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher – had forced show writers to rewrite scripts after declining the opportunity to return.

Completely shutting down the rumour, Anderson retweeted the reports and simply declared it to be “absolute b*****ks”.

Anderson appeared in the fourth season of The Crown – which tracked the Royal Family’s life in the ’80s through to the early ’90s.

Thatcher – often referred to as the “Iron Lady” – has proven to be one of the most divisive faces in political history and is said to have not been in the favour of Queen Elizabeth II, who disagreed with her policies.

Anderson’s performance alongside Olivia Colman’s Queen Elizabeth won worldwide attention.

In 2021, she was awarded an Emmy for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama for her portrayal – her first in 24 years after her breakthrough role as Dana Scully in The X Files.

Across the Easter bank holiday weekend, it was reported Anderson had declined the opportunity to return to The Crown for a flashback due to scheduling conflicts.

However, Anderson has seemingly taken exception to the allegation she “refused” rather than simply couldn’t do it.

She will next be back on our screens for the fourth season of Netflix’s Sex Education as Dr Jean Milburn, the sex therapist mum of leading teen Oris (Asa Butterfield).

She has also been announced to be playing Emily Maitlis in the upcoming series Scoop – a dramatic retelling of the now infamous Newsnight interview with Prince Andrew.

Scoop will focus on how the BBC obtained the 2019 bombshell interview with the Prince about his friendship with convicted sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

Anderson is joined by Rufus Sewell as Prince Andrew, Keeley Hawes as Amanda Thirsk, and Billie Piper as Sam McAlister.

The show is yet to be given a release date.

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The Crown is currently in production for its upcoming final season, which is believed to cover more than a decade of events in royal life.

Season five, which aired in 2022, saw a complete overhaul of the cast thanks to a time jump, with Imelda Staunton taking over the role of Queen Elizabeth II.

Elizabeth Debicki joined the cast as Princess Diana, taking over from Emma Corrin, and Dominic West replaced Josh O’Connor as Prince Charles.

The upcoming episodes are set to include the devastating 1997 car crash that killed Diana and Dodi Fayed.

It’s not known how Anderson was going to factor into the upcoming episodes, considering Thatcher’s time in power was confined to the events that unfolded in season four.

Little has been confirmed about the show’s plans and just how far it will expand into the Queen’s life, however, it was noted in 2021 the show wouldn’t “deal with recent events”.

This would include Prince Andrew’s scandal, Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s marriage or the Queen’s death in 2022.

It’s expected season six will air at some point at the end of this year, depending on post-production time.

The Crown is available on Netflix.

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