- Philip considered suing Netflix over an episode in “The Crown” season two, per The Sunday Times.
- He was reportedly angry about the show implying he was blamed for his older sister’s death.
- A royal expert told Insider that Philip didn’t proceed to avoid drawing attention to the episode.
Prince Philip seriously considered suing Netflix for airing an episode in “The Crown” that implied he was blamed for his older sister’s death, The Sunday Times reported.
Hugo Vickers, a royal commentator and author, told the newspaper that Philip contacted his advisors at London firm Farrer & Co about his desires to seek legal retribution from Netflix for an episode in season two of the hit show.
The episode is titled “Paterfamilias” and portrays the death of Philip’s older sister Princess Cecilie, who was killed alongside her newborn baby in a plane crash in 1937.
Representatives for Farrer & Co and Buckingham Palace did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
The dramatized retelling of the tragedy portrays a young Philip at his sister’s funeral getting told by his father, Prince Andrew of Greece and Denmark, that he was the reason for Cecilie’s death. Philip, who died in April 2021 aged 99, was only 16 at the time.
After the series aired in 2017, Vickers told The Sunday Times that Philip consulted his lawyers about the episode. “He was very upset about the way that was portrayed. He was human. He could be hurt like anybody else,” he said.
In “The Crown,” it is implied that Cecilie, who was 26 when she died, decided to fly to the UK to visit Philip in boarding school after he got in trouble and was subsequently punished by not being allowed to go to Germany for the holidays.
As Vickers previously told Insider’s Mikhaila Friel, the implication of Philip’s involvement in his sister’s death was the “worst assertion” the show has made by far. “Prince Philip, I do know was very upset about that episode and the way his family was treated,” Vickers said.
Nonetheless, Philip did not end up suing Netflix, which royal commentator and film critic Richard Fitzwilliams told Insider was not entirely surprising.
“The problem with the royal family, the moment they sue, if they decide to sue or if they decide to go to court, it means that there’s the most enormous amount of attention,” Fitzwilliams said.
“The reason he didn’t do it was because the whole world would’ve heard of this and perhaps some would’ve believed that it might have been true,” he added.