The Crown Prince Andrew

The Crown on Netflix to erase Prince Andrew’s relationship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein

James Murray will reprise his role in the sixth and final season

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The makers of The Crown have decided to swerve the thorny issue of Prince Andrew and his relationship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein.

The Netflix show has included Princess Diana’s shock departure from the royal family, Lord Mountbatten’s death, the tragic history of Princess Alice, and the dark past of Elizabeth’s uncle.

Scriptwriters have also tackled the real life tragedy in Aberfan, and Charles and Camilla’s (cough, cough) intimate phone call… In fact, there’s very little the serial drama is afraid to dramatise.

Until now.

James Murray as Prince Andrew in Netflix's The Crown
James Murray as Prince Andrew in The Crown (Netflix)

Will Jeffrey Epstein appear in The Crown?

The Crown scriptwriters have made the decision to erase Prince Andrew’s controversial friendship with sex offender Jeffrey Epstein, it has been revealed.

Actor James Murray will reprise his role as Prince Andrew in the upcoming sixth and final season of the Netflix show. But the writers have decided to omit a rather sticky storyline.

The Crown series 6 will focus on the lives of the royal family throughout the late 1990s and early 2000s. However it will NOT include any reference to Prince Andrew’s relationship with Jeffrey Epstein. Or his alleged encounter with Victoria Giuffre.

The Metro reports that “The Crown season 6 will be tackling Prince Andrew’s friendship with Jeffrey Epstein by completely ignoring it”.

The article continues: “While plot details are being kept under wraps, it is expected the long-running drama will depict Princess Diana’s death. It will also feature King Charles and Queen Camilla’s wedding, as well as paying tribute to the late Queen.”

Netflix has not divulged why Jeffrey Epstein hasn’t been written into The Crown. We can only assume it’s for legal reasons, and out of respect to his victims.

Talking about his role as Prince Andrew, actor James Murray has previously said: “It’s difficult, because a lot of opinions about Andrew in recent years have rightfully been negative, so people will turn any ambiguous story into a negative one if they’ve decided somebody is a wrong ‘un.

“So many people have come up to me since I got the role and told me stories – either they met him, or someone they know met him, or their parents met him. But, while the stories themselves were innocuous, there was usually a spin put on them. His behaviour, and the choices he made, have made him into almost a pantomime villain.”

What was Prince Andrew’s connection to Jeffrey Epstein?

Firstly, Prince Andrew was good friends with Ghislaine Maxwell, Jeffrey Epstein’s partner. In a November 2019 interview with the BBC, Andrew said that the two had known each other since Ghislaine was an undergraduate at Oxford.

Later, Ghislaine introduced Jeffrey Epstein to Prince Andrew, and the three often socialised together. She famously escorted Andrew to a “hookers and pimps” social function in New York.

In 2000, Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein attended a party thrown by Prince Andrew at the Queen’s Sandringham House estate in Norfolk, England.

Andrew was even pictured with Jeffrey Epstein in New York City’s Central Park after the businessman had been convicted for the prostitution of minors in 2010.

Victoria Giuffre sued the duke for allegedly sexually assaulting her when she was 17. She claims convicted sex offender Jeffery Epstein trafficked her.

A photo used as evidence seemed to show Prince Andrew with his arm around Virginia, with Ghislaine smiling in the background. Ghislaine and Andrew have both stated the photo is a fake.

Prince Andrew denies all claims and says he has never met Ms Giuffre. Ms Giuffre told BBC Panorama the photo was “authentic” and said she gave the original to the FBI in 2011. The case was settled in Giuffre’s favour for an undisclosed sum in 2017.

Victoria Giuffre subsequently sued the Prince in civil court in New York. The suit was settled in February 2022 with Prince Andrew paying an undisclosed amount to Giuffre and making a substantial donation to her charity.

The Royal Family as depicted in The Crown
The Royal Family, including Prince Andrew far right, as depicted in The Crown (Credit: Netflix)

What has Prince Andrew said about Jeffrey Epstein?

Disgraced royal Prince Andrew addressed his ongoing friendship with Jeffrey Epstein after his release from prison in his infamous Newsnight interview with Emily Maitlis.

He said he had “let the side down” for the royal family. He said: “I stayed with him, and that’s the bit that I kick myself for on a daily basis. Because it was not something that was becoming of a member of the royal family. We try and uphold the highest standards and practices and I let the side down, simple as that.”

Andrew stepped down from public life over his friendship with Jeffrey Epstein in 2019. Jeffrey took his own life in jail. His accomplice Ghislaine Maxwell is currently serving 20 years in prison.

Ahead of his legal settlement, the Queen stripped Prince Andrew of all of his honorary military roles.

Prince Andrew drama Scoop on Netflix

Despite refusing to acknowledge Prince Andrew’s relationship with Jeffrey Epstein in The Crown, Netflix IS producing a drama about the cancelled royal.

A drama based on Andrew’s cringe-worthy Newsnight interview is expected to land later this year. Entitled Scoop, it will see Rufus Sewell portray Andrew.

Keeley Hawes and Gillian Anderson will also star in the drama.

Read more: Ghislaine Maxwell, Jeffrey Epstein’s accomplice and ‘good friend’ to Prince Andrew, was a ‘monster’ sex trafficker

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The Crown season 6 will stream on Netflix in 2024. Seasons 1 to 5 are available now.

Do you think The Crown should include Prince Andrew’s relationship with Jeffrey Epstein? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.

Helen Fear
TV Editor