The Crown producers have a plan in place for if the Queen dies during filming 9 months ago

The Crown producers have a plan in place for if the Queen dies during filming

'London Bridge is down.'

If you are in any way a royal fan, you might be familiar with the secret code that will be used in the UK on the day Queen Elizabeth II dies.


The phrase "London Bridge is down” will be used by Buckingham Palace – most likely the Queen's private secretary – to communicate the sad news of the monarch's passing. Using secure lines, the palace will officially start the chain of delivering the news to all relevant governments and parties – from parliament to the London Metropolitan Police to the British press – and the news must be delivered in code.

The coded message was first coined back in the 1960s, and it is not just the Queen herself who has been designated a secret code name to be used in the event of her death.

All senior members of the House of Windsor have their own codes, and back in April 2021, the code message 'Operation Forth Bridge' announced to all relevant agencies that Prince Philip had passed away at the age of 99. And when the Queen Mother passed away in 2002, "Operation Tay Bridge" was used to announce her passing.

To be fair, given that the queen is now the grand old age of 96, it really is no wonder that these plans are in place. What might just be a tad more surprising, is that the producers of The Crown have their own version of Operation London Bridge ready.



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Post-production and filming on seasons 5 and 6 of The Crown are underway, with season 5 launching on Netflix this November.

However, should the Queen happens to pass away before production is complete, producer on The Crown, Peter Morgan and his fellow crew have a plan for how to proceed. According to the New York Post, a "series insider" revealed that filming would be shut down immediately upon news of Queen Elizabeth's death, and "there would also be lots of discussion about when to restart.”


As for the upcoming season of the historical drama featuring the royal family, we will see Imelda Staunton take over the central role of Queen Elizabeth from Olivia Colman. Season 5 will cover events throughout the 1990s, and will likely focus heavily on 1992, which Queen Elizabeth famously dubbed her "annus horribilis" (horrible year). Three royal marriages broke down during that year: Prince Charles and Diana, Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson, and Princess Anne and Captain Mark Phillips.

Not much is yet known of Season 6, which will be The Crown's last season, but rumours have it that Princess Diana's death will be a focal point. Dominic West, who will take over the role of Prince Charles, told Deadline that season six will be "as tumultuous as it gets," in depicting the fallout from her fatal car crash in 1997.

We also know that a young Prince William, Prince Harry and even Kate Middleton will all feature in the final season—and that the series may wrap up on the 2005 wedding of Prince Charles and Camilla Parker-Bowles.