Who plays Prince Charles in The Crown season 6?

Dominic West rose to fame as Jimmy McNulty in The Wire

Dominic West as Prince Charles in The Crown season 6
Dominic West plays Prince Charles in The Crown season 6. (Netflix)

The Crown season five gave its cast a complete changeover. Dominic West stepped in as the tortured man-who-would-be King, Prince Charles, during the 1990s and will continue playing him until the show concludes at the end of season six.

West took over from Josh O'Connor, who was widely praised for his portrayal of a prince torn between love and duty in seasons three and four.

There's a lot of ground to cover, including the destruction of his marriage to Princess Diana (played by Elizabeth Debicki) and his continuing love for Camilla Parker-Bowles.

But what has West brought to the table as he captures some of the now-King's most troubled years?

Here's everything you need to know about West, where you know him from, and what he's said about his new, regal role.

Dominic West attends The Crown season 5 World Premiere at Theatre Royal Drury Lane
The actor attended the prestigious Eton College. (Getty)

Born 15 October, 1969, West (born Dominic Gerard Francis Eagleton West) was the sixth of seven children. His mother Pauline was an actor, and his father Thomas was a factory owner. Both sides of the family came from Irish heritage.

West is one of the many established alumni of the prestigious Eton College. He later continued his studies at Trinity College in Dublin, earning a degree in English Literature.

From this, he decided to pursue a career in acting and graduated from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in 1995.

Initially working largely in television, West had a string of small roles in notable productions. For example, he played a paparazzi photographer in the 1997 Spice World: The Movie, a palace guard in 1999's Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace, the ill-fated Fred Casely in the opening scenes of the 2002 movie adaptation of Chicago, and Ebeneezer Scrooge's kind-hearted nephew Fred in a TV adaptation of A Christmas Carol.

Catherine Fitzgerald and Dominic West on the red carpet
West has been married to Catherine Fitzgerald since 2010. (Variety/Penske Media via Getty)

However, arguably his breakthrough role came in the shape of Jimmy McNulty in The Wire in 2002. Since then, he's become one of the UK's busiest stars both in the UK and Stateside.

In June 2010, he married university sweetheart, Catherine Fitzgerald, and together they have four children – Dora, 16, Senan, 14, Francis, 13, and Christabel, 9.

He also has another daughter, Martha, 24, from a previous relationship.

Dominic West and Wendell Pierce as Jimmy McNulty and Bunk Moreland in The Wire
Dominic West won widespread acclaim for his role in The Wire. (HBO)

The role of Officer Jimmy McNulty in The Wire undoubtedly remains one of West's most praised and known roles. Remaining in the gritty drama from 2002-2008, the star played an obsessed and self-destructive cop.

In 2011, he earned his first Bafta for his portrayal of serial killer Fred West in TV mini-series, Appropriate Adult.

West took the lead role of Noah Solloway in The Affair in 2014, joining Ruth Wilson as Alison Bailey in the drama as a couple who both deal with the long-term effects of their decision to have extra-marital affairs after a chance encounter in Montauk, New York.

The series ran for five seasons, ending in 2019, with West being the sole character to remain throughout the show's entire run.

Dominic West and Ruth Wilson in The Affair season 1
West starred opposite Ruth Wilson in The Affair. (Sky/Showtime)

In 2019, he took on the lead role of Jean Valjean in a TV adaptation of Les Miserables, as written by Victor Hugo (so not the musical version that has been a West End success).

Film credits include 2014's Pride (which his The Crown co-star Imelda Staunton also appeared in), 2018's Colette with Keira Knightley, and 2018's Tomb Raider as Richard Croft.

Most recently, he was seen opposite Lily James in The Pursuit Of Love, and Dr Chris Cox in Sky series Brassic.

At the same time The Crown airs, he'll also be seen on BBC's new war drama, SAS Rogue Heroes as Lieutenant Colonel Wrangel Clarke.

Olivia Williams and Dominic West in The Crown
West originally turned down his role in The Crown. (Netflix)

West has actually confirmed he initially turned down the role of Prince Charles in The Crown when offered it, telling producers "you've got the wrong guy".

"I'd been watching the show, I'd been a fan from the start," West told Entertainment Weekly. "I was very conscious of Josh [O'Connor]'s amazing performance, and his amazing success, and thought it was a bit of a hiding to nothing to try to follow that."

However, he changed his mind when he "couldn't get the idea out of his head".

"[I] realised that you've got to give it a go because you'll regret it if you don't," he said. "He's a fascinating man, Charles, and it's a fascinating life, and a fascinating role."

He's also defended the series amid arguments for a disclaimer coming at the beginning of each episode, explaining The Crown is a dramatic retelling rather than real-life recreation.

"I think people understand, because the cast has changed every two seasons, that this is not an imitation," he told Netflix's TUDUM. "This is an evoking of a character. That's really where the show lives: in the imagined conversations of their private life, which is something that no one knows.

"I think that's what it gets a lot of criticism for. How can you know what they talk about in their private lives? "The obvious answer is we don't, but we have an incredible writer, a dramatist, who imagines based on exhaustive research, and that's really part of the fascination of the show."

Part one of The Crown season 6 launches on Netflix on Thursday, 16 November with part two arriving on Thursday 14 December.