Prince Harry once said he would not like to be portrayed in Netflix’s The Crown.
And his wish looks to be the producers’ command as one writer revealed he won’t be putting Meghan Markle and Harry’s stories in future series, because there is not “enough distance” from the subjects.
Peter Morgan said he wanted to maintain a 20-year rule when it came to subject matter for The Crown, helping the show to retain perspective and metaphor.
The fifth and sixth instalments of the show will bring the story into the 21st century, but without the Duke and Duchess of Sussex, or the Duke of York.
Morgan told The Hollywood Reporter: “I just think you get so much more interesting (with time).
“Meghan and Harry are in the middle of their journey, and I don’t know what their journey is or how it will end.
“One wishes some happiness, but I’m much more comfortable writing about things that happened at least 20 years ago.
“I sort of have in my head a 20-year rule. That is enough time and enough distance to really understand something, to understand its role, to understand its position, to understand its relevance.
“Often things that appear absolutely wildly important today are instantly forgotten, and other things have a habit of sticking around and proving to be historically very relevant and long-lasting.”
He added that it’s not known now “where in the scheme of things Prince Andrew or indeed Meghan Markle or Harry will ever appear”.
Morgan added: “And so I don’t want to write about them because to write about them would instantly make it journalistic. And there are plenty of journalists already writing about them.
“To be a dramatist, I think you need perspective and you need to also allow for the opportunity for metaphor.
“Once something has a metaphorical possibility, it can then become interesting.
“It’s quite possible, for example, to tell the story of Harry and Meghan through analogy and metaphor, if that’s what you want to do. Because there’ve been so many examples in the past, whether it’s Wallis Simpson or Edward VII, or whether it’s Diana and Prince Charles.
“There have been plenty of opportunities in the past where there have been marital complications.
“There’ve been wives that have been married into the royal family that have felt unwelcome and that they don’t fit in. So there are plenty of stories to tell without telling the story of Harry and Meghan.”
A young Prince Andrew features in season four, but does not have any major story lines.
The Crown recently announced that Imelda Staunton will be the next person to play the Queen, taking over from Olivia Colman.
Lesley Manville will take over from Helena Bonham Carter as Princess Margaret and Jonathan Pryce was announced as the next Prince Philip, replacing Tobias Menzies.
Elizabeth Debicki will play Princess Diana, replacing Emma Corrin, who will make her debut in season four.
Morgan also spoke to the magazine about reports he meets royals’ aides to brief them about what is coming up in future series of the show.
He said: “I meet on an entirely informal and impersonal basis with a couple of people who used to work at the palace and who I imagine still have contacts with the palace.
“It ends up as one of those rather ridiculous conversations in which everybody is slightly tiptoeing and saying something other than what they mean, but you’re still finding a way of getting some information out while at the same time everybody has the most important thing, which is deniability.”
He added: “Occasionally they might come back and say ‘I enjoyed certain aspects of the season,’ and by that I know that he or she probably means other people enjoyed that. And then they’ll say ‘There were one or two things that I personally found disappointing’, which probably means that somebody else found them disappointing.”
Prince Harry once told his biographer Angela Levin that he was going to “stop” The Crown before they got to him.
However Katie Nicholl, Vanity Fair royal correspondent, has reported that the prince and his then girlfriend Meghan enjoyed watching the show when they were dating.
She said: “They just had a very normal courtship. But when she came over and stayed with Prince Harry at Notting Cottage, I was told that they loved nothing more than cooking some nice food, catching up on Netflix and watching The Crown, which they apparently watch together.”
According to Colman, who played the Queen in series three and four, Prince William gave her a firm no when she asked if he had watched the show.