Each season of “The Crown” spans roughly a decade’s worth of history and almost every hour-long episode acts like a self-contained story. It’s like a series of mini-movies about different points in time, all connected by the common thread of Queen Elizabeth’s historic reign. While one episode might zero in on a specific historic event, another picks a theme and traces it over the course of months or even years. For Morgan and his team, the hardest part of putting a season together is figuring out exactly which moments in time to focus on — and which will end up on the cutting room floor.
But as difficult as the process may be, Morgan considers this to be the secret ingredient to the show’s success. In a 2021 interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Morgan said:
“This is the part of the writing process that takes me the longest — working out what to leave out and what to put in. I like to think that’s the magic ingredient and what defines ‘The Crown.’ It takes us at least nine months, outlining and outlining, before the writing of any season starts.”
While major themes and the characters themselves tie the story together, each season of “The Crown” feels like its own distinct era. Within those, each episode feels like its own anecdote, zeroing in on something specific to make a grander statement about the royals. Morgan added:
“History, even recent history, is so reductive, and so many gems disappear into a black hole. No one would thank us for churning out the “greatest hits” of any decade. We have to dig deep and find the surprises, the overlooked stories, like palace break-ins, and put them alongside the iconic events — like moon landings or weddings, or elections, or assassinations.”