St Andrews students share insight of The Crown’s behind-the-scenes
Students at St Andrews, where the Prince and Princess of Wales first met, have been watching as the cast and crew of The Crown have transformed the Scottish town into a Hollywood film set.
The hit show’s sixth and last series is currently being filmed and this week stars Ed McVey and Meg Bellamy have been recreating Kate and Willaim’s student years in the coastal town.
Many students in the town have enjoyed behind-the-scenes glimpses of the action, and have been busy sharing their insights on TikTok.
Filming from their classrooms, halls and bedrooms, St Andrews’ locals revealed how they spotted Dominic West, who plays a middle-aged King Charles in the series, McVey and Bellamy in the streets of their town.
Students at St Andrews University have enjoyed a front seat on filming of the new series of The Crown, with cast and crew descending on the Scottish town to recreate Prince William and Kate Middleton’s student years
While some reportedly begged Netflix to let them be extras on the show – with some claiming the job pays £250 a day – others moaned that filming could get in the way of their studies, and one even revealed she was paid £50 by the crew to let them film from her student room.
The film crew have been spotted all over the town in recent days, from the harbour to the University’s premises and the town’s independent cinema.
Many students have shared their own videos of the set on social media, with one captioning her post: ‘Watch the Crown be filmed on my university campus.’
Another shared a video of Dominic West and Ed McVey filming Prince William’s first day at the university with the caption: ‘You wake up to The Crown season six outside your flat.’
One person even managed to get close to set while Ed McVey entered the university’s library, with many remarking how much the young actor, 22, looks like a teenage William.
And another student revealed she was offered £50 from the crew to let them set up a camera in her bedroom to capture one of the scenes on the university grounds.
‘If the lighting is looking extra good in season 6 of The Crown just know it was coming from my bedroom,’ the student revealed.
Meanwhile, eager students recreated scenes from the third series of the show, asking Netflix to hire them, while others claim that being an extra on the show could help them earn £250 for a day’s work.
Ed McVey, who plays Prince William as a university student, was spotted filming by the university’s library
A student revealed she was paid £50 to let the crew film some scenes from the window of her student room
Some fans got to have their pictures with Ed, who plays young Prince William in the show, and has been spotted all over St Andrews
But while many enjoyed the Crown-mania taking over their university halls and town, not everyone welcomed their facilities being booked for filming.
‘Imagine just trying to study or finish an essay and The Crown blocks off the library. I would cry,’ one said.
‘Filming and construction in the library when exams are in a month! Lucky us,’ another said.
‘Trying to get to class in sallies and fighting off camera crew is insane,’ another student noted.
It was during his time at St Andrews that Prince William met and fell in love with fellow student Kate Middleton, now the Princess of Wales.
They became friends in their first year before romance blossomed after William saw ‘hot’ Kate strut down a charity fashion show catwalk in a sheer dress. They graduated in 2005 and William proposed five years later.
Some fans got a very close look at Dominic West portraying King Charles in the early 2000s yesterday
Fans are eagerly awaiting the release of The Crown’s final series later this year, with the show already courting controversy over its depiction of the tragic death of Princess Diana.
Earlier this week, The Crown’s Meg Bellamy, who is playing Kate in the series, and Ed were seen portraying the royal couple as the series recreated their time at St Andrews.
The actress, 19, was pictured arriving at the modest St Andrews terraced house where the royal couple lived together during university. Ed was seen in a green jumper for the scenes.
When William and Kate returned for their second year at St Andrews, the pair and two pals opted to live off campus in a quaint two-storey home in the city.
Some got glimpses of the behind-the-scenes from the university halls, with some saying they had to sneak through cameras and filming crews on their way to class
They moved into 13A Hope Street, which cost just £100 per week each, with housemates Etonian Fergus Boyd and Olivia Bleasdale.
The modest home included a small kitchen, where William is said to have tried to impress Kate with his culinary skills.
He had relocated to the prestigious university in Fife after completing his studies at Eton College in 2001. They graduated in 2005 and William proposed five years later.
In 2007, the couple did briefly split but reunited shortly after and married in 2011.
Speaking about their mutually agreed break-up in their engagement interview the couple admitted it was for the best.
While some begged Netflix to let them be extras on the show – with some claiming the job paid £250 a day – others moaned that filming could get in the ways of their studies, and one even revealed she was paid £50 by the crew to let them filmed from her student room
William said: ‘We were both very young, it was at university and we were both finding ourselves and being different characters and stuff. It was very much trying to find our own way and we were growing up.’
While Meg has no official acting credits to her name, Ed has significantly more experience; he graduated from Drama Centre London in 2021 and was an understudy in the play Camp Siegfried, which was shown at London’s Old Vic.
Meg has never acted before and applied for the role after earning an A* for drama in her A-levels at St Crispin’s School in Wokingham, Berkshire.
She had previously only taken part in school productions and had a part-time job at Legoland in nearby Windsor.
For the sixth series, Imelda Staunton will reprise her role as Queen Elizabeth II, with Jonathan Pryce playing her husband Prince Philip.
Elizabeth Debicki will once again appear as Princess Diana in the build-up to her death, while Dominic West plays Prince Charles.
Many argued that filming scenes leading up to Princess Diana’s death in Paris were insensitive – as well as the series going ahead with its launch not long after the Queen’s death in September last year.
Focusing heavily on the fallout between Princess Diana, played by Debicki and King Charles (then Prince of Wales) as portrayed by West, the new series showcased a number of low points for the royals.
Among them were Charles and Diana’s marriage breakdown, the late royal’s controversial Panorama interview and the notorious ‘tampongate’ phone call between the King and Queen Consort, then Camilla.
Acting royalty Dame Judi Dench, who is close to King Charles and Camilla, has accused the programme of being ‘crude and hurtful’.