That is not Matt Smith's real beard in "The Crown," and no, he did not like wearing it
Nothing says, “My wife is the Queen of England, I’m living in her shadow, and my son outranks me in succession to the crown,” quite like sailing around the world on a boat and growing a beard. If you think Prince Philip is going through some things during The Crown Season 2, you would be correct. He’s going through so many things, he grows a beard because of it (that’s what sailors on these boats did). But did Matt Smith actually grow that beard for The Crown?
No, because Matt Smith was not going through some existential crisis. That’s all on Philip.
Netflix’s The Crown is back, and with it comes the long, lingering glances, and fancy dinner parties. But it’s not all fun and games and meeting heads of state. If you’re Philip, it also means you’re trying to figure out your place in everything and doing a really bad job at it. Nothing against Philip, but man, the dude cannot cope with the fact that his wife wields more power. No spoilers, but it almost tears the two of them apart multiple times.
Early on in Season 2, Philip embarks on a tour of the Commonwealth, and sets sail around the globe in a boat. And since it’s just him and a bunch of other men in a boat, they simply stop grooming themselves. It’s facial hair aplenty. And if you ask Smith about it, you’ll get the truth about the hair: “It’s fake, I hate putting that beard on.”
Talking at a Netflix press event, Smith explained that while he hated wearing the beard, it certainly made him feel like a new man.
While Smith certainly has his own feelings about the beard, and you might have your own, his Crown co-stars were quite amused by it. Quips Vanessa Kirby, who plays Princess Margaret on the show: “I kept seeing pictures in the makeup trailer of Matt with different stages of beard and I was like, ‘Oh my God.'”
That’s just one of the many “oh my god” things about The Crown. Season 2 is now streaming on Netflix.