Emerald Fennell thinks being a member of the royal family must be “deadening and terrifying”.

Emerald Fennell

Emerald Fennell

The 35-year-old actress – who portrays Camilla Parker Bowles, who is now known as the Duchess of Cornwall, in ‘The Crown’ – can understand why it must be difficult to just be viewed as a “symbol” and not be allowed to express a personal opinion.

And Emerald was particularly impressed by how Camilla withstood so much “vitriol” in the backlash from her relationship with Prince Charles.

She said: “It seems like the most existentially troubling thing in the world.

“To be a symbol and not a person, an emblem to a whole country and to not ever express publicly what they are really thinking must be deadening, terrifying. The fact that any of them have survived it is admirable.

“I think what The Crown shows is that everyone is human. Everyone just needs to live.

“Camilla’s life would probably be a lot easier [without Charles in it], yet she put on a brave face in spite of unimaginable vitriol. I’m so impressed by anyone, a woman in particular, who can survive that.”

The ‘Killing Eve’ showrunner felt real “sympathy” for Camilla and was desperate to portray her on the show.

She said: “As a person who, to a fault, cares what other people think of me, I felt sympathy for Camilla.

“I found her so interesting. She was head girl of her school, a debutante, gorgeous, and then she got cast in this role, torn between two very demanding men [Charles, and Camilla’s husband Andrew Parker Bowles].

“I knew what [‘The Crown’ creator] Peter Morgan wanted for Camilla was something very fair and I’ve known women like that growing up. Very stoic, stalwart, country women, so I felt an understanding for her.”

But Emerald is grateful that there wasn’t as much reference material available to her as a young Camilla than to her co-star Emma Corrin, who plays the late Princess Diana.

She told Stella magazine: “Emma is just one of those once-in-a-lifetime people, a chameleon. I’d have been terrible at playing Diana. I’m slapdash and not good at analysing, I’d be so bad at anything so specific.

“There was nothing on Camilla when she was a young woman. No photographs, nothing of her talking, so it was easier for me to do it.”