Matt Smith thinks Prince Philip is the "rock star of the Royal Family".

Matt Smith

Matt Smith

The 35-year-old actor plays the 96-year-old monarch during his earlier years in Netflix drama 'The Crown' and while he is often told the Duke of Edinburgh was an irritating person, he believes the royal is a "very cool cat".

He said: "I keep hearing what an a**e he was, but I actually think he is the rock star of the Royal Family.

"He's a very cool cat. And in this run [of 'The Crown'], I think we learn far more about him and the effects of great tragedy in his life and how that's insidiously affected him."

Matt doesn't think living life as a royal in Philip's earlier years would've been "easy", and admits he would've "struggled" with certain aspects of his role if he had been in the same position.

He said: "In the 50s, he had to give up his job, he had to kneel before his wife, his children had to take her name - that had to give rise to inner turmoil and conflict.

"How could it not? It wouldn't have been easy, any of it, as a proud man. I know myself, as a man - I know I would struggle with certain things he experienced."

Matt insists Philip and Queen Elizabeth - who have been married for 70 years - wouldn't be real people unless they had some sort of "tension" in their lives during their marriage after what they have been through.

He added to heat magazine: "What couple doesn't [have problems]?

"And take away the royalness of it all - imagine being told by your partner, your significant other, 'You're going on a solo tour for five months.' No questions.

"Now if that doesn't create some fraught tension then these aren't people we're dealing with.

"But they survived and thrived throughout a 70-year marriage. Seventy years together, it's mid-bogglingly bonkers. Wow."