Former Doctor Who star Matt Smith 'nearly died' during The Crown filming

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Actor Matt Smith has revealed he nearly died during filming for new lavish Netflix drama The Crown.

The Doctor Who actor, who plays the Duke of Edinburgh in the costume drama, said he was riding a horse when it cantered off with him during filming in South Africa.

Claire Foy and Matt Smith  (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)
Claire Foy and Matt Smith (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)

Matt told the Graham Norton show: "These horses were being a bit frisky.

"We were meant to get on them and trot off and have this lovely love scene, which didn't even make the cut.

"In my stupidity I got on the horse and cantered around and then it just went. I tried to grab a branch and everyone was shouting 'Oh my God, don't grab the branch!' So I went under the branch and then down a ravine.

Ben Affleck on Graham Norton (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)
Ben Affleck on Graham Norton (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)

"I was so scared. As it galloped towards a herd of zebra, a huge man grabbed it by the reins and saved my life."

The show begins before the royal wedding of Princess Elizabeth and Philip and follows life inside both Buckingham Palace and 10 Downing Street up until the eve of the Suez crisis

His co-star, Claire Foy - who plays the Queen, also appeared on the BBC One chat show.

Claire Foy ((Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images))
Claire Foy ((Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images))

Claire revealed she was having to juggle breastfeeding with being the Queen after she accepted the role when pregnant.

She said: "I was an idiot - such a huge idiot.

"Every morning I'd be hooked up to the pump and without fail someone would say 'Someone's phone is going'."

"I was a lunatic trying to breastfeed and be the Queen. It was an odd thing to do."

The pair appeared alongside Sir David Attenborough, who said he had his own near-death experience when travelling in a Land Rover through Africa with a big game expert.

Sir David Attenborough (Claire Foy (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)
Sir David Attenborough (Claire Foy (Matt Crossick/PA Wire/PA Images)

The veteran broadcaster said: "We were driving along happily when I heard this strange noise. He said 'That was a Rhino charging us, a dummy charge, that's what they do. It's no bother at all'.

"Suddenly there was this noise again only this time it ended with a boom as the Rhino hit the vehicle. The Land Rover was picked up from the back end and shaken and I saw the chap's hands gripping the steering wheel with white knuckles.

"Then it went 'boom' again and this time it was under the wheels and it almost destroyed the Land Rover and all we did was sit there.

"Eventually it retreated and I turned to the big game expert and said, 'That was a hell of a dummy charge'."

Singer Sting and actor Ben Affleck also appeared on The Graham Norton Show, which airs on BBC One on November 4 at 10.35pm.