Paul Sparks as Billy Graham plays an important role in the second season of The Crown, appearing in several episodes to provide counsel to Elizabeth and her husband Philip (Matthew Goode) after they receive backlash from British citizens over their marriage and religious differences. Sparks’ performance adds an interesting layer to the history of Graham and his influence on the royal family, but there’s still a lot about his impact on the conscience of Elizabeth that we don’t know about yet. Here are three ways Graham impacted the young queen’s views on religion and her relationship with her subjects that we’ve seen so far… The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth

Real Billy Graham

The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth

Billy Graham is known as one of America’s most prominent evangelical preachers. Originally from Florida, he was raised in poverty to become an orator and was often asked to deliver speeches for President Nixon. He has also been noted as one of America’s first famous televangelists. What is less well-known about him, though, is his role in advising Queen Elizabeth II on spiritual matters during her reign over England.

About Paul Sparks

Paul Sparks, the British actor who played Billy Graham in The Crown, was an excellent choice for this role. The way he delivered his lines with such conviction imbued him with an air of importance which accentuated the respect, admiration, and reverence all had for him. Sparks’ appearance was spot-on too–if you didn’t know who Paul Sparks really is (I didn’t), it would be hard to tell that he wasn’t American. He spoke like someone from Georgia, complete with Southern drawl and twang. I don’t know how they managed that since they were filming in London!

The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth
The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth

 About his Role As Billy Graham

Billy Graham was an American preacher with connections to the royal family. He has notably influenced the young Queen of England, leading her to consult him on matters of conscience when she ascended the throne. Paul Sparks is portraying this important figure in season two of The Crown (TV series) who strongly impacted Elizabeth’s conscience. Paul has commented that his character is complicated. As such, he has not been able to provide any insight into what we can expect from their interactions. He’s so dynamic, which makes it really hard for me.

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When questioned about whether or not Billy Graham is supportive of the monarchy in The Crown (TV series), he responded, I’m sure that there are mixed feelings about it.


The Crown is one of the most popular TV shows currently airing, with the second season focusing on the later years of Queen Elizabeth’s rule. One interesting thing that viewers may not know about Queen Elizabeth, however, is that in addition to being an amazing queen, she was also a powerful religious figure in her own right. Though there were many great preachers during her reign as queen (including George Whitefield), perhaps none made as significant an impact on her early life than Billy Graham.

Graham’s influence on Princess Elizabeth

Billy Graham, who is portrayed by Paul Sparks in The Crown (TV series) had great influence over Princess Elizabeth. One such occasion where we see this is the trip to America during which she meets him. Their conversation results in her feeling calm and assured that she can achieve her goals no matter how difficult the road ahead may seem. He also tells her that she has been chosen for greatness, something with roots in ancient Egyptian lore.

The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth
The Crown and the Conscience: How Billy Graham Impacted a Young Elizabeth

Frequently Asked Questions

Is Paul Sparks in the crown?

Paul Sparks as Billy Graham, a prominent American preacher whom Elizabeth consults (season 2) The Crown (TV series) is an outstanding British TV drama series starring Claire Foy and Matt Smith. It tells the story of Queen Elizabeth II from the 1940s to today. In season 2, episode 5 we see our Queen playing with her children at Balmoral in 1952.

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Who does Paul Sparks play in the crown?

One of the more interesting aspects to the second season of Netflix’s hit series The Crown is how Paul Sparks’ portrayal of famed preacher Billy Graham influences Queen Elizabeth II. In Episode 4, Sparks’ Graham is consulted by a young Queen at Buckingham Palace to help get out from under Prime Minister Winston Churchill’s influence. It didn’t work in this case, but it still provides an example for how powerful one man with strong religious convictions could be for a world leader.

Who plays Reverend Graham in the crown?

Paul Sparks plays Reverend Billy Graham in the hit Netflix series. In season two, he is portrayed as an American preacher to whom then-Princess Elizabeth consults after she becomes Queen. At his suggestion, she makes her first televised Christmas broadcast from York Minster, thus marking the debut of Queen Elizabeth II on the world stage.

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Who did Paul Sparks play House of Cards?

Paul Sparks, who played United States Secretary of State and Vice President Underwood’s right-hand man Doug Stamper on House of Cards, is set to play the Reverend Billy Graham in season 2 of The Crown. He has been tapped by Vanessa Kirby (Elizabeth) to coach her in preparation for a scene where she consults with Graham about how he uses his pulpit to help people while being cognizant of his words’ impact.


Paul Sparks as Billy Graham, portrays the figure of a man who struggled with his faith yet, had the strength to represent Christian values through all his challenges. In our current political climate, many Christian figureheads are also wrestling with their faith in difficult circumstances. How we respond as Christians determines not only our own character but our leadership role in society as well.

The series concludes that Americans have been deeply shaped by Billy Graham’s influence, which has touched on various topics from religion to sexual abuse to racism.

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