The Sun – The star of the hit Netflix drama says she wouldn’t be willing to support the monarchy if people opposed its existence – and, as well as comparing Queen Elizabeth to Madonna, said she is delighted she doesn’t have to play her any more.
Claire Foy has made some surprising comments about her view on the Queen, whom she plays in The Crown
Mum of one Claire, a Stockport native who identifies as a “commoner”, has played the now-91-year-old monarch for two series, and is now handing over to an older actress.
And explaining why she was more than happy to stop playing the Queen, Claire told The Daily Mail’s Weekend mag: “I need change.
“I need to play somebody who’s able to communicate on a more open level. And that’s not Elizabeth.”
She added: “I’ve been released! I’m no longer her, so I feel like I’ve escaped!”
The Crown has wowed critics, though some fans think it is not critical enough of the monarchy
Asked her general feelings on the British monarchy, Claire was not brimming with praise, and said she wouldn’t “personally” feel inclined to support them.
She said: “I don’t know if the Royal Family will always carry on, and if they don’t, I don’t know that I’d be out there waving a placard saying ‘Save the Monarchy’!”
She went on: “I don’t know whether I’d personally be doing that at all…
“I think the monarchy only works if it’s a source of good, and the British monarchy has done very well at realising that they’re there to serve the public.”
But after playing her for two series – which she never expected to do when the project first came her way – Claire is well aware that Queen Elizabeth is a nuanced character.
Comparing her to a slightly less regal woman, Claire said of the Head of State: “She’s sort of timeless and bias-less, which is how she needs to be… A bit like Madonna, really!”
Claire – who stars in the upcoming Stieg Larsson sequel The Girl In The Spider’s Web – added that she admires the Queen for “making time for herself” by occasionally escaping from her royal duties.
Giving her thoughts on the constraints of the Queen’s life, she explained: “There were moments…. when I really understood that she was trapped where she was, that she couldn’t get out.”
However, Claire’s ability to empathise with the monarch is limited, as she admitted: “Some of the decisions she makes, I struggle with….
“But I think that through making this amazing show I will always have a small understanding of her, but also a huge amount of respect for her because of what she’s had to go through, and how difficult times have been for her.”
Quite unlike her on-screen alter-ego, who she plays for the last time in series two of The Crown this December, Claire says she has worked all kinds of jobs “except medical stuff”, including being a checkout assistant in Tesco.
She said: “[It was a] dream job because I’d always wanted to work on a till – seriously, when I was younger I used to sit and look at tills in the Argos catalogue, I was so obsessed with them.
“So when I started working at Tesco, I was thinking: ‘Okay! Here we go! Ping ping!’. I loved it.”
But now a career in movies and TV means relaxed days with her husband Stephen Campbell Moore and their daughter, who’s two-and-a-half, are “few and far between”.
Series two of The Crown is being released on December 8 on Netflix when it will be available to binge watch.
People – We already knew that the corgis starring in The Crown were talented – they have their own trailer for the new season, after all! But they really seem to have the acting thing down to a fine art.
And their skills are on full display in a certain scene coming up in season 2 of the Netflix drama, which PEOPLE observed during a set visit earlier this year. As Queen Elizabeth, played by Claire Foy, and Jodi Balfour’s Jackie Kennedy wrap up a scene where they have an intimate, get-to-know-you chat, Foy’s character says, “Right, we’re going now.” And in take after take, the dog, resting in her lap, faithfully looked up at her right on cue.
Foy may have the magic touch in capturing the look and character of the Queen’s younger years, but she modestly brushes off praise for the way the corgi behaved in her lap.
“Dogs are quite perceptive and if you talk to them they tend to look in your direction. Often they don’t. That was probably just lucky,” she says. “I definitely don’t have some sort of Dr. Doolittle secret!”
Along with the corgis, the upcoming season features a few new arrivals with the births of Princes Andrew and Edward. Season two will also touch on the Queen’s difficulties to adjusting to a new era on the eve of the ’60s.
“I think [Queen Elizabeth] starts to realize she needs to pay more attention to her personal life now that the other part of her life is going all right,” says Foy.
“The world’s changing faster than anyone can catch up with. There is no letup. She just keeps having to go from one crisis to another to another, and at some point, it’s about five crises at the same time and you have no idea how she manages to get up in the morning,” Foy adds.
Mirror – Actress Claire Foy is hoping to be victorious, happy and glorious at the Emmy Awards tomorrow after wowing 200 million viewers worldwide.
British star Claire – a young Queen Elizabeth in The Crown – is hotly tipped to be voted Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.
Yet despite her role alongside Matt Smith in the Netflix hit – plus huge parts in Little Dorrit and as Anne Boleyn in Wolf Hall – Claire can still walk down the street unrecognised.
And while enjoying the lack of intrusion, she admits she’s a little bit miffed!
Mum-of-one Claire, speaking ahead of the ceremony in Los Angeles, even said she would have to beg to get attention!
She said: “I am not joking. I’ve actually been out in my Queen’s wig and full costume for dinner in London while we’ve been shooting, and even then people [didn’t care].
“Me and Matt walked into a restaurant together and a woman went, ‘Oh, you look nice!’ I was like, ‘Are you joking!’
“It never happens. I was on the Tube – I mean, I can’t even tell you! Like, throw me a bone! Christ!”
Claire was on fine form as she told how producers bent over backwards to accommodate her once they decided she should play Elizabeth.
She was heavily pregnant and insisted that being allowed to breastfeed on set was “non negotiable”.
Claire, wed to actor Stephen Campbell Moore, 37, had a daughter in February 2015 – just before filming started.
She said: “I was obviously really pregnant, so I was like, ‘My baby would be three months old when I start this job’.
“And then I did a screen test dressed as the pregnant Queen, and they were like, ‘Yeah, we want you to do it.’
“And I was like, ‘I need to be able to breastfeed on location. I probably need a trailer for the baby.’ ‘Okay, sure.’
“I was like, ‘Oh my God.’ I didn’t go massively power hungry. That’s where my demands stopped.
“I’m so grateful they decided I was the right person. I feel very, very lucky.
“And I know that is very unlikely in every other job that I do that I’ll have that free rein . . . which is a bit of a pun.”
Of life on set, she added: “There was a lot of walking around with child in pram, very tired listening to the Queen make Christmas speeches on my iPhone and reading and just cramming really.”
Claire said she only took the role after convincing herself she could juggle work with being a mum.
She said: “I didn’t know what physical state I would be in. You could be annihilated. But I also thought ‘what if I don’t respond well to it mentally?’
“It’s like ‘what if, what if, what if’?”
The actress also revealed she and co-star Matt , who plays Prince Philip, initially feared The Crown could be an expensive flop. Talking about the lavish £85million budget, she explained: “It was quite terrifying. It was the unknown. I looked at the actors, the directors and the writer and all the creative team and crew and I went, ‘this is something very, very special regardless of whether anyone likes it or not’.
“Because you’re so used to being in things nobody watches, or nobody cares about, or everyone thinks is rubbish and everyone’s got an opinion and blah, blah, blah’. And so it felt like, in a weird way, it felt like it was just for me.”
Claire’s fears were unfounded as the show became a massive success. Netflix , along with Left Bank Pictures, spared no expense in making the first series over a year.
It has since won a Golden Globe and been nominated for four BAFTAs – while Claire was voted outstanding actress at the Screen Actors Guild Awards in LA.
And the most uncomfortable on-set experience for Claire turned out not to be baby related at all.
She broke an elbow in a tumble at a friend’s wedding – then had to film scenes where the Queen mourns her father King George VI.
Looking back on her early days, Stockport-born Claire recalls suffering stage fright as a young actress. She overcame it and shot to fame with the BBC’s Dickensian drama Little Dorrit in 2008.
Claire said: “It was a real learning curve for me. I am quite expressive, loud and big and she was very contained and tiny and meek.”
She has finished work on the second series of The Crown, which airs at Christmas and will be her last.
And she added: “It’s wonderful to be part of something people have enjoyed. It’s very weird to suddenly be in a position where people think that you’re worth their attention. Even if at all ends from there, it is all really lovely.”
The Hollywood Reporter – One of this year’s biggest breakout stars — she won Golden Globe and SAG awards for her portrayal of young Queen Elizabeth II in the most expensive TV series ever made (Netflix allocated $100 million for its first two seasons) — reflects on auditioning while pregnant, playing a woman famous for hiding her emotions and growing as an actress.
“For me, the most challenging thing about it was endurance,” says Claire Foy, the 33-year-old British actress whose portrayal of Queen Elizabeth II on season one of Netflix’s The Crown earned her best actress in a drama series Golden Globe and SAG awards earlier this year and has made her the frontrunner to win the equivalent Emmy. As we sit down at Netflix’s FYSee interactive exhibition space in Beverly Hills to record an episode of The Hollywood Reporter’s ‘Awards Chatter’ podcast, Foy continues, “I had a small child, I had the biggest job of my life, I broke my elbow — so it was more of just, like, ‘I can do this!'”
Foy was born and raised near Manchester, England, and briefly flirted with careers in dance and cinematography before committing to acting and eventually studying it at the Oxford School of Drama. Soon after graduating, she began working on TV projects of growing prestige, including several BBC offerings — the 2008 miniseries Little Dorrit; the reboot of the drama series Upstairs Downstairs, which ran from 2010 through 2012; the 2012 miniseries White Heat; and the 2015 miniseries Wolf Hall — as well as Channel 4’s 2011 miniseries The Promise. Her performances generally won widespread praise from critics, but it wasn’t until last Nov. 4 of 2016, when Netflix dropped the entire first season of The Crown, that a much larger audience began to appreciate what a remarkable talent she is.
At the recommendation of casting director Nina Gold, who previously had cast Foy in Wolf Hall (and “who I owe my life to,” the actress says), she was invited to audition for the principal part in the drama series, which Netflix had commissioned with 10 seasons in mind, each chronicling a different chapter of the Queen’s ongoing reign. Informed that it was the brainchild of Peter Morgan, the same man who was behind the 2006 film The Queen and the 2015 Broadway play The Audience (both of which also center around the Queen, and which brought Helen Mirren an Oscar and a Tony, respectively), and that several of its episodes would be directed by Stephen Daldry (who also helmed The Audience), she was intrigued — but faced a dilemma. “I was five months pregnant,” she says with a chuckle. “I was like, ‘Well, I’ll just go in and meet them. I’m not gonna get it, but it’ll give me something to do for the next couple of weeks.'” As it turned out, her physical state was not a deal-breaker and she was brought back for a screen test and then offered the part.
Netflix spared no expense on the prestige production, with seasons one and two costing a combined — and unprecedented — $100 million. The first spans the Queen’s marriage to Philip, Duke of Edinburgh (Matt Smith), in 1947, through the resignation of Winston Churchill (John Lithgow), prime minister of the United Kingdom, in 1955. “That journey that she goes on in that first series is a fascinating one,” Foy says. “‘You think you know someone,’ is essentially the tale — you think you know someone, and actually you don’t know where they’ve come from, and don’t underestimate them, and don’t think that their life has been all wonderful and marvelous and ‘isn’t it great just’ because of the position that they’re in.” (Season two, which is expected in the fall, will pick up from there.)
For Foy, preparing to play the Queen involved juggling not only a massive script and a newborn child, but also studying biographies of the Queen, audio recordings of her giving speeches and footage of her throughout her early life, as well as working with a dialect coach. Once on set, she faced a new set of challenges. The years of the Queen’s life that she was to portray had to be shot out-of-sequence, starting with her coronation, and then jumping backwards and forwards, which was less than ideal. She also somehow had to convey the emotions of a monarch who has made a specialty of hiding her emotions. And, on top of all that, she broke her elbow mid-shoot. But the experience of making the show was never anything less than wonderful and felt less like working on a TV series than on “a very long movie,” she insists. “It more felt like a movie because the attention to detail and the heads of department and all the people that were on the crew were the best — the best of the best of the best of the best. Everyone. All the set dressers, all the costume standbys, all the makeup girls.”
As people have caught up with The Crown, Foy’s profile has grown, and many have speculated about her future. Some have inaccurately suggested that she has elected to leave the show after season two, when, in fact, it always was the plan for a new crop of actors to cycle through at that time. And she’s as excited as anyone to see what happens them: “I’ll be so interested to see how it works and what they do with it — they’re bound to do something really clever because they’re all really clever. And it is that thing of going, ‘It’s not about one person,’ because it hasn’t been — Kristin Scott Thomas has done it, Helen Mirren has done it—” and now Foy. (There are reports that one of the Queen’s sons and his wife have screened The Crown for her and that she has enjoyed it very much. Foy, who briefly met the Queen at a reception for Little Dorrit years ago, can’t help but laugh at the thought of this — but says she’d have a very different reaction if she actually saw the Queen again, having lived in her skin for The Crown: “I’d cry and I’d tell her I love her,” she says.)
As for widespread rumors that Foy may replace Rooney Mara as Lisbeth Salander in the sequel to The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo, she declines to comment, except to confirm that she wants her next project to be a major departure from the sort of period pieces she’s done recently. “I definitely don’t want to do something that’s similar to this [The Crown], just for my own sanity,” she says, before cracking, “but it doesn’t necessarily have to be me going mental.”
Meanwhile, Foy insists that outside of the industry, in the real world, not many pay her much notice at all. “No one gives two shits,” she says with a laugh. “I’m not joking. I literally would have to beg. I’d have to go out in my [Queen’s] wig. I’ve actually been out in my wig and full costume for dinner in London while we’ve been shooting, and even then people [didn’t care]. Me and Matt [Smith] walked into a restaurant together and a woman went, ‘Oh, you look nice!’ I was like, ‘Are you joking?!’ I mean, I was on the Tube — I mean, I can’t even tell you! Like, throw me a bone! Christ!”
More seriously, though, she expresses immense gratitude for the opportunity to star in The Crown and the interest in her that it has bred. “It’s wonderful to be part of something that people have enjoyed,” she says. “It’s very weird to suddenly be in a position where people think that you’re worth their attention — as in, it’s very enlightening and also lovely and also scary. But it’s a very, very interesting position to be in, and I think very few people are ever in this position, and I’m very much following John Lithgow and his sort of way of being in life, which is just, ‘Huh, this is what’s happening now? This is interesting, OK.’ And just receiving it all and just going, ‘This is lovely,’ and really enjoying that people have loved something that I’ve done. Even if at all ends from there, it’s really lovely. Really lovely.”
Variety – Claire Foy is officially playing Lisbeth Salander in “The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo” sequel, “The Girl in the Spider’s Web.”
Variety first reported in May that Foy was the frontrunner for the gig as the precocious Swedish computer hacker.
The new installment of Sony Pictures’ Millennium franchise will commence production in January in Berlin and Stockholm, and the film will be released on Oct. 19, 2018.
The film will team Foy and director Fede Alvarez, who helmed 2016’s “Don’t Breathe” for Sony.
“I couldn’t be more thrilled about Claire taking the reins of the iconic Lisbeth Salander,” he said. “Claire is an incredible, rare talent who will inject a new and exciting life into Lisbeth. I can’t wait to bring this new story to a worldwide audience, with Claire Foy at its center.”
Foy is nominated for an Emmy for her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth in the Netflix series “The Crown,” from Sony Pictures Television. She previously won the Golden Globe and Screen Actors Guild Award for the role. Foy also recently starred as Anne Boleyn in “Wolf Hall” and stars with Andrew Garfield in the drama “Breathe,” which premiered on Sept. 11 at the Toronto Film Festival.
The screenplay for “Girl in the Spider’s Web” was written by Steven Knight along the team of Alvarez & Jay Basu, based on David Lagercrantz’s bestseller. Amy Pascal and Elizabeth Cantillon will join Scott Rudin and Yellow Bird in producing the film.
“The Girl in the Spider’s Web” will be the first in the series to be produced into an English-language movie in its initial adaptation. The previous books in the franchise have been adapted into three Swedish-language films, starring Noomi Rapace. Sony’s “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo,” starring Rooney Mara and Daniel Craig, was a remake of the Swedish film of the same name.
“The Girl in the Spider’s Web” was published in 2015 and is the first novel in the series not authored by Stieg Larsson, the series’ creator and author of the first three Millennium books about Salander and journalist Mikael Blomkvist. Larsson died in 2004.
The studio continues its development of the next book in the Millennium series, “The Girl Who Takes an Eye for an Eye,” which was released this week. Sony’s Columbia Pictures retains the rights to all future Millennium series books.