Claire Foy Gets Her Final Jewel In ‘The Crown’ With Best Actress Emmy Win

By Patrick Hipes, Peter White


Claire Foy, who has wrapped her two-season run as Queen Elizabeth in Netflix’s The Crown, got a royal send-off Monday when she won the Emmy Award for Outstanding Drama Actress.

The victory came after she was nominated in the same category last year for Season 1 of the series. She lost to Elisabeth Moss of Hulu’s The Handmaid’s Tale, who was also nominated tonight in a loaded category that included The Americans‘ Keri Russell, Sandra Oh’s Killing Eve, Tatiana Maslany for Orphan Black, and Westworld‘s Evan Rachel Wood.

“This wasn’t supposed to happen,” Foy said onstage after her victory, adding, “I had the most extraordinary 2 1/2 years of my life — I was given a role I never thought I’d get a chance to play.”

While the first season covered her marriage to Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, the second season saw Foy’s Elizabeth have to deal with the Suez Crisis in 1956; the retirement of her third Prime Minister, Harold Macmillan, in 1963; a visit from JFK and Jackie; the birth of Prince Edward in 1964; and issues of monogamy in her own marriage.

Foy has had a strange year with regards to The Crown. In March, producers acknowledged that Foy was paid less than her co-star Matt Smith to appear in the 20-episode run, comments that caused a royal stir. The actress admitted that she was “surprised” to find herself in the center of the controversy. “Anything that I’m at the center of like that is very very odd, and feels very, very out of ordinary,” she said at the time. “But I’m not [surprised about the interest in the story] in the sense that it was a female-led drama. I’m not surprised that people saw [the story] and went, ‘Oh, that’s a bit odd.’ But I know that Matt feels the same that I do, that it’s odd to find yourself at the center [of something] that you didn’t particularly ask for.”

Onstage on Monday, Foy dedicated the win to the next cast of The Crown, including Oliva Colman, who replaces her as the next iteration of Elizabeth. And she capped her speech by thanking Smith.

Foy won’t be out of the spotlight too soon: the next commercial ad on NBC after her win was for Sony’s The Girl in the Spider’s Web, which stars Foy as Lisbeth Salander in the next iteration of the thriller series.

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