Claire Foy has to preserve her phone battery, because it’s dying and she’s far from home. Oh, and she just got an Emmy nomination, which means her line is going to be ringing off the hook for the next several hours. On Thursday morning, the star was tapped for best actress in a drama series for her performance as Queen Elizabeth II in Netflix’s sumptuous series The Crown. Foy, who is currently in London, did not watch the nomination livestream, instead preferring to go for an early evening stroll in Hampstead Heath.
“I just got a text message about it, which was lovely,” she tells Vanity Fair.
It’s Foy’s first nomination, and the first of several nominations for the series, which was highlighted in multiple other categories—including outstanding drama series, directing, costume design, and more, as well as an acting nod for her co-star John Lithgow. “Amazing!” Foy says when she’s told, unaware until now of the show’s eventful Hollywood morning. She does let out a small “aw” when she finds out that co-star Jared Harris, who turned in a heartrending performance as King George VI, wasn’t nominated for his work. “It’s so difficult,” she says diplomatically of the Emmys process.
So, how will Foy celebrate her first-ever Emmy nod? By . . . not doing anything, really. “I won’t do any big celebration or anything like that. I’ll just walk across this bloody park for the next few minutes, probably—I’m trying to get out!”
As for how she would celebrate if she was channeling the character she plays? That would also be . . . a lot of nothing, really. “She’d just play it all down,” Foy muses. “I think, that’s her style. She’d just crack on.”
What about the next season of The Crown—which will also be Foy’s last, as Season 3 will jump ahead in the queen’s life? The actress can’t say much about the plot, but she does note that she’s excited for viewers to see the way the show approaches Elizabeth “coming into her middle age.”
“I’m constantly kind of surprised by her . . . she’s like all of us as you get older and as you change through life,” the actress says. “It’s interesting to watch how she approaches that and deals with that as a person as opposed to a monarch.”
Though it was rumored by an insider that the high-profile royal has actually watched The Crown, Foy doesn’t think that’s true, saying she’d prefer to “err on the side of no.”
“The only person who knows is her,” she adds. “I don’t have any direct communication with her, so I’ll never know.”
Mere mortals might also never know if the monarch decides to keep an eye on how The Crown performs at the Emmys this September—though the visual of Queen Elizabeth II tucking into an awards show makes Foy laugh.
“I don’t think she will,” she says. “Probably not. Do you think she’ll watch the Emmys?”
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