The Info List - Claire Foy

Claire Elizabeth Foy (born 16 April 1984) is an English actress. She studied drama and screen studies at Liverpool John Moores University and trained at the Oxford School of Drama, where she appeared in four plays, including Watership Down. She made her screen debut in the pilot episode of Being Human (2008) and in an episode of the BBC soap opera Doctors (2008). Following her professional stage debut at the Royal National Theatre, she played the title role in the BBC One production of Little Dorrit[1] (2008), and made her film debut as Anna in Season of the Witch (2011).

She had main roles as Erin Matthews in the Channel 4 series The Promise (2011) and as Kate Balfour in the NBC series Crossbones (2014). She received praise for her performance as the ill-fated queen Anne Boleyn in BBC2's Wolf Hall (2015), for which she was nominated for the British Academy Television Award for Best Actress and the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Movie/Miniseries.

From 2016-17, she portrayed the young Queen Elizabeth II on the Netflix series The Crown, a role for which she won the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama and two Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series, and was nominated for the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress and a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. In 2018, she will star alongside Ryan Gosling as Janet Shearon in Damien Chazelle's biographical drama First Man and portray Lisbeth Salander in the crime thriller The Girl in the Spider's Web. In 2018, Foy starred as Sawyer Valentini in Steven Soderbergh's thriller Unsane.

Early life

Foy was born in Stockport. She has said that her mother comes from "a massive Irish family."[2][3] She grew up in Manchester and Leeds, the youngest of three children. Her family later moved to Longwick, Buckinghamshire for her father's job as a salesman for Rank Xerox. Her parents divorced when she was eight.[4]

She attended Aylesbury High School, a girls' grammar school, from the age of twelve; she then attended Liverpool John Moores University, studying drama and screen studies. She also trained in a one-year course at the Oxford School of Drama.[5] She graduated in 2007 and moved to Peckham to share a house "with five friends from drama school".[6]


While at the Oxford School of Drama, Foy appeared in the plays Top Girls, Watership Down, Easy Virtue and Touched.[7] After appearing on television,[8] she made her professional stage debut in DNA and The Miracle, two of a trio of one acts directed by Paul Miller at the Royal National Theatre in London; the other one act was Baby Girl.[9]

She starred as the protagonist Amy Dorrit in BBC mini-series Little Dorrit, and was nominated for an RTS Award. She went on to appear in TV film Going Postal and in the Medieval adventure film Season of the Witch alongside Nicolas Cage. She starred in the BBC revival of Upstairs Downstairs as Lady Persephone. Foy co-starred in the Channel 4 mini-series The Promise, broadcast in February 2011.

She played a lead role of Helen in the TV movie The Night Watch, which was based on a Sarah Waters novel.[10] She returned to the stage in February 2013 as Lady Macbeth, alongside James McAvoy in the title role, in Macbeth at the Trafalgar Studios.[11]

In 2015, Foy played the English queen Anne Boleyn in the six-part drama series, Wolf Hall.[12] Foy's performance as Boleyn was met with critical praise, comparing her to Geneviève Bujold's iconic performance in Anne of the Thousand Days. She would go on to be nominated for the 2016 British Academy Television Award for Best Actress.[13]

In 2016, she began portraying the young Queen Elizabeth II in Peter Morgan's Netflix biographical drama series The Crown, opposite Matt Smith as her consort Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh and John Lithgow as Sir Winston Churchill. Her performance earned her the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress – Television Series Drama and the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series. She was also nominated for the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress and the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. She reprised the role in the second season, before exiting the series and passing the role over to actress Olivia Colman, who will portray the queen in middle-age. She also played Diana Cavendish in the biographical drama film Breathe (2017) opposite Andrew Garfield as Robin Cavendish.

She will next play Janet Shearon, wife of American astronaut Neil Armstrong in Damien Chazelle's biopic First Man, and star as Lisbeth Salander in the thriller The Girl in the Spider's Web.

Personal life

Foy was married to actor Stephen Campbell Moore.[14] Together they have a daughter, Ivy Rose, born in March 2015.[15] The couple announced their separation in February 2018, stating that they "have been [separated] for some time."[16]



Year Title Role Notes
2011 Season of the Witch Anna
Wreckers Dawn
2014 Vampire Academy Sonya Karp
Rosewater Paola Gourley
2015 The Lady in the Van Lois
2017 Breathe Diana Cavendish
2018 Unsane Sawyer Valentini
First Man Janet Shearon Post-production
The Girl in the Spider's Web Lisbeth Salander Filming

Television films

Year Title Role Notes
2010 Pulse Hannah Carter
2011 Night Watch, TheThe Night Watch Helen Giniver
2012 Hacks Kate Loy
2014 Frankenstein and the Vampyre: A Dark and Stormy Night Narrator

Television series

Year Title Role Notes
2008 Being Human Julia Beckett Episode: "Pilot"
2008 Doctors Chloe Webster Episode: "The Party's Over"
2008 Little Dorrit Amy Dorrit 14 episodes
2009 10 Minute Tales Woman Episode: "Through the Window"
2010 Terry Pratchett's Going Postal Adora Belle Dearheart 2 episodes
2010–12 Upstairs Downstairs Lady Persephone Towyn 9 episodes
2011 Promise, TheThe Promise Erin Matthews 4 episodes
2012 White Heat Charlotte Pew 6 episodes
2014 Crossbones Kate Balfour 9 episodes
2014 The Great War: The People's Story Helen Bentwich 2 episodes
2015 Wolf Hall Anne Boleyn 6 episodes
2016–17 Crown, TheThe Crown Queen Elizabeth II 20 episodes

Awards and nominations


  1. ^ "BBC - Press Office - Little Dorrit cast announced". BBC. 
  2. ^ "Claire Foy on playing Anne Boleyn and getting her head chopped off". heraldscotland.com. Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  3. ^ "PressReader.com - Connecting People Through News". pressreader.com. Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  4. ^ "A class act: Claire Foy on criticism, tumours and embarrassing sex". The Independent. 18 February 2012. 
  5. ^ "Showcase Presentation 2007 - One and Three Year Students" (PDF). 
  6. ^ ""Little Claire Foy" (4 December 2008)". Archived from the original on 16 June 2009. 
  7. ^ Royal National Theatre: Claire Foy (January 2008) Archived 20 January 2016 at Archive.is
  8. ^ "CLAIRE FOY". 24 September 2017. 
  9. ^ David Benedict. "Baby Girl/DNA/The Miracle – Variety". Variety. Retrieved 24 September 2017. 
  10. ^ "Interview: Claire Foy". Channel 4. 2011. Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  11. ^ Nicola Merrifield (4 January 2013). "Claire Foy to play Lady Macbeth opposite James McAvoy". The Stage. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  12. ^ Plunkett, John (3 March 2016). "Poldark's topless scything fails to cut it with Royal Television Society judges". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 March 2016. 
  13. ^ "2016 Television Leading Actress - BAFTA Awards". British Academy of Film and Television Arts. Retrieved 1 April 2018. 
  14. ^ Radio Times, 29 January 2015, p. 16
  15. ^ Pavia, Lucy (9 December 2016). "Claire Foy on playing The Queen: 'Being likeable all the time isn't real life'". Marie Claire. Retrieved 1 April 2018. 
  16. ^ Stone, Natalie (22 February 2018). "The Crown's Claire Foy Separates from Her Husband After 4 Years of Marriage". People. Retrieved 1 April 2018. 

External links