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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).

Claire Foy
Claire Foy at RTS The Promise event March 2011.jpg
Foy in March 2011
Born Claire Elizabeth Foy
(1984-04-16) 16 April 1984 (age 33)
Stockport, Greater Manchester, England
Nationality British
Occupation Actress
Years active 2008–present
Spouse(s) Stephen Campbell Moore (m. 2014)
Children 1

She had main roles as Erin Matthews in the Channel 4 series The Promise (2011) and several other television films and miniseries, including as Kate Balfour in the NBC series Crossbones (2014). She received unanimous praise for her performance as 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. Since 2016, she has portrayed the young Queen Elizabeth II on the Netflix series The Crown, a role for which she has received critical acclaim and won 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, and was nominated for the BAFTA TV Award for Best Actress and a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series.


Early life and educationEdit

Foy was born at Stepping Hill Hospital in Stockport, the daughter of Caroline, who works for a pharmaceutical company, and David Foy, a sales consultant.[2]

She has said that her mother comes from "a massive Irish family."[3][4] 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 aged eight.[5]

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.[6] She graduated in 2007 and moved to Peckham to share a house "with five friends from drama school".[7]


While at the Oxford School of Drama, Foy appeared in the plays Top Girls, Watership Down, Easy Virtue and Touched.[8] After appearing on television,[9] 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.[10]

She starred as the main 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, which she described in an interview at the time as her "favourite job ever".[citation needed]

She played a lead role of Helen in the TV movie The Night Watch, which was based on a Sarah Waters novel.[11] She returned to the stage in February 2013 as Lady Macbeth, alongside James McAvoy in the title role, in Macbeth at the Trafalgar Studios.[12]

In 2015, she played Queen Anne Boleyn in the six-part drama series, Wolf Hall.[13]

Foy's performance as Boleyn was met with critical praise, comparing her to Geneviève Bujold's iconic performance in Anne of the Thousand Days. The Guardian called her portrayal of Anne "chilling, poised and perfectly complex".[citation needed] Foy would go on to be nominated for the 2016 British Academy Television Award for Best Actress.[citation needed]

Personal lifeEdit

Foy is married to actor Stephen Campbell Moore.[14] Together they have one child, a daughter born in March 2015.[15]



Year Title Role Notes
2011 Season of the Witch Anna
Wreckers Dawn
2014 Vampire Academy Sonya Karp
Rosewater Paola
2015 The Lady in the Van Lois
2017 Breathe Diana Cavendish
2018 Unsane Post-production


Year Title Role Notes
2008 Being Human Julia Episode: "Pilot"
2008 Doctors Chloe Webster Episode: "The Party's Over"
2008 Little Dorrit Amy Dorrit Miniseries
2009 10 Minute Tales Woman Episode: "Through the Window"
2010 Terry Pratchett's Going Postal Adora Belle Dearheart Miniseries
2010 Pulse Hannah Carter Television film
2010–2012 Upstairs Downstairs Lady Persephone "Persie" Towyn Main role
2011 Promise, TheThe Promise Erin Matthews Main role
2011 Night Watch, TheThe Night Watch Helen Giniver Television film
2012 Hacks Kate Loy Television film
2012 White Heat Charlotte Pew Main role
2014 Crossbones Kate Balfour Main role
2014 The Great War: The People's Story Helen Bentwich Documentary miniseries
2014 Frankenstein and the Vampyre:
A Dark and Stormy Night
Narrator (voice) Television film
2015 Wolf Hall Anne Boleyn Miniseries
2016–present Crown, TheThe Crown Queen Elizabeth II Main role

Awards and nominationsEdit

Year Award Category Work Result
2009 Royal Television Society Best Actor - Female Little Dorrit Nominated
2015 Critics' Choice Television Awards Best Supporting Actress - Miniseries or Television Film Wolf Hall Nominated
Gold Derby Awards Best Miniseries/TV Movie Actress Nominated
2016 British Academy Television Awards Best Actress Nominated
Satellite Awards Best Actress - Miniseries or Television Film Nominated
Monte-Carlo Television Festival Best Actress - Long Fiction Program Nominated
2017 Golden Globe Awards Best Actress - Television Series Drama The Crown Won
Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Leading Role Won
Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Drama Series Nominated
Broadcasting Press Guild Awards Best Actress Nominated
Dorian Awards TV Performance of the Year - Actress Nominated
British Academy Television Awards Best Actress Nominated
Television Critics Association Awards Individual Achievement in Drama Nominated
Gold Derby Awards Best Drama Actress Nominated
Primetime Emmy Awards Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series Nominated


  1. ^ "BBC - Press Office - Little Dorrit cast announced". 
  2. ^ "Actress Claire Foy: 'It would be terrible to be turned into a paparazzi person'". Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  3. ^ "Claire Foy on playing Anne Boleyn and getting her head chopped off". Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  4. ^ " - Connecting People Through News". Retrieved 8 January 2017. 
  5. ^ "A class act: Claire Foy on criticism, tumours and embarrassing sex". The Independent. 18 February 2012. 
  6. ^ Showcase Presentation 2007 - One and Three Year Students
  7. ^ "Little Claire Foy" (4 December 2008)
  8. ^ Royal National Theatre: Claire Foy (January 2008) Archived 20 January 2016 at
  9. ^ "CLAIRE FOY". 24 September 2017. 
  10. ^ David Benedict. "Baby Girl/DNA/The Miracle - Variety". Variety. Retrieved 24 September 2017. 
  11. ^ "Interview: Claire Foy". Channel 4. 2011. Retrieved 2011-02-22. 
  12. ^ Nicola Merrifield (4 January 2013). "Claire Foy to play Lady Macbeth opposite James McAvoy". The Stage. Retrieved 22 November 2013. 
  13. ^ Plunkett, John (3 March 2016). "Poldark's topless scything fails to cut it with Royal Television Society judges". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 March 2016. 
  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 5 February 2017. 

External linksEdit