Claire Foy opens up about her surprise return to The Crown

The actor returned for flashback scenes because the show is 'lovely' and she's an Imelda Staunton fan

THE CROWN 2016> Netflix Streaming Services production with Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II and Matt Smith as the Duke of Edinburgh
Claire Foy played Queen Elizabeth in the first two series. (PA Images/Alamy)

Claire Foy has revealed that her love of Imelda Staunton was a big part of her decision to make a surprise return to The Crown.

The actor starred as a young Queen Elizabeth in the first two seasons of the Netflix hit - which aired in 2016 and 2017 - and won an Emmy for her performance.

With the monarch ageing as the story about the royals went along, Olivia Colman stepped into the role for the following two series and Staunton took over for the fifth, which was unveiled in November.

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However, Foy thrilled viewers when she returned to the show in flashback scenes in the latest series, with some saying they screamed and were tearful when she popped up.

The Crown TV Series (2016-) UK / USA Created by Peter Morgan 2017 Season 2, episode 10 : Mystery Man Director :  Benjamin Caron Claire Foy
Claire Foy returned to The Crown for flashback scenes. (PA Images/Alamy)

Asked on The Graham Norton Show about reprising the role, she said: “I went back and did it again because it is a lovely thing to do and I really love Imelda (Staunton)."

"I think she is amazing," she added.

The star, 38, also talked about her Oscar-nominated film Women Talking, which is about women living in an isolated Mennonite community.

She had to keep things very simple when it came to her costumes and admitted that not shaving her legs while she shot the film was “horrible”.

Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown S5. (Netflix)
Imelda Staunton as Queen Elizabeth II in The Crown series five. (Netflix)

“We had no hair and makeup at all and wore polyester dresses so what got us through filming was the thought of a party at the end when we could wear makeup and shave our legs,” she said.

Read more: Gillian Anderson defends The Crown for 'restraint' in dealing with royal controversy

“I thought not worrying about shaving would be a real moment of empowerment but actually it was horrible and reminded me of puberty!”

The Graham Norton Show is on BBC One on Friday 27 January at 10.40pm and is also available on BBC iPlayer.

Watch: Claire Foy says she hates 'the strong female characters concept'