Claire Foy, John Lithgow and ‘The Crown’ team backstage at the 2017 Golden Globe Awards

January 9, 2017

by Carla Hay

The 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards took place on January 8, 2017, at the Beverly Hilton in Beverly Hills, California.

“THE CROWN”

Golden Globe wins:

  • Best Television Series – Drama
  • Best Actress in a Television Series – Drama (Claire Foy)

Here is what these Golden Globe winners said backstage in the Golden Globe Awards press room.

"The Crown" star Claire Foy at the 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, on January 8, 2017.
Claire Foy at the 74th Annual Golden Globe Awards at the Beverly Hilton Hotel in Beverly Hills, California, on January 8, 2017. (Photo by Kevork Djansezian/NBC)

BACKSTAGE INTERVIEW

Claire, if you had a chance to sit down with Queen Elizabeth and have tea with her, what  would be one question you want to ask her now that you’ve been playing her for the television series?

Claire Foy: I’m really shamefully going to nick Andy Harris’ reply to this which is “Has she watched it?” And then probably I just like to hear her talk for about two hours that would be nice.

Peter and Stephen, what fascinated you about this and why do you think you were able to get such an amazing budget for it?

Peter Morgan (creator): We didn’t ask for that. Netflix gave it to us. I just sort of started this journey when writing the film “The Queen.” And it and even that was by accident. I started just thinking it was interesting what happened between the queen in her prime ministers. And that just grew and grew and grew.

And I wanted to know how must have been for her with her first prime minister, who was [Winston] Churchill, and the next thing I know these stories were coming back to me and I started thinking this is a much longer running thing, and now we’re shooting the second season at the moment. I hope that’s answered your question

How have you reacted to “The Crown’s” popularity? How did you pick John Lithgow to play Churchill?

Stephen Daldry (director): John is a very good person to answer the question about how on earth how surprising the response has been around the world.

Lithgow: It is astonishing. It delights all of us. We knew we were doing something fine. I think from day one, we knew this was going to be extraordinary. But we didn’t we didn’t dream that it would be massively popular internationally.

I suppose it’s because the monarchy is the subjective everybody’s attention and obsession internationally. And Peter and Stephen have just found a way of turning that very, very public family into an extremely fascinating private world ever and everybody connects with it. And you have to ask them about casting me. I didn’t do it myself.

Netflix chief content officer Ted Sarandos said that “The Crown” could feasibly go on six or seven years. Any thoughts on that?

Morgan: The danger of writing a story about someone with a long life is the story goes on and on … We’re filming the second season at the moment, and that would take us through to 1964. We were there for about three episodes in at the moment, and that starts in the Suez crisis and then as Britain goes into the ‘60s, the world changes you know if we leave behind a certain kind of Britain and we enter a new kind of Britain.

And we will then at the end of Season 2, we will reach a point where we will have to start thinking about a new cast because our actors would reached what I think is the limit that they could reasonably play and we haven’t had those conversations with Netflix about going forward. I think they would like to, and I think we would like to, but it’s only now really that will have those conversations

John, how difficult was it for you to master Churchill’s speech patterns and the physicality?

Lithgow: It was difficult but it was fun it was all fun and I had tremendous help from the costumer Michele Clapton and the makeup artist Ivana Primorac and a remarkable dialect coach William Conacher, who helped me with not just the dialect but the sort of machine dream of changes explosiveness that was William. And I have to say he worked just as hard with the British actors as you did with me. He was remarkable. Put all those things together, and it came very, very easily. And I think the bottom line the greatest asset of all was the lines that were written for me.

Daldry: The bottom line is that John Lithgow is one of the great actors of our age. And that we had him in our show was a great gift, and it was a wonderful opportunity for us to explore the character Churchill. We’re blessed to have you, sir.

Do you have a favorite Churchill quote or anecdote?

Lithgow: There was a wonderful moment that Stephen and I derived. We wanted to do something appalling for Churchill to demonstrate that he should not be prime minister. There was a moment when he stands up in a cabinet meeting and staggers out of the room.

And it was my idea that he actually reach right straight into his trousers. This was inspired by a quote from Churchill when someone pointed out that he’d left his fly buttons open. And his quote was, “It’s not a problem. A dead bird never leaves its nest.”