Olivia Colman Opens Up About The Pressures Of Portraying Queen Elizabeth

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Forty-four-year-old actress Olivia Colman secured the coveted role of Queen Elizabeth in the third series of the hit show The Crown. She replaced Claire Foy who took on the part for the prior two seasons. Although Colman is honored and grateful to receive the prestigious part, she admits that it’s harder than she thought it would be. Portraying a living member of the royal family comes with a lot of pressure, according to the Daily Mail.

The actress has conquered a variety of roles throughout her career, even portraying royal characters in the past. This past year she inhabited the role of Queen Anne in the drama The Favorite. Set in the 18th century, the series follows Queen Anne’s journey to the throne in war-torn England. Following her experience, Colman now says it is easier to portray a figure from history than one who is still living.

“It could not be more different. I find the harder is Queen Elizabeth because everyone knows what she looks like, everyone knows what she sounds like, everyone has an opinion on whether the casting is right,” Colman said in comparing her role as Queen Anne to her portrayal of Queen Elizabeth.

The actress knew the expectations she would be facing prior to taking on the difficult role. This is a part that has been portrayed several times already throughout the years, even by the likes of Helen Mirren. Mirren took on the role of Queen Elizabeth for the 2006 drama The Queen. The film would later earn Mirren an Academy Award for Best Actress.

Knowing she had a lot to live up to made the role even more appealing to Colman, however. In fact, the actress loves the challenge. She says that the opportunity to portray a wide variety of compelling characters was what caused her to develop a passion for acting in the first place. “And I am loving the job, I am loving trying to play her, but I find her harder,” she said.

The third series of The Crown is scheduled to premiere in 2019, shortly followed by the fourth season. Enamored fans are excited about the short wait time for the fourth series, eager to find out how the show will progress. There was a much longer waiting period between series two and three, as the second aired in December of 2017.

The show will carry on from 1964 and span to 1976, producers say.