Olivia Colman is one of Britain’s best actresses, and the world is about to find out why.
On Monday morning (July 16), Netflix unveiled the first photo of Colman as Queen Elizabeth II, who she will play in the third season of The Crown. She takes over the role from Claire Foy, who won an Emmy for playing the young monarch last year, and earned a second nomination for her performance just last week.
Billed as “the most expensive TV series to date” when it launched in 2016, The Crown garnered immediate acclaim around the world, and particularly with Americans, who’ve had a long love affair with the British royal family—both on and off screen.
Its success has propelled its original lead, Foy, into the Hollywood spotlight. She’s landed a number of high-profile parts since, including a leading role in First Man, a much-tipped Oscar contender from La La Land director Damien Chazelle.
Colman, an icon of British television in recent years, is also poised to now find a much-deserved place in the global spotlight. She’s practically a dead cert to return to the Emmys in 2019, should The Crown‘s new season debut in time. But her big year doesn’t stop there.
Colman is playing another queen in Yorgos Lanthimos’s lavish period drama The Favourite, which centers on the later years of Queen Anne’s reign in the early 18th century. The Favourite is an early…well…favorite for next year’s Oscars, and Colman—along with her co-stars Emma Stone and Rachel Weisz—are expected to be in contention in the new year.
Some outside of the UK will already be familiar with Colman’s outstanding body of work, but many may not. From her BAFTA-winning performance in Broadchurch, playing a detective investigating the murder of a local boy, to her scene-stealing comedy in shows like Peep Show and Fleabag, to her Emmy-nominated role in the transatlantic hit The Night Manager, Colman can do it all.
Whether or not she’s on your radar now, get ready for Colman to get the royal treatment she deserves in 2019.