Claire Foy reveals her first director shouted at her to ‘Start Acting, Darling’

Claire Foy reveals her first director insulted her by shouting, 'Start Acting, Darling!'
Credit: Netflix

The beloved actress, Claire Foy, who is best known for her portrayal of the young Queen Elizabeth II in the Netflix drama series The Crown, recently returned to the Happy Sad Confused podcast, with Andrew Scott making his debut on the special holiday-themed episode. The duo are on the promotional press tour for the romantic fantasy film “All of Us Strangers,” which will be released in the United Kingdom on Friday, January 26, 2024, by Searchlight Pictures.

Despite the episode being a fun listen, the guests talked about the film while they also recreated an iconic When Harry Met Sally scene! The 39-year-old British actress opened up about an incident that happened early in her career and left her taken aback. Recounting her experience, she revealed how the first director she ever worked with, in a rather demeaning manner, shouted at her to “Start Acting, Darling!” which is the worst note she’s ever gotten.

Foy remembered, “First job I ever did on TV, which was ‘Being Human.’ The pilot, with Russell Tovey and Andrea Riseborough. I didn’t know what I was doing and he shouted it at me.” 

She continues to add, “It’s taken me a long time to accept that it was actually a very unkind thing to do to a 23-year-old on their first job ever.” She said that “instead of taking [a newcomer actor] under your wing and helping them,” as perhaps a kinder filmmaker would do, her director was “just shouting at them in front of everyone.” Foy added, “Sometimes not very nice directors need someone to bully on set, and I was like that person.”

While opening up about the bullying Foy faced on the set of her first series, her co-star Andrew Scott joined the conversation by turning to her and agreeing, “Oh, that’s horrible.” When Foy revealed that the director “doesn’t really work anymore,” Scott responded, “But you fucking do!”

The revelation made by the actress has since been shared online with many of her followers coming in support of her. One X user (formerly known as Twitter) commented, “She should have said ‘I will, when you start directing!'” A second one wrote, “Well Claire certainly took it to another level!” Whereas, a third one left a comment stating, “Ok and I respect that this probably sucked but millions of people have shitty bosses and they say way worse things than “start acting darling.'”

In the end, the online support shows that despite the initial setback, Foy’s resilience and unwavering passion for her craft have propelled her to become the remarkable actress we know today. For the latter, she received a nomination for the Golden Globe Award and the BAFTA Award for Best Supporting Actress. Most recently, she’s gaining Oscar buzz for her supporting performance as Adam’s mother in Andrew Haigh’s “All of Us Strangers.”

Watch the entire conversation on Josh Horowitz’s YouTube channel below: 

Claire Foy & Andrew Scott talk ALL OF US STRANGERS, FLEABAG, SHERLOCK I Happy Sad Confused

About ‘All of Us Strangers’

The romantic fantasy film written and directed by Andrew Haigh, and based on the 1987 novel Strangers by Taichi Yamada. It is the second feature adaptation of the novel, after the Japanese film The Discarnates (1988). Apart from Claire Foy and Andrew Scott, the film stars Paul Mescal, and Jamie Bell. It premiered at the 50th Telluride Film Festival on August 31, 2023, and was released in the United States on December 22, 2023. It has received critical acclaim and was named one of the top ten independent films of 2023 by the National Board of Review. 

The official synopsis of the film reads: 

“One night in his near-empty tower block in contemporary London, Adam (Andrew Scott) has a chance encounter with a mysterious neighbor Harry (Paul Mescal), which punctures the rhythm of his everyday life. As a relationship develops between them, Adam is preoccupied with memories of the past and finds himself drawn back to the suburban town where he grew up, and the childhood home where his parents (Claire Foy and Jamie Bell), appear to be living, just as they were on the day they died, 30 years before.” 

Watch the official trailer below:

All of Us Strangers | Official Trailer | Searchlight Pictures