Monday 5 December 2016

Meet the Irish model who catches Prince Phillip's eye in Netflix's The Crown

Sasha Brady

Published 16/11/2016 | 09:18

Maeve Madden and Matt Smith in scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6
Maeve Madden and Matt Smith in scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6
Scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6
Maeve Madden/Instagram

Irish fitness blogger Maeve Madden has landed her first TV acting role alongside Matt Smith in Netflix's The Crown.

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The fitness guru is "amazed" to find herself the centre of attention after landing a role as a waitress in the $100 million drama, which is already being compared to Downton Abbey.

This is the first TV role for the London based Irish model after taking a few acting classes at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Arts (RADA).

"I'd been to casting auditions for some TV adverts but then an opportunity for The Crown came along. I honestly didn't feel ready. I'd only started taking acting classes at RADA but I didn't want to say no," she told Independent.ie.

Scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6
Scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6

"There's nothing worse than missing out on an opportunity that could change your entire future."

The grand saga tells the story of the early days of England's Queen Elizabeth II's (Claire Foy) reign as it pulls back the doors on Buckingham Palace.

Maeve plays the part of a waitress in a Soho gentleman's club who makes an appearance in episode six. The stunning blonde catches the eye of Queen Elizabeth's husband, Prince Phillip (Matt Smith) - who is portrayed as a bit of a playboy prince with a wandering eye.

"I'd originally auditioned for the role of a receptionist but the casting directors decided that they wanted someone plainer for that part and suggested I audition for the role of the waitress," the Newry native explained.

Scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6
Scenes from Netflix productio 'The Crown' - Episode 6

"It was nerve-wracking. I had to fake a British accent too. I auditioned three times over the course of a few months before I landed the part.

Shooting took two full days to complete but Maeve said, despite the long hours, she loved every minute of it.

Real life: Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II and Matt Smith as Prince Philip in Netflix series 'The Crown'
Real life: Claire Foy as Queen Elizabeth II and Matt Smith as Prince Philip in Netflix series 'The Crown'

"The set was incredible, it looks every bit as grand as you'd imagine and all the cast and crew were so lovely. Honestly, everyone was so nice. And no detail is spared. The costume designer even made sure I was wearing 1950's-style bras and stockings.

Naturally the first-time actress felt "nervous and shy" filming her scenes but she said Doctor Who star Smith put her at ease.

Image: The Crown/Netflix
Image: The Crown/Netflix

"Matt Smith was so dreamy in real life. We repeatedly had to flirt with each other for two days. I would have happily done that forever," she joked.

The fitness blogger admitted she's caught the acting bug and said she's hoping to land more roles. But she's keeping quiet on the details of her auditions, just like she did with The Crown, until she actually sees herself on screen.

"Nothing is guaranteed. I wanted to keep quiet about it until I actually saw myself on TV. I didn't know how much they would chop or change my part but I was delighted with how it turned out.

"My friends and family have been sending me screenshots. Even now when I look at it I'm surprised. I keep thinking 'Oh my God, that's me!' I'm over the moon," she said.

Fitness guru Maeve Madden
Fitness guru Maeve Madden

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