‘Fifty Shades of Grey’s’ Rachel Skarsten to Play Queen Elizabeth I on ‘Reign’

Actress will debut during the Season 2 finale of The CW’s regal drama

Last Updated: March 10, 2015 @ 2:13 PM

Rachel Skarsten is getting the royal treatment.

The “Fifty Shades of Grey” actress has been cast to play a young Queen Elizabeth I on The CW’s “Reign.” She will debut Thursday, March 19 during the Season 2 finale of the network’s regal, romance-filled drama.

Born to Henry VIII and Anne Boleyn, Elizabeth assumed the throne of England in 1558. Her character has been referenced frequently throughout the first two seasons of the show, which focuses primarily on the time Mary, Queen of Scots (Adelaide Kane) spent living in France.

As TheWrap previously reported, The CW renewed “Reign” for an additional season in January. Queen Elizabeth is said to be one of the primary focuses of the upcoming Season 3, with her on-screen arrival acting as a major catalyst for how the story will unfold.

“I’m delighted to cast Rachel Skarsten as Elizabeth, a female monarch still in her twenties, early yet in her rule. She is a beautiful, cunning and brave mix of opposites: a young woman hardened too soon by life’s  events, but vulnerable when it comes to love,” executive producer Laurie McCarthy told TheWrap in a statement.

Prior to sharing the screen with Dakota Johnson and Jamie Dornan in Focus Features’ steamy hit “Fifty Shades of Grey,” Skarsten starred on multiple seasons of Syfy’s “Lost Girl.” She also appeared on two episodes of The CW’s “Beauty and the Beast” and had an arc on the Canadian police drama “Flashpoint.”

APA and Creative Drive Artists represent her.

“Reign” airs Thursdays at 9 p.m. on The CW.