Your new movie Nox - in a
few words, what is it about, and what can you tell us about your character in
is about two burglars, Peter and Claire, who are breaking into the
villa of a Senator on election night. As the story unfolds, it
transpires that Claire is not only a professional burglar, but also a
contract killer, or is she? Perhaps she is merely the personal assistant
to the Senator?
My character has two sides to her personality, on the one hand she is a
burglar and professional hit woman, on the other she is the diplomatic,
kind, well organised and often put upon personal assistant to the
Senator, who finds himself in a tricky and difficult situation with his
wife. Claire now has to decide what her next step is.
What did you draw upon to bring your character to life, and how
much Brigitte Millar can we actually find in Claire?
In order to prepare for the role, I was actually looking for inspiration
to Glenn Close in Damages and Judi Dench in James
Bond. These two actresses are formidable and embody for me power,
intellect and determination. I think I also possess these qualities and
wanted to bring that to the character. It's important to bring yourself
to the role in order to fully embody it.
How did you get involved with the project
in the first place?
I met director Keyvan Sheikhalishahi
[Keyvan Sheikhalishahi interview - click here]
a couple of years ago in London to discuss another project.
We discovered that we both have a love and passion for intelligent,
tense and tightly scripted thrillers in the Hitchcock style and wanted
to work together. When he sent me the script and asked me, if I wanted
to play Claire, I was so intrigued by the story that I immediately
What can you tell us about your director Keyvan Sheikhalishahi,
and what was your collaboration like?
I love working with Keyvan, because he is so talented, creative and easy
to work with. We actually worked on the scenes prior to filming and
explored different approaches. It's great that Keyvan has firm ideas
about what he wants, but he also gives me freedom to explore other
avenues, which I love. Also, I am one of those actors, who likes to be
on set before everybody else to familiarise myself with the props and
the set and get a feel for the atmosphere. Keyvan really understood that
and let me come on set before anyone else arrived, so I was able to
bring the intensity of the character to the scene.
Do talk about the shoot as such, and
the on-set atmosphere?
I had a wonderful time on set and really enjoyed working with Keyvan, my
fellow actors and the crew. I was completely blown away by the
professionalism and expertise of everybody involved, it was very much
like being on a big budget movie set. Everybody was an expert in their
field and I think that shows in the final product.
Any future projects you'd like to
I have a couple of projects in the pipeline, but had to sign a non
disclosure agreement, so unfortunately can't talk about it.
What got you into acting in the first place, and
did you receive any formal training on the subject?
After my A-levels I wanted to study fine art and become a painter, but
my parents objected as they were worried that I would follow in the
footsteps of my ancestor, the painter Emil Nolde, who during his
lifetime was a struggling artist. However, when I was made redundant
from my boring daytime job, my brother advised me to use this
opportunity to pursue an artistic career. I started going to acting
classes and put myself through drama college - and the rest as they say is
can you tell us about your filmwork prior to Nox?
My first job after drama collge was Emmeline Vance in Harry
Potter, and I think it set me up for all the other roles
that followed. I did quite a few independent feature films and and learned a lot on set, which really prepared me for my role in Spectre.
Having worked on big budget as well as independent movies, where are
the main differences between these two "worlds"?
I think the main differences are in the financing, marketing and
promoting of the big budget movies, and of course that is an undeniable
advantage. However, working on an independent movie can also have its
advantages for an actor, because often you have a lot of creative
freedom. Having said that I have been very lucky in my career as I have
always had so much creative freedom in all my roles. Sam Mendes for example gave me only one
note during my
time on set of Spectre and for the most part he let me
bring my own ideas to the role of Dr. Vogel. But I
really enjoy working on both big budget movies as well as independent
would you describe yourself as an actress, and some of your techniques to
bring your characters to life?
I think I am what they call a 'character actress', and I love playing
strong, intellectual and powerful women, who struggle to decide between
good and evil, and who have neurotic or slightly psychotc tendencies
that are hidden underneath. But recently I auditioned for a comedic role
and really enjoyed it. So I would love to play a comedic character, if
it was offered to me.
Actresses (and indeed
actors) who inspire you?
There are too many to mention them al , but I am a huge fan of Glenn
Close and Judy Dench, they have such a screen presence and
power and make it look so easy. I also love Robert De Niro and Al Pacino,
they are icons, and I'm sure it would be a real eye opener for me to work
Your favourite movies?
Anything by Hitchcock, his films are so well written, shot, lit and
directed, it keeps you on the edge of your seat. I am also a huge vampire
movie fan and love the Twilight saga, because I like the storyline
and the way the films are shot, a lot of stillness and very
atmospheric... also, I am a bit of a sucker for romance... J
If I really want to scare myself, I watch the Alien movies,
which are phenomenally well made and always make me look under my bed,
before I go to sleep ... J
and of course, films your really deplore?
I know there is an audience for all genres, and that's totally ok. But I
don't like violence for violence's sake. I prefer the supense and tension
in a well written thriller that keeps me guessing and biting my nails.
Feeling lucky ?
any of my partnershops yourself
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Anything else you're dying to
mention and I have merely forgotten to ask?
I'd just like to thank you for having me, I really enjoyed this