Interview with Carey Mulligan

December 30, 2007

When Carey Mulligan asks, she usually gets. The 22-year-old actress made her first lucky strike, having never been to drama school or university, when she wrote to Julian Fellowes with a request for advice and support. He introduced her to friends who offered her an audition, leading to her role as Kitty in Joe Wright’s Pride and Prejudice at the age of 19. Next came the BBC’s acclaimed adaptation of Bleak House

Landing the role of Nina in the Royal Court’s Seagull this year was another piece of wish-fulfilment. No sooner had she told her boyfriend she would love to play the part than her agent rang. At first, Mulligan thought she had taken on too much: ‘I would come away at the end of every evening in the first week of rehearsals crying. I felt like the smallest, tiniest person in the room’ but it soon became one of the happiest times of her life and garnered glowing reviews.

Mulligan is now rehearsing for a small part in the Jim Sheridan film Brothers and will start on an independent British film in March. Next on the wishlist is a move away from costume drama. ‘I want a gun and a car chase,’ she says with a laugh, although she would make an exception to play Ophelia to Jude Law’s Hamlet in the 2009 Kenneth Branagh production. In true Mulligan style, she has ‘told everyone I know just in case they happen to know Kenneth Branagh’.

This interview first appeared in Observer Review’s New Faces of 2008 piece


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