Interview: Olivia Colman
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Olivia Colman, best known for her successful and vastly differing roles in Peep Show and Broadchurch, is proving herself as one of the country’s most versatile actresses. Colman is about to take on another drama role, in the gothic BBC2 adaptation of best-selling novel The Thirteenth Tale – in which she plays Margaret, a reclusive literature lover who gets sucked into the mysterious world and dark past of writer Vida Winter (Vanessa Redgrave.) Here she talks about the project. What’s The Thirteenth Tale about and who do you play? It’s quite difficult to describe, there are lots of pieces to it; flashbacks and modern day - a thriller and ghost story. It’s very exciting, it looks into this fascinating woman’s life and you see everything that’s happened, but it’s not necessary clear and you have to piece it together as you go along. I play Margaret, who is a writer and she is asked by Vida to go and write her life story. She’s a little confused as to why she’s been asked in particular but that becomes clear later on, as Margaret has something in her background that Vida is interested in. What attracted you to the project? Is it too shallow to say that Vanessa Redgrave was in it and I wanted to work with her? That was a big part of it, but it’s also a beautiful story - one that you read for the first time and want to re-read it, to put in what you know into all the scenes you’ve enjoyed along the way. It was gripping. You have some intense two-hander scenes with Vanessa. How was the experience?
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