Anna Friel interview

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  • Anna Friel is making her mark Stateside with hit new show Pushing Daisies

    Anna Friel is the Brit actress making it big across the pond in 2008’s hottest new series Pushing Daisies.

    Already Golden Globe-nominated for her role as Chuck, the show has been likened to Amélie and is set to hit our screens later this year.

    What was your reaction when you first saw the show on screen with all its amazingly bright colours?

    I knew from reading the script that it was going to be wonderful, but I didn’t realise how wonderful. We have to wear sunglasses on set sometimes because it’s so bright. I didn’t know about the lustre effect; have you seen how beautiful we look considering we’re working 17 hours a day, every day and doing close-ups at 3am? It gives the show that story book illustration or a forties-style romantic comedy.

    How are you finding working in the US after acting over here?

    It’s a very well-oiled, slick machine in the States. Americans make television like no one else in the world. I’m having the best time, ever. We’ve got Terminator filming round the corner and they’re shooting the new Indiana Jones film next door. It feels special and exciting.

    Ned the pie maker has special powers and brings your character back to life. If you were able to bring someone back from the dead, who would it be?

    John Lennon because I’d love to have met him, Marilyn Monroe to find out if she actually did commit suicide and I sound very over-earnest, but Gandhi, because of the state of our world.

    How did you nail the American accent?

    I think it’s a necessity now for a British actress working in America to have a bang on accent and I’m a really big believer that practice makes perfect. I don’t come out of accent all day and I know that sounds pretentious but it’s become a superstitious discipline.

    How do you juggle motherhood and work?

    It’s hard to juggle both but my daughter Gracie comes to see me on set every day. David (Thewlis) is a wonderful father and we take turns to do a job. There’s no better set for a child to visit than Pushing Daisies – there’s monkeys, windmills and a big sweetie shop. She thinks mummy’s got the best job in the world.

    Were you disappointed the Golden Globes were cancelled?

    It was a bit of a damp squib, I felt like Cinderella not going to the ball. But there are more important things to think about; people have lost their jobs and their houses because of the writer’s strikes. I think if we were going to lose, this was the year for it!

    Pushing Daisies will air on ITV later this year.

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