Part of the reason why I love acting is that you do hope that somehow your work will connect to people and somehow expand their consciousness somewhat, and being able to challenge notions of prejudice through work - through my work - is really thrilling.
I had done lots of theater and I really wanted to do screen work. I said to my agent, "Look, I really want to do screen work and I want to concentrate on that now" and he said, "Well, it's going to be tough for you."
I read the books and I really, really wanted to play the part. I started kundalini yoga, kickboxing and running, and completely changed my diet. I felt I wanted to undergo what was necessary for the part. I love a challenge. And I love defying limitation, gender stereotypes and people’s expectations of me as an actress.
They told me I would find it difficult to find work because of the way that I look and they weren't wrong. [laughs] I thought, "Well, I'll prove you wrong" because I genuinely believed that the world was a more diverse place than they perhaps viewed it to be.
The freedom to be someone else entirely and be different versions of something. That's what I loved and I loved watching movies and I loved watching television, I loved reading books. That kind of escapism into another world was my favorite thing.
I did rhythmic gymnastics and I absolutely adored it. I was in the squad for Sussex. I wasn't stupendous, but it was something that I was good at and I really loved the combination of discipline and expression. That, to me, was just dreamy.