Made In Dagenham - Rosamund Pike interview
28 January 1979, London
Unusually for an actress who was relatively unknown before being cast as a ‘Bond girl’, Pike’s career took off after playing MI6 agent Miranda Frost in Die Another Day (a role which she won over rivals Saffron Burrows and Alicia Silverstone). There’s no sign of it being a short-lived one, either. Having made a couple of smart choices immediately after the 2002 Bond film with The Libertine opposite Johnny Depp and in Pride & Prejudice next to Keira Knightley. It did, however, look like the ‘007 bimbo curse’ was coming into effect and going to put an end to a blossoming career when she was cast as the crumpet in the ropey computer game adaptation Doom and ridiculous legal thriller Fracture. But a pair of tremendous (but unshowy) performances on stage in The Old Vic production of Patrick Hamilton’s Gaslight and in the Oscar-feted Britflick An Education, have gotten Pike’s acting career firmly back on track.
What she’s up to now?
Playing the Cambridge-educated housewife of a Ford’s motor plant manager in Made In Dagenham – think Calendar Girls but swap the nude photography for blue-collar industrial action and women’s lib. She’s also soon to be seen alongside Jack Black, Owen Wilson and Steve Martin in The Big Year and with Paul Giamatti and Dustin Hoffman in Barney’s Version. And having just been cast opposite Rowan Atkinson in the Johnny English sequel, Pike’s evidently out to prove she’s got comedy acting chops.
On her character in Made in Dagenham
‘Lisa is a middle-class girl who has been educated and has gotten married and followed the path that a lot of women did at that time – not putting her degree to any use – and instead has become a very accomplished wife and mother. It is her friendship with Sally Hawkins’ character that widens the film’s scope in a way. It takes it out of being a working-class struggle, which of course it was not. It was more a struggle for women to gain equality with men in the work force, a struggle that is still going on now.’
Pike writes, mainly travel articles for the broadsheets, is currently working on a screenplay and has been approached with a book deal, of which she says: ‘I think they want anecdotes, memoirs of the film industry, that sort of thing, but I am not really ready to do that yet.’
Made in Dagenham, general release, Fri 1 Oct. See review.