Jodie Comer has said she went through a period while struggling for acting work where she “stunk of desperation”.
The Liverpudlian actress, who has had global success in the past few years thanks to her portrayal of psychopathic Russian assassin Villanelle in the hit show Killing Eve, spoke about her rise to fame in a new interview with British Vogue.
Her ability to switch between accents and create a killer who is both fearsome and likeable has seen the 26-year-old pick up BAFTA and Emmy awards for her role in the show, but her seemingly meteoric rise to fame has come after years of hard work.
Comer told the magazine she struggled to find work earlier in her career.
“I remember there was a year where I didn’t work for eight or nine months,” she said.
“You get up in the morning, get yourself ready, get to the train station, two-hour train, get to your audition, you’re in there for 10 minutes, and then you’re coming all the way back home. Sometimes I was doing it three times a week.
“What I realised, the more that I wasn’t working, was that I stunk of desperation, basically. It became, ‘I need the job’. And then you go into auditions and they can smell it.”
Comer appeared in series such as Holby City, Waterloo Road and Doctors early in her career, and starred in shows such as My Mad Fat Diary and Doctor Foster before landing the role as Villanelle in Killing Eve, which launched in 2018.
Last year, she made a cameo in Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker, and has two films in the pipeline for this year and next: Free Guy, with Ryan Reynolds and Taika Waititi, and The Last Duel, with Matt Damon, Ben Affleck and Adam Driver.
The third season of Killing Eve, which sees Sandra Oh play an intelligence officer on the hunt for Villanelle, is set to air later this year, and has already been renewed for a fourth.
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Comer has said the new series will delve into Villanelle’s past.
“The audience love what they love about her, but it’s been nice to show a different side to that. Maybe a little bit of vulnerability.”
Comer’s full interview appears in the April issue of British Vogue.