Holliday Grainger's had quite a career in such a short space of time.
Although she began her career as a child actor, she quickly graduated from televisions to feature roles, starring in Jane Eyre, Bel Ami, Joe Wright's adaptation of Anna Karenina and Kenneth Branagh's lush reimagining of Cinderella. Her latest film, The Finest Hours, sees Grainger as the fiance of Chris Pine's character. Whilst he's off struggling against the elements and battling to survive, Grainger's character is left on the shore to wait for his return.
We started off and asked how she dealt with that, considering she was removed from the action of the film.
"I spoke to Craig (Gillespie, the director) about the role and he knew the importance of her being a fully-rounded character, otherwise what's the point in keep on flicking back to the shore if you're not even attempting to follow her story? You didn't want to her to be this whiny character, pining for boys, so we worked on her never being too emotional or what emotions were going on her head, we never let a tear drop in the end. It makes her a bit stronger, it'll hopefully make the audience want to follow it through her eyes because it is a guy's story but the audience get to know the community through her."
Being that detached from the action, Holliday felt like she "was on a girl's movie because so many of my scenes were with Rachel (Brosnahan). They'd be shooting for two months and I just flew in from another job and it felt like the entire crew was staring at me like I was an alien or something. 'Oh my God, it's a girl...' and I'm walking in with my red nails and '50s dresses."
Despite her many period piece roles, Holliday is refreshingly honest about how and why she's starred in so many of them. "I love a corset!," she laughs, with just a hint of sarcasm. "Every makeup artist I worked would always say, 'Oh, you've got a great face for period dramas' and I would love to do them! And lo and behold, be careful what you wish for. I don't think I've been out of a corset for six years. I'm reading scripts for potentially the next year and I'm thinking, can I fill my next year with more period pieces?"
Is it the sort of thing that hangs like an albatross? Do you wish for a sci-fi film? "I don't think I'd mind it if it wasn't for people like you who kept reminding me!", she bites back with a good-natured cackle. "I'm joking, but people like you and my manager keep on me about it. But I love it, actually. You can either do stuff that's just contemporary or you can do 1950's America or 1920's England or 1500's Italy and there's such a different mindset in each performance which is fun, I do enjoy that. I'd love to do some sci-fi, but y'know..."
As to what's up next, it's another period piece where she'll be starring in an adaptation of Daphne DuMaurier's My Cousin Rachel.