In a new interview with the LA Confidential, Natalie Dormer talks her fans, getting into acting, her high-profile projects including The Hunger Games and Game of Thrones, and more. A new photoshoot also accompanies the feature.
Madness might be justifiable. At 33, Dormer somehow finds herself in two of the biggest pop culture sensations of our time. Hunger Games and Game of Thrones attract so much frenzied analysis and commentary that they are international events. Game of Thrones, which this year received a whopping 24 Emmy nominations, will once again simulcast across more than 170 countries when it returns next year, and the three Hunger Games films alone have grossed over a billion dollars worldwide. Dormer, who frst appeared in Mockingjay Part 1, was the number-one choice to play Cressida, the propaganda film director whose scalp ripples with vine tattoos. “Natalie had to shave part of her head for the role, and she wore the look with absolute fierceness,” says Hunger Games producer Nina Jacobson. “She gives you everything as an actor, and yet, on screen, you still can’t quite pinpoint what she’s thinking. The more you watch her, the more you want to know. I suspect it’s why audiences are so drawn to her.”
One casualty has been Dormer’s anonymity. “Recognition can be a many-times-a-day occurrence,” she says, kicking back on a pool chaise. She’s wearing black stretch pants and a gray t-shirt under a black jacket glittering with zippers. “I get oil paintings from fans, computer-generated art from fans, fans approaching me in the toilet, fans approaching me in the sauna. It’s a Champagne problem, but I can’t really go anywhere without a, ‘Wait. Aren’t you…?’”
Dormer grew up in Reading, England, where a thriving Hollywood career seemed about as probable as an invite for a play date with Prince William. “I didn’t know any actors and had no idea how to get into the profession, so I kept really quiet about it,” she says. Dormer’s father worked as a computer programmer and her mother was a housewife, but it was her grandmother who inspired Dormer, the eldest of three, to perform. “She would take me to see Shakespeare’s tragedies in the ruins of the Reading Abbey, knocked down by Henry VIII and Cromwell, and my eyes totally opened up to the possibilities.”
Read the full feature and watch a behind-the-scenes video from the photoshoot at LA Confidential.