from Indielondon.Co.Uk, April 2006 / by Rob Carnevale
THE green, green grass of England seems to be a fertile ground for talented young actresses at the moment, what with the likes of Kate Winslet, Rachel Weisz, Sienna Miller and Keira Knightley attracting some of the top Hollywood roles of the moment.
Following hot on their heels is Sophia Myles, star of epic blockbuster Tristan & Isolde and Terry Zwigoff’s forthcoming indie flick, Art School Confidential, who seems to have every chance of emulating their success.
Critics have generally been raving about Sophia’s performance in Kevin Reynolds’ historical epic, produced by Ridley and Tony Scott, even though the film itself has received lukewarm reviews.
While word of mouth is strong surrounding Art School Confidential and she is currently shooting in Scotland with David Mackenzie on Hallam Foe, alongside Jamie (Billy Elliot) Bell.
Given the buzz surrounding her, it may come as a surprise to find that acting was only something Sophia came to late on in her educational life.
The daughter of a vicar from Isleworth, Sophia was a brilliant academic who was accepted at Cambridge University to study Philosophy after getting straight As at A-level.
It was only after being discovered by writer-director Julian Fellowes (Gosford Park/Separate Lies) in a school play that she began to consider an alternative.
“I still can’t believe it,” she recalls during an interview to promote Tristan and Isolde. “I did drama as a subject at school when I was 16 only because I really fancied the guy that did the drama school.
“We put on a play as part of the exam and Julian Fellowes came along with a director who was doing an adaptation of The Prince & The Pauper with him and they cast me in that.
“It sounds cliched but the moment I walked onto the set I thought: “Yes, this is it!” It was such a joy to be there in the first place I would have almost paid to do it myself. But then I knew this was what I was meant to be doing.”
Not bad for a self-confessed “swatty, boffin-type”