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International Star You Should Know: British Actress Jodie Comer

U.K. actress Jodie Comer scored her breakout role in 2013, in the British coming-of-age comedy-drama “My Mad Fat Diary,” portraying the frenemy to the emotionally troubled diarist. She saw her star rise even higher playing the mistress on the BBC’s limited series “Doctor Foster” in 2015, and landed the starring role in “Thirteen,” about an escaped hostage — the first drama to bow on online-only BBC Three. The show earned strong reviews after its Feb. 28 digital launch, and debuted on BBC Two on March 6.

EARLY MUSE: Comer, who will be 23 on March 11, cites Diane Keaton’s performance in “Annie Hall” as her inspiration, but says the thought of making a career in acting didn’t hit her until she befriended other aspiring thespians on radio. “Up until that point, (acting) was just something I enjoyed,” she allows. “I had no idea that there could be a possibility of me doing it all the time.”

CULT FACTOR: The critically acclaimed “My Mad Fat Diary” made people more aware of Comer’s work. “It got a huge cult following,” says Comer. The people who loved
it really stood by it, and were touched and affected by it.”

ON EDGE: In “Thirteen,” Comer stars as Ivy Moxam, a woman who escapes from a cellar after being held captive for 13 years. To prepare for the role, the actress engaged in movement exercises and researched kidnapping cases to understand the effects isolation would have on her character. “It was quite mentally and physically challenging,” she says. “It really pushed me to my limits. You learn a lot about yourself when you do these kinds of roles.”

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