One to watch: Mare of Easttown’s Angourie Rice

In this series, PORTER catches up with the name to know this month. First, it’s Australian actor ANGOURIE RICE, who talks to OLIVE WAKEFIELD about lockdown hobbies, having her hair shaved for her latest role, and the Taylor Swift anthem she wishes she’d written

April’s One To Watch is actor Angourie Rice

Outshining two Hollywood heavyweights on the big screen is no easy feat, but that’s just what Angourie Rice, 20, did in her breakout role in 2016’s The Nice Guys alongside Ryan Gosling and Russell Crowe. Since then, she has been hand-picked by Sofia Coppola for The Beguiled, co-starred with Miley Cyrus in Black Mirror, launched her own podcast, The Community Library, and campaigned with Greenpeace to help combat the devastating 2020 bushfires in Australia. Now, Rice is going prime time in HBO’s gripping new thriller Mare of Easttown, in which she plays Kate Winslet’s on-screen daughter.

Hi Angourie, where are you speaking to us from today?

“From my place in Melbourne, where I have been in lockdown with my family.”

What are five things we would find in your handbag?

“These days, it would be a face mask, hand sanitizer, tissues, a hand mirror for touch-ups and a book. At the moment, I’m reading Wuthering Heights.”

What time of day do you feel most creative?

“Unfortunately, because of my sleep cycle, it’s the middle of the night – when it is quiet and feels forbidden. I stay awake until 2am and write down ideas for my podcast episodes. Or I paint.”

What was the last WhatsApp message you sent?

“‘Fantastic!’ – to my publicists, about a photo shoot I did.”

Who would play you in the movie of your life?

“I hope the movie of my life comes later, when I have lived a very exciting life. But, if it were to be made now, my sister, who wants to become a stunt double.”

It would be amazing to have some say in what gets made, whether that is through producing or writing. I’ve always loved storytelling

Where would we find you at 2am and 10am on a Saturday?

“At 2am, ideally I would be in a bar with my friends. However, it would be the very end of the night. I don’t go into the extreme early hours! At 10am, on a good day, I would be out for a run or at the gym. But, let’s be honest, I’d probably be in bed.”

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received?

“I struggle with reconciling all the different versions of myself – which I describe as being like Hannah Montana. A psychologist told me to think of myself as a prism, reflecting all the different colors of the light but still existing as a whole.”

What is something we might find surprising to discover about you?

“I’m a knitter. I got into it during lockdown and have knitted socks for all my friends and family.”

What other elements of your industry excite you?

“As an actor, you have very little control; the story is given to you. It would be amazing to have some say in what gets made, whether that is through producing or writing. I’ve always loved storytelling.”

Rice plays Kate Winslet’s on-screen daughter in new HBO crime thriller Mare of Easttown, for which she had her head shaved at her own suggestion
Next thing I knew, it was the costume run-through and I was having my hair shaved off

Where has been your favorite location to work?

“We shot The Beguiled in New Orleans, but I was 15 at the time and couldn’t go into the cool jazz clubs. When I turn 21 in January 2022, I would love to go back and experience it properly.”

Tell us something that no one knows about Mare of Easttown

“Originally, in the script, my character’s hair was long and auburn. When I was offered the role, I suggested a short, blonde Kristen Stewart-style haircut. Next thing I knew, it was the costume run-through and I was having my hair shaved off.”

If you could be anywhere in the world right now, where would you be?

“It’s cheesy, but right here, where my family is.”

Who is on your wish list of people to work with?

“I would love to work with Sofia [Coppola] again, Greta Gerwig and Lulu Wang. I recently saw Promising Young Woman, which was fantastic – so I would also love to work with Emerald Fennell.”

What is a song you wish you’d written?

“There is a song on Taylor Swift’s album, Folklore, called Betty, which I love. It’s such an epic story. You could turn it into a movie.”

Where will you be this time next month?

Mare of Easttown will have just come out – so I’ll be sitting on my couch with my family and friends, watching it!”

And, lastly, what is one thing you’d love to achieve in the next 10 years?

“I don’t like to set goals in case I don’t achieve them and feel disappointed, but I’ve set myself the challenge of doing three chin-ups and getting a dog.”

Mare of Easttown premieres on April 18 on HBO Max in the US and on April 19 on Sky Atlantic/Now TV in the UK

The 20-year-old Australian actor has also starred in The Beguiled, The Nice Guys and the Spider-Man franchise reboot with Tom Holland