SCREEN RANT – One of the X-factors of Star Wars: The Force Awakens is Daisy Ridley, the 23-year-old British actress who plays the lead role of Rey. With just a handful of UK TV credits to her name and one previous film, Ridley was almost a complete unknown when she won the part – much in the same way that Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher were when they landed their roles in A New Hope nearly 40 years ago.

But Ridley is unknown no more. Although we don’t know much about Rey yet except that she is a scavenger who gets caught up in the great conflict between the Resistance and the First Order (and that her last name has been intentionally withheld), she has been front and center of the marketing and trailers for The Force Awakens since the very first teaser was released in late 2014. Since she is also signed to star in Episodes VIII and IX, it’s clear that Rey will play a central role in these new chapters of the Star Wars saga. Is Ridley ready to become an icon? Let’s find out…

Can you remember your reaction when you got this part?
Daisy Ridley: My reaction probably lasted about two years (laughs). No, I’m just kidding. It’s probably still going on. My initial one was like (makes gasping sound) and then there was insecurity and fear and terror and elation. It was a real amalgamation of things.

How did you keep that all in check when got to the set, coming from what you were doing before and stepping into this gigantic production?
I kind of didn’t. I was like a bit of (makes shock noise) at the beginning, as people have noted – thank you, Carrie and Peter – but being surrounded by people who make you feel like you are worthy and like you should be there and like you have a story to tell and like you have a voice, that is the most amazing thing. That (fear) kind of drops away when you’re surrounded by people, when you’re all working together to make this incredible thing, and it didn’t feel like a big thing. It felt like there was a small group of us making this incredible thing, so it didn’t feel daunting in that way. Everyone definitely made me feel relaxed and loved and supported.

Continue Reading

Here’s a new interview with Daisy for her latest film, the highly-anticipated ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’.

CHICAGO TRIBUNE – Daisy Ridley may not be as brave as her character in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” but she’s close.

In her first-ever film role, the 23-year-old British-born actress plays Rey, a pilot and scavenger at the center of the action in the hugely anticipated “Episode VII.”

The hardest thing about the job, Ridley said, was overcoming her own fears.

“It’s one thing for other people to see potential in you and it’s quite another for you to understand that and see it in yourself,” she said. “So of course everyone else being wonderful helps, but there’s a certain level of growth and stuff you have to do as a person… It’s just like life times a million.”

Right now, that life is a sniffley one that includes lots of airplanes and interviews. The film’s nonstop promotional schedule has left Ridley with a cold that has her wrapped in a winter coat on a recent warm Southern California day. But even illness doesn’t weaken her resolve when it comes to keeping the film’s hotly guarded secrets.

Though co-star Harrison Ford has said Rey wields a lightsaber in the film, Ridley deflected the question when asked directly.

“Finn and Kylo have a fight with a lightsaber,” is all she would say, referring to co-stars John Boyega and Adam Driver, whose tussle has already been shown in the film’s trailers.

The actress did undergo months of physical training to prepare for her role, a regimen that included weightlifting, climbing and “staff training” — footage shows Rey running and fighting with a staff. How much different could a lightsaber be?

“I had to look like I could look after myself in the desert and drag and scavenging things across sand,” she said.

Continue Reading