GLAMOUR – Daisy Ridley enters the tiny Montreal vegan sushi joint with a singsongy “Bonjour!”—she’s learning French while in town filming an adaptation of the dystopian YA trilogy Chaos Walking. So far she’s mastered key phrases necessary for a meal. A cheerful “excusez-moi” gets a grin from the young waiter leading us to our table.
Despite an affinity for Dior and custom-made Chloé on the red carpet, Ridley, 25, is currently wearing a nondescript black tank top and saggy gray jeans. With her dark hair scraped back into a bun and a wheely suitcase in tow, she looks more like Harried Commuter No. 1 than the brightest star in the Star Wars mega­galaxy. Still, it takes only a moment for that same waiter to place her and begin clumsily futzing with the water glasses.

The parallels between the actress and her Star Wars character are almost comically—cosmically?—accurate. Like Jedi-in-training Rey, Ridley was plucked from obscurity (London, not a junkyard in Jakku) and thrust into a role of great responsibility: reenergizing one of the most beloved film series of all time while holding her own opposite veterans like Carrie Fisher, Harrison Ford, and Mark Hamill, who returns as Luke Skywalker in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

And much like Rey, Ridley is in the process of figuring out what to do and who to be in a life that changed as quickly as the Millennium Falcon jumps into hyperspace. “Yes,” she agrees with the tidy comparison, “except I don’t have talents”—she pauses to consider her words—“or rather, I’m not Force-sensitive.” Her current list of projects suggests otherwise: She recently starred in Kenneth Branagh’s adaptation of Agatha Christie’s Murder on the Orient Express, and her post-Rey arc includes everything from the lead in the film Ophelia to a voice-over in Will Gluck’s star-studded Peter Rabbit. She may not be fully Jedi-trained, but the girl has serious talent.

Prestige gigs notwithstanding, Ridley also finds herself at the delicate center of a fierce fandom. In Rey, girls and young women finally have a Star Wars heroine in a role previously reserved for men: the one destined to protect the galaxy. Rey is a light-saber-wielding Jedi who saves the day (and John Boyega’s Finn) herself. And Ridley, too, is a new kind of female celebrity, one who stands at the forefront of a multibillion-dollar franchise and feels confident enough to insist to a room full of Disney executives that Rey dolls aren’t just for girls. (More on that later.)

Of course, not all of being Rey—or famous—has come easy. Remember the wheely suitcase? She’s headed home to London for downtime that serves as an antacid to the surging stress of her Hollywood life. “I had problems with my gut last year,” she admits. “I was so stressed, my gut wall literally had holes in it.” But it wasn’t the meetings with executives, the screaming fans, or the endless photo ops that did it. “It was what everybody kept saying to me: ‘Your life is going to change. Are you ready?’” she says. “I was like, ‘How can I be ready? I don’t know what’s coming.’”

Continue Reading

USA TODAY – Daisy Ridley can’t escape her Star Wars fame, even as a mysterious murder suspect riding the opulent 1930’s train in Murder on the Orient Express.

While filming Murder (in theaters now), director Kenneth Branagh offered to let Ridley use a lightsaber in a key scene (she declined) and co-star Josh Gad peppered her with Star Wars questions offset on video, even pulling in Judi Dench for one Force interrogation.

We, too, had a few queries as Ridley gets set to ride as Rey again in Star Wars: The Last Jedi (opening Dec. 15). Here’s what we learned.

Ridley is so pro-porgs (Rey not so much).

The free world fell in love when the chubby porgs creatures made a screaming debut in The Last Jedi trailer last month. It hit Ridley, too. She lists a porgs toy as one of her prized possessions.

“It’s bringing a lot of pleasure right now,” says Ridley, calling the character “adorable” and “hilarious.”

The love affair started on set with the goofy looking puppet, operated by the same crew who handle droid BB-8. “It’s wonderful to be working around practical things on set that have such personality,” says Ridley,

But Rey won’t fall for the creature’s charms. “Rey, honestly, is too wrapped up in her own journey to pay attention to porgs,” says Ridley. “Which is a sad thing.”

Continue Reading

INQUIRER – Daisy Ridley, film’s woman du jour, walked into a meeting room at Claridge’s Hotel London in a white Self-Portrait dress and Louboutins. The English actress has stayed the same amid her success—easygoing and down-to-earth.

Daisy not only has the plum Rey role in the “Star Wars” sequel trilogy. She plays Miss Mary Debenham in “Murder on the Orient Express,” the latest adaptation of Agatha Christie’s classic whodunit aboard a lavish train. Kenneth Branagh, whom Daisy calls Ken, directs and stars as the famed Belgian detective, Hercule Poirot, with an all-star cast: Johnny Depp, Penélope Cruz, Judi Dench, Michelle Pfeiffer, Willem Dafoe and Josh Gad.

The Westminster, London native also stars in the title role, “Ophelia,” described as a take on Hamlet from Ophelia’s perspective; “Chaos Walking”; “A Woman of No Importance”; “Kolma”; and “Peter Rabbit,” where she’s one of the voice cast. With these projects, it was not a surprise to hear Daisy say that she really hasn’t been home since March.

Excerpts from our chat:

You are in a whole different wardrobe scenario from “Star Wars.” Do your costumes for this film feel more make-believe?
Putting the costume on felt like putting on a character, which was helpful because it felt like make-believe, too. So much of it is everyone’s toying with the truth anyway, if that makes sense.

And does it feel more glamorous, though?
Yeah, and elegant. I had to wear a little waspie (waist cincher or belt), which made my posture great, so I felt like a lady.

Your character is one of the most mysterious. Would you consider yourself mysterious?
No (laughter). I think I’m the most transparent, un-mysterious person ever.

Are you good at keeping secrets?
I’m seriously awful at keeping my own secrets. When it’s someone else’s, I’m fine because it’s not my secret to tell. That’s why weirdly, I don’t find it a problem with this film and with “Star Wars,” because they’re not my secrets. It’s like 2,000 people made this film. It’s fun for people not to know. It’s unusual, and this is different because a lot of people know the ending, but it’s like we know so much now.

Continue Reading

Daisy is ELLE UK’s cover girl for December in a new festive and elegant photoshoot. We’ve added the cover and high quality outtakes in our gallery. And while we wait for the scans to be added as well, you can read an excerpt of her interview below!

ELLE UK – The British actress is returning as Rey in the next instalment of Star Wars. Starring on the cover of ELLE UK, Ridley addresses filming with Harrison Ford and John Boyega, advice from Carrie Fisher, dealing with the pressure of the role, and meeting Barbara Streisand.

On How Harrison Ford Reminds Her Of Her Dad
‘They both have an earring and are f**king awesome.’

On How The Late Carrie Fisher Advised Her To Not Shrink Away From Success, But To Enjoy It
‘And that was wonderful. At work, you’re normal, you’re not the anomaly, unlike in other situations.’

On Finding Filming For The Last Jedi To Be Much More Pressure Than The first Star Wars Movie
‘I didn’t think I was good in the first film, and I was struggling with that.’

On Dealing With The Medical Condition Endometriosis
‘I was in my flat going nuts, and then my skin got really bad in the stress of it all, and I hadn’t been well – I had holes in my gut wall and stuff – and we were trying to figure out what to do with that because I’d felt poorly.’

On How Having Fewer Scenes With Co-Star John Boyega In The Second Star Wars Briefly Stressed Her Out
‘It’s not this big adventure that I’m on with John [unlike the first movie]. I was thinking I did the first one because I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into and I was having loads of fun, and suddenly I’m realising what this actually is, and I can’t f**king do this. I’m highly dramatic – so it’s all ‘oh my God’…finally I was like ‘Oh yeah, this is working.”

On Meeting Barbara Streisand And Featuring In Her 2016 Album ‘Encore’
‘I went to her house and we talked about [psychiatrist and psychoanalyst Carl] Jung because my dad loves Jung, and we were talking about dreams, and I left and got super emotional, not because she’s famous, but because she’s amazing. Part of her reputation comes from being a woman. If it was a man being ‘controlling’ about his career, people would just say he knows what he wants.’

Read the full interview in the December issue of ELLE UK, on sale 14 November.

GALLERY LINKS
Studio Photoshoots > Outtakes & Sessions > 2017 > Session 005