Jessica Plummer reveals how she turned a nightmare audition into a starring role

Virgin Radio

20 Dec 2021, 16:41

Pic: Getty

It's the stuff anxiety dreams are made of.

Talented actor Jessica Plummer joined the Graham Norton show with Waitrose to talk about how an audition that she thought went badly wrong turned into a fantastic role.

She's starring in the new psychological thriller on BBC One, called 'The Girl Before'.

The audition was done in the middle of lockdown, so was via Zoom.

"Oh, my goodness, Zoom, it's just so awkward, isn't it?" she exclaimed.

"I remember, in my audition, everything that could possibly go wrong, went wrong. The doorbell rang. My connection went" she laughed.

"My daughter fell off the trampoline and started crying! I remember halfway through the scene thinking 'should I ignore it? Should I stop? I can hear her crying but I'm not sure it's a desperate cry? Maybe I can continue?' Literally everything that could go wrong went wrong."

The former EastEnders star added: "Somehow made it through."

Jessica explains about her role: "I play Emma Matthews, who moves into this house, with her partner, Simon, played by Ben Hardy. However, not all is as it seems.

"Basically the show features two timelines three years apart, and we skip between the two."

She added: "It's a psychological thriller, like a who did it, it leaves people on the edge of their seats."

Graham joked: "It's a weird show, because your co-star is essentially a house. You are acting with a house!"

"Oh, 100% The house is the main character," said Jessica.

There is another character in the show, Jane, played by Gugu Mbatha-Raw, and there's a deliberate uncanny resemblance between the two.

Jessica recalled: "I remember when I googled and put our faces together the first time. I was like, 'Yeah, I've got this. We've got the same jaw line' Do you know what though, when my daughter watched the trailer, she didn't know which one I was!

"She kept getting confused. My own child. I know, right?"

After her nightmare audition, it was a hilarious moment when she found she had the role.

"I got the phone call from my agent, and I was in the bathroom. If I'm completely honest, I was on the toilet," she confessed.

"My agent called me - it was 9pm - to say that I had got the role and yeah, I screamed, and I jumped around!"

"Even now I pinch myself. I don't think it will really settle in until it's out and the world has seen it. Then I think maybe it will start to feel real."

The Girl Before is out now on BBC iPlayer.

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