Rose has been very busy while filming The Good Fight as a new photoshoot taken while she was living in Brooklyn has been released today by Monrowe Magazine along with an interview. Be sure to read it below and check the gorgeous pictures taken by Krisztian Eder in the gallery :
MONROWE — As Gwen Dawson—the youngest house maid at “Downton Abbey”—she secretly dreamed of escaping a life of service, and becoming a secretary (in the show’s very first season). In a memorable season six cameo, she returned to visit England’s best known stately home, as the wife of a rising politician, an eloquent feminist, and an ardent advocate for the education of women. In “Game of Thrones” she was the raven-haired wilding archer Ygritte, for whom Jon Snow broke his Night’s Watch vow of chastity—kindling an impossible passion that both characters would deny, even to themselves, until she died in his arms (toward the end of Season 4), while the wilding armies lay siege to the Wall and Castle Black, telling Snow one last time (with a broad Lancashire accent) that he “know[s] nothing.”
As for the fate and fortunes of Rose Leslie’s latest character, Maia Rindell—a recent law school graduate (from a prominent and enormously wealthy Chicago family, who’s secured a job offer at the law firm of her godmother, Diane Lockhart)—this may depend less on Leslie— or her versatile gifts as an actress, or even on the storytelling skills of Robert and Michelle King in creating an absorbing sequel to their long-running CBS hit series “The Good Wife,” and rather more on the venerable broadcast channel’s marketing bet that it can launch its new subscription streaming service “All Access” by luring the old show’s loyal audience (of 10-13 million regular viewers over seven seasons) back to the colorful political and legal world of Alicia Florrick (played by Julianna Margulies, who won three Emmys and was nominated for seven more in the role), but without Margulies’ beloved character ever actually turning up in the sequel.
MONROWE recently caught up with Rose Leslie by phone, shortly after her return home to London following some five months living and shooting the first season of “The Good Fight” in Brooklyn, New York.
Guy Lesser: So, is Julianna Margulies going to be lured into appearing in Season 2 of “The Good Fight” when you all come back to shoot next fall? Rose Leslie: I don’t believe so. I don’t believe so. No—but, as a mere actor, that’s not something I would ever be privy to. Were you wanting to see Juliana appear?
Not necessarily. But when a character like Alicia doesn’t die, with, say—
An arrow through the heart?
There’s no closure to her storyline, and of course Alicia does periodically receive mention in “The Good Fight.” True, true. But I loved the way they ended “The Good Wife” and left the door open— even if there isn’t any way that that she’s going to come through it. But it also reflects life, when, you know, you’re not too sure whether you are going to see an old friend again.
FARFETCH — You could forgive Rose Leslie for finding it rather trying to have the same 5 words incessantly yelled at her in the street – even if those 5 words are ‘You know nothing, Jon Snow’ and came as a result of her stellar 3-year stint on Game of Thrones. But it turns out that Rose is so very nice as to insist she actually likes it. ‘It’s a lovely thing to be on the receiving end of,’ she says. ‘I feel so lucky, a, to have [a catchphrase] and, b, to be a part of a show that is universally adored.’ It’s a sunny spring day, but the east London warehouse we’re shooting in is so inexplicably cold that even a person who grew up in a Scottish castle (that would be Rose) is gripped by the chill. Still, she poses gamely around the freezing space to show off SS17’s key deconstructed pieces to their best advantage.
From the big fashion hitters to the titans of television, Rose’s ascent to stardom has come via some of the modern era’s most celebrated shows: her breakout role Gwen in the first season of Downton Abbey, then Thrones’ Ygritte, Wildling warrior and doomed love of Jon Snow. Now her flawless record continues with The Good Fight, the much-anticipated The Good Wife spin-off and a newly minted hit. The series follows Christine Baranski’s Diane Lockhart as she moves to a new law firm after her plans to retire fall through (she loses all her money in a Ponzi scheme run by a close friend); Rose plays Maia, Diane’s beloved goddaughter and offspring of the Ponzi schemer. Here, she shares style advice, reminisces about Ygritte’s costumes and tells us about Maia’s ‘pretty good fight of her own’.
Everyone seems to have gone wild for The Good Fight. Do you think that’s down in part to how very current it feels, exploring subjects like fake news and even opening the pilot with Diane Lockhart watching the Trump inauguration?
Rose Leslie: ‘Yes, and I’m certainly incredibly proud of the fact that [showrunners] Robert and Michelle King decided to be bold enough to take on the administration in terms of highlighting what they feel needs to be brought to people’s attention. In the pilot, I think that with nothing being said, you can project whatever your own feelings are to Donald Trump being sworn in. Diane Lockhart’s face is so beautifully blank – you were able to project whatever your own thoughts were onto her face and be like, “Oh my god, this must be what Diane is feeling.” I thought that was very clever.’
WWD— Rose Leslie is branching out – and that’s not just because she’s just tried octopus for the first time. The 30-year-old Leslie is finally sitting down to a late lunch at Zuma in Midtown Manhattan, about to depart New York as her new show, “The Good Fight,” wraps shooting season one. It was the Scottish actress’ first time filming in the city and her verdict on it — and the octopus — is positive. Leslie, until now best known as Ygritte on “Game of Thrones” — she, of “You know nothing, Jon Snow” fame — has left the furs and battle scenes behind and is trying on corporate law for size, in “The Good Wife” spinoff “The Good Fight,” the season finale of which aired Sunday night.
“It was brilliant to be able to go off in a whole new universe, even though [the characters] are familiar,” Leslie says. “There are similarities with the previous show, but you’re exploring completely different avenues and characters and seeing this woman whom you’ve loved for so long, Christine Baranski’s Diane Lockhart, falling off her pedestal. We’re really seeing her in a kind of free-fall, and that was something that really pulled me to the project — because she’s always been such an inspirational character to watch for women.”
The spinoff, which has already been renewed for a second season, follows Lockhart as she seeks to start a new life after financial ruin at the hands of her close friends. Leslie is Maya, the only child of the friends, whose lies unravel in a Madoff-like manner. Much like “The Good Wife,” writers Robert and Michelle King focus the story lines of “The Good Fight” heavily on current politics and social issues.
“There’s something incredibly bold and brave about it, and I highly respect the Kings for putting these issues at the forefront of the writing and the episodes,” Leslie says. “We approached the issue of police brutality, and then also of fake news, and just hopefully, as a result, a trickle-down effect. I’m really assuming this is why the Kings pursue this — to help the viewers, or to enable a kind of thought process that’s like, ‘You’re right!’ Once you’re reflecting society into our show, hopefully that will then project onto the audience, who’ll be like, ‘Wait a minute, your show’s based on reality.’”
“The Good Wife,” which ended in May 2016, carried a strongly loyal fan base, much like Leslie’s previous shows “Game of Thrones” and “Downton Abbey.” “God, I’ve been so fortunate, actually,” she says. “Because [‘Thrones’ and ‘Downton’] were hits and so universally loved that I’ve only ever been on the receiving end of pure joy, when people are expressing the pleasure they derive from something like ‘Thrones’ or ‘Downton Abbey.’ You’re so energized by the story lines and by the worlds that you know that it’s real escapism for some of the fans. And, that’s an incredible, extraordinary feeling — to know you’re a part of something that gives people joy.” (source)
THE EVENING STANDARD — People are often crushed when they hear actor Rose Leslie speak for the first time. “They’re like: ‘That doesn’t sound right! You’re lying! You’re not her!’” she says with a self-deprecating chuckle. The “her” being Game of Thrones’ wildling warrior Ygritte, and the crushing sensation being disappointment that Leslie sounds nothing like her most famous character delivering her catchphrase, “You know nothing, Jon Snow”.
Even with manners as lovely as Leslie’s, disappointment is sometimes inevitable: “Say, you’re with your mates and having a nice time in a beer garden and someone asks you to do it. You’d feel a bit like a performing monkey if you put on the accent.” This is the major downside of being talented and successful — you’re for ever confronting strangers with the unwelcome reminder that TV isn’t real life. Game of Thrones fans can at least be comforted by the knowledge that the real Leslie also hails from “beyond the wall”, in rural Aberdeenshire, where she was raised in her father’s ancestral home, a castle on the outskirts of a village which, until a few years ago, wasn’t even on the map. Five years of boarding school in southern England at Millfield did it for her Scottish accent but it was a Scottish Bafta New Talent award for her role in the Edinburgh drama New Town which, in 2009, launched Leslie’s screen career.
Since then she’s played a housemaid in Downton Abbey (the contrast with her own “above stairs” upbringing was much remarked on), Idris Elba’s foil in Luther and a ruthless killer in Channel 4’s cult hit Utopia. In many ways, though, it’s her latest character in The Good Wife’s new spin-off, The Good Fight (Thursdays, 9pm, More4), that’s least likely to cause crushing moments in a pub beer garden. Maia Rindell is a natural hard-worker born into a life of privilege in Chicago. As the series opens, she’s just passed the bar and is about to embark on an illustrious legal career with the help of her well-placed godmother, Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski). Then an unforeseen misfortune turns the world against Maia and she’s forced to strike out on her own, eventually taking up a junior position at the firm where Lucca (Cush Jumbo) now works. Good Wife fans, you will not be disappointed: The Good Fight is as compelling, stylish and subtly progressive as its much-loved predecessor.
Promotion for the Good Fight is still underway and Rose was interviewed on Virgin Radio UK this morning to talk about it. You can listen to the whole thing here, but I have also cut the ads and songs from the audio and put it on Youtube, as well as transcripted some interesting bits of her interview ; enjoy !
On the song she chose to play on the radio:
– I was introduced to this track [Midnight City by M83] through my boyfriend. I was in Iceland and we had met and were working on a job together, and we connected with it. And it was such fond memories associated with that one track, I just love listening to it and get very kind of like soppy and happy. – Are you trying to tell me that this is Jon and Ygritte’s tune ?
– [laughs] This is literally Jon and Ygritte’s tune ! We hijacked it.
On filming Sticky Notes: – You’re a natural dancer ?
– Noooo. [laughs] No, they very kindly provided me with a double and when we were working on it I would practice the dance moves but there’s no way I was natural enough to pull off somebody who really had the gift. They would shoot this lovely lady in a wide shot and then they would quick cut to myself in a close-up sweaty and breathing really hard as if I’ve just done the routine. And they would like spritz a little bit of a bottle of Evian water onto my face… Very sexy.
On doing accents: – I love the idea of putting yourself into a completely different’s character shoes and surprising yourself, surprising hopefully the audiences and realizing that you can just morph into someone else and I feel the voice holds so much of a person. The Northern accent is my favorite hands down, it’s so warm and welcoming, and I love doing it. – Did you create that for Ygritte ?
– That came about through the audition process, I remember going in for the first round and being told that she had a Northern accent and then going home and practicing ferociously. I was fortunate enough to get a second round, and so by the time I went in I felt that I was confident enough to hopefully pull it off.
On what she’s attracted to in a project:
– When it comes to a project, the writing has to be brilliant in terms of keeping me engrossed but I would say first and foremost it’s got to be the character. I rather get drawn to characters who don’t necessarily conform whereby they don’t take an obvious route and their circomstances are unpredictable and you kind of see them flounder. And then hopefully there’s a happy ending whereby there’s a development of self and you see them persevere.
Exciting news ! It has been announced that Rose will be in attendance to this years’ Olivier Awards, this time as a presenter (she already went in 2016). Her friend and Good Fight co-star Cush Jumbo will also be there.
Whatsonstage – The final details, including the full line up of presenters, for this Sunday’s Olivier Awards ceremony have been released.
Presenters joining host Jason Manford this year include Ben Forster, Lin-Manuel Miranda, Mark Rylance, Andrew Garfield, Nathan Lane, John Boyega, Michaela Coel, David Baddiel, Alfie Boe, Leanne Cope, Julian Clary, Robert Fairchild, Phoebe Fox, Denise Gough, Matt Henry, Ruthie Henshall, Amanda Holden, Rufus Hound, Cush Jumbo, Rose Leslie, Maureen Lipman, Danny Mac, Audra McDonald, Laura Mvula, Paul O’Grady, Tracy-Ann Oberman, Sophie Okonedo, Charlotte Ritchie and Russell Tovey.
The presenters join the already announced line up of performances which include Gary Barlow and Tim Firth as well as the company of The Girls, Amber Riley, Tim Minchin and Matthew Bourne’s The Red Shoes. Audra McDonald will also perform as part of the In Memoriam section.
This year the ceremony takes place on 9 April at the Royal Albert Hall from 6pm, with red carpet arrivals from 4.30pm. The Olivier Awards will then be broadcast on ITV on Tuesday 11 April from 8pm to 10pm.
After wrapping up the first season of The Good Fight Rose is back home in London, and she was interviewed on BBC Radio 2 this morning to talk about the show which is currently airing in the UK on More4. You can listen to her below and check some photos taken there :
STYLIST — Rose Leslie is distracted. Outside her window in Brooklyn a passer-by has fallen over on a patch of black ice and she can’t stop giggling. Storm Stella recently hit and New York has only just re-emerged from the state of emergency called by its mayor. It’s fine to laugh, she tells me, because the passer-by has got up and walked off, but she’s now positioned herself away from the window in case any more slapstick comedy strikes.
Although she’s a big fan of comedy, the Scottish-born actress made her name playing serious-minded characters who are British to the bone. She first came to attention in 2010 as Gwen, a housemaid who betters herself and waved goodbye to Downton Abbey before the end of the first series. Next, in that other globally successful television juggernaut Game Of Thrones, she nailed the Yorkshire accent playing the fiery wildling Ygritte, Jon Snow’s enemy-turned-lover. There has also been a brief spell as a policewoman alongside Idris Elba in Luther.
Right now, Leslie is feeling a bit nostalgic for ol’ Blighty, which may explain why she’s binge-watching The Replacement and This Country on BBC iPlayer. “I am obsessed with This Country,” she confesses. “The script is so astute about who they are representing – it manages to find the delicate balance of being truthful without belittling.” It’s been five months since the 30-year-old left her London flat for America to play a role that is completely different to her previous work: a high-flying lawyer in modern day Chicago.
In The Good Fight – a new 10-episode spin-off from the eminently watchable The Good Wife, which finished last year after seven series – senior partner of the parent show’s law firm Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski) loses her life savings in a financial scam. But, in the tenacious female fashion of the original show, she sets up shop afresh with her goddaughter Maia Rindell (played by Leslie) and Lucca Quinn (played by fellow Brit Cush Jumbo) in another distinguished Chicago legal firm. Already critically acclaimed in the US, The Good Fight does not shy away from contemporary politics, covering topics such as fake news and police brutality.
Leslie admits that the opportunity to live in New York for five months while filming the show was a perk she couldn’t refuse, but Brooklyn is a long way from her family’s 15th-century castle in Aberdeenshire where she grew up with her four siblings (a stint in a Somerset boarding school put paid to her Scottish burr) before arriving in London aged 18 to study at the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art (LAMDA). Her background may be lofty but in conversation Leslie is anything but. She is naturally warm, engaging, laughs often (and hard) and has impeccable manners. Until someone falls over on a patch of ice, that is…
With the success of Downton Abbey and Game Of Thrones, it seems like you have the golden touch when it comes to choosing TV shows to work on. What attracted you to The Good Fight?
I was late to the party with The Good Wife but so many of my friends loved it. When I finally gave it a go, I thought the writing was fantastic and I was pulled in by the fact that [writers] Michelle and Robert King wrote so powerfully and beautifully for women. The characters are intelligent, passionate women who are struggling with climbing the prickly ladder to the top of the legal profession. It’s not an easy path but the story lines aren’t obvious. The script was completely engrossing.
NEW YORK POST – As the lady’s maid Gwen on “Downton Abbey,” Rose Leslie captured the spirit of an independent-minded woman, circa 1912, who saved up enough money to buy a typewriter and taught herself to type. So long, place settings and candlesticks. Hello modern world.
In 2017, Leslie fully entered the modern world in terms of her TV roles. Following her smashing success as the doomed Ygritte on HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” the Scottish actress was cast as rookie lawyer Maia Rindell on the CBS All Access series “The Good Fight,” a 10-episode, post-Julianna Margulies extension of the long-running series “The Good Wife” — already renewed for a second season.
To film the series, Leslie moved from London to Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and just like “Downton” and “Thrones,” immersed herself in a foreign world, this one marked by legalese and power suits. She didn’t have to take a crash course in the American court system. “So far, I haven’t really come across a word I haven’t been able to pronounce,” says Leslie, 30.
Maia gets a job working at a primarily African-American law firm under the tutelage of her parents’ friend, Diane Lockhart (Christine Baranski). On camera, it’s a complicated relationship. Shortly after taking Maia under her wing, Diane learns she has lost her life savings in a Ponzi scheme apparently engineered by Maia’s father (Paul Guilfoyle). Off camera, Leslie has joined the Baranski fan club. “She is the most gracious woman I’ve come across,” she says, suddenly aware of what a kiss-up she sounds like. “That’s not just me, brown-nosing.”
While Baranski receives star billing, of course, Leslie has benefitted from one of the show’s best subplots: the young idealist realizing her family may be completely corrupt.
“Through the arc of the 10 episodes, it’s interesting to see the eroding relationship with Maia’s father,” she says. “The momentum is really gathering speed around the Ponzi scheme and it’s crashing down around her.”
The series has tackled some contemporary issues such as fake news, and plays more like a cable series with features you’d never hear or see on an ordinary CBS series (including nudity and four-letter words). Maia rarely curses, but Leslie did film some nude scenes with Helene Yorke, who plays Amy, Maia’s lawyer girlfriend. “It’s a fantastic way to see the relationship between Maia and Amy,” Leslie says. “You can observe them as two loving people. It expresses how strong they are as a unit.”
With production completed, Leslie has returned to England, and to her boyfriend of four years, Kit Harington, whom she famously met on the set of “Game of Thrones” (he played Jon Snow). She seems to know she has landed the most popular (and coveted) hunk in the medium, but all she’ll say about him is “My boyfriend is a phenomenal man.”
Their romance on “GoT” offered a welcome break from the series’ trademark carnage. Fans fell in love with the pair, putting together YouTube montages of their story, like any popular soap opera couple. Ygritte’s death scene, with her memorable last line, “You know nothing, Jon Snow,” was truly moving. Which raises the question: If every woman wants to die in Jon Snow’s arms, what was it actually like to do so?
“This is me going back,” Leslie says. “It was very emotional. The love that she felt for Snow overrode any frustration she felt. It was very painful. Ygritte was happy to be dying in the arms of the man she loved. It was a very lovely storyline to be a part of.” (source)