Olivia Cooke Central STAFF   October 10, 2020

Olivia Cooke: ‘Colm Meaney does everything with a wink and it’s so delicious’

The Manchester actor on making the leap to Hollywood, and starring in new Irish-set film Pixie

Lockdown has been a strange time for everyone, including Olivia Cooke. At 26, the star of ITV’s Vanity Fair and Steven Spielberg’s Ready Player One hasn’t had a fallow month in some eight years. Not working has been quite an adjustment.

“I haven’t worked in a year,” says the British actor. “I’m going a bit mad. I have a weird PTSD reaction to the sound Netflix makes when it turns on. During lockdown I got so lonely I went on Instagram for the first time. I like seeing what Bernie is saying but I’m done with it now. There’s something about my algorithm. It keeps showing me toenails with fungus and teeth-whitening treatments. Why do you keep showing this to me?”

Even if she isn’t travelling and shooting, Cooke has plenty of projects to promote. Last year she played a pregnant homeless woman giving her baby up for adoption in John Carney’s romantic comedy series Modern Love. Sound of Metal, a drama starring Riz Ahmed as a drummer losing his hearing and Cooke as his singing girlfriend, will premiere on Amazon Prime this December.

Before that there’s Pixie, a kinetic, post-Tarantino crime caper from Barnaby Thompson, the producer of Wayne’s World and director of the St Trinian’s movies.

Pixie (Cooke in the title role) is a young Northern Irish woman out to avenge her mother’s death. But when her scheme hits a snag, she finds herself on the run – and part of a romantic threesome – with two young men (Ben Hardy and Daryl McCormack). Along the way, they encounter Pixie’s crime boss, amateur chef dad (Colm Meaney), a sarcastic drug dealer (Dylan Moran), and a gang of mobster priests led by Alec Baldwin.

“It was so much fun,” says Cooke. “It was a bit debauched, actually. This is my first straight-up comedy that I’ve done. I had heard that those are the most stressful kinds of films to make because you’re constantly worried about whether it’s funny. But luckily the mad tone of the film carried off and on the screen.”

She was impressed by co-star Meaney, who, she says, “does everything with a wink and it’s so delicious”, and was even more impressed by her surroundings. Made with support from Northern Ireland Screen, Pixie was shot around Belfast with additional photography in the west of Ireland.

“We went on a bit of a road trip around Sligo,” says Cooke. “I felt this a lot during lockdown, that in Britain and Ireland we’re really lucky to have such gorgeous landscapes. The Republic of Ireland is so stunning. It’s so lush you feel like you’re in New Zealand sometimes.”

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Olivia Cooke Central STAFF   October 03, 2020

6 HQ stills from PIXIE have been added to the gallery.

Olivia Cooke Central STAFF   September 24, 2020

During a series of adrenaline-fueled one-night gigs, itinerant punk-metal drummer Ruben (Riz Ahmed) begins to experience intermittent hearing loss. When a specialist tells him his condition will rapidly worsen, he thinks his music career — and with it his life — is over. His bandmate and girlfriend Lou (Olivia Cooke) checks the recovering heroin addict into a secluded sober house for the deaf in hopes it will prevent a relapse and help him learn to adapt to his new situation. But after being welcomed into a community that accepts him just as he is, Ruben has to choose between his equilibrium and the drive to reclaim the life he once knew. Utilizing startling, innovative sound design techniques, director Darius Marder takes audiences inside Ruben’s experience to vividly recreate his journey into a rarely examined world.

This trailer purposefully includes captions (just like the film itself) so that hearing and non-hearing audiences can experience Ruben’s journey.

Sound of Metal arrives in select theaters November 20, and on Prime Video December 4 in the U.S.

Olivia Cooke Central STAFF   September 24, 2020

VARIETYIFC Films has nabbed Chad Hartigan’s “Little Fish,” a love story set in a post-pandemic world that will have an eerie resonance when viewed in light of the coronavirus crisis.

The deal is for North American rights. IFC, which has remained active during COVID-19, releasing films such as “The Nest” and “The Trip to Greece,” will debut the picture on Feb. 5, 2021. “Little Fish” stars Olivia Cooke (“Ready Player One”), Jack O’Connell (“Unbroken”), Raúl Castillo (HBO’s “Looking”), and French singer-songwriter Soko. “Little Fish” boasts a screenplay by Mattson Tomlin based on a short story by Aja Gabel.

According to the official log line, “Little Fish” unfolds in a world where a pandemic has broken out. The disease causes its victims to lose their memories. Newlyweds Emma (Cooke) and Jude (O’Connell) have to grapple with this painful new reality. After Jude contracts the disease, the young couple struggles to hold onto the memory of their romance.

“Chad Hartigan’s prescient and deeply felt love story blew us away on every level,” said Arianna Bocco, EVP of acquisitions and productions at IFC Films. “The stellar performances and gorgeous cinematography complement Chad’s unique and beautiful vision. This is the love story for this moment – bring tissues.”

Hartigan is best known for directing “This is Martin Bonner,” which won Best of NEXT Audience Award as well as the John Cassavetes Award at the Film independent Spirit Awards. He also directed “Morris From America,” which won the Waldo Salt Screenwriting Award. “Little Fish” was expected to debut at this year’s Tribeca Film Festival. However, the annual film gathering was upended due to the coronavirus outbreak.

In a statement, Hartigan said he was happy to land at an indie distributor like IFC, citing the company’s penchant for backing unconventional films.

“’From ‘Me and You and Everyone We Know’ to ‘Hunger,’ IFC has released countless films that have inspired and shaped me over the years and as the challenges of 2020 have proven again, they remain one of the most adept and adaptable distribution companies in the business,” he said. “I can think of no better partner to bring this pandemic love story to audiences.”

The deal for the film was negotiated by Bocco for IFC with CAA Media Finance representing the filmmakers. Sony Pictures’ Stage 6 Films has rights to the film outside of the U.S.

Olivia Cooke Central STAFF   September 24, 2020

1 scan from Total Film (October 2020) has been added to the gallery