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Hayley Atwell

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Hayley Atwell

Hayley Atwell

Hayley Atwell portrayed Peggy Carter in Captain America: The First Avenger, Marvel One-Shot: Agent Carter, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Agent Carter, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man and Captain America: Civil War.

Significant roles

  • Mary Crawford in Mansfield Park (2007)
  • Ellie Harris in How About You... (2007)
  • Julia Flyte in Brideshed Revisited (2008)
  • Bess Foster in The Duchess (2008)
  • Lucy/4-15 in The Prisoner (2009)
  • Aliena in The Pillars of the Earth (2010)
  • Cinderella's Mother in Cinderella (2015)

Quotes

  • "We've got a fabulous crew and team of people working with us and I'm training at the moment six days a week to make her a bit more military and make it convincing that I could kick butt. But it's great fun and I'm really looking forward to doing it".
  • "Peggy has to look as if she’s able to outrun men while wearing heels.And she’s very tough, so I’ve been doing military circuits round Primrose Hill six times a week"
  • "I wouldn’t be allowed to do a DC Comics film for years, if ever. It’s like Coke and Pepsi." "We can’t even call it Captain America on set – we have to use a code word. [The film] looks stunning and the scale of it is hard to comprehend."
  • “I likened her character to that famous Ginger Rogers quote. She can do everything Captain America can do, but backwards and in high heels. She’s an English soldier through and through, although she always looks fabulous. She might stand there with a machine-gun shooting Nazis, but she’s obviously gone to the loo beforehand and applied a bit of lipstick. She doesn’t need to be rescued. That’s exciting to me – her strength.”
  • “We do a lot of scenes together. He’s lovely. He sat there in silence, then said [Atwell adopts Jones’ gravelly voice]: ‘D’you like opera?’ I said no, so he sat there talking to me about opera for an hour, then writing lists of books I have to read and films I have to see.”
  • “Chris Evans invited us all to the Scott Pilgrim Vs The World premiere, and that ended up being a night of drinking and party games back at Chris’s house. Stanley Tucci loves his food, so he’s very proud of taking us to good restaurants and explaining the art of Italian cooking and fine wines, and through him we met Emily Blunt and her circle of friends, because everyone in this business knows each other. But I’ve also been having 5am starts every day, so I’ve been careful about when and how often I go out so it doesn’t affect the work, because I’m not a morning person.”
  • “It’s hard to prepare because you don’t know what will happen, but I’m not scared of it. I’m open to whatever comes my way and hope I’ve got the tools to deal with it. I’ve certainly got enough people kicking me up the arse, my Glaswegian cousins for one. They say, ‘You looked rubbish on TV last night,’ or, ‘What were you thinking?’ They’re brutal. But when they like something it’s probably good.”
  • “It was beautiful. I’d never been, so I didn’t know what to expect. I’ve always found Glaswegians incredibly open and in-your-face. In London, people don’t always want to talk; Glaswegians are a lot more engaging. And it helped having family who are Glaswegian, so I felt I was immediately welcomed into the city. I want to spend more time there.”
  • “I’m ready for it,” “I’ve got six or seven months before Captain America comes out, where I can lead a normal life and prepare myself. If any changes do happen, I can go with it and enjoy the ride.”
  • "I started off with a pistol and the director could clearly tell how much I loved working with it and said 'Oh just give her a machine gun' and I was like 'yes'! So I got to play with that for a few months. There's lots of action in it and I'd love to do more of it."
  • "I think she's quite stubborn, a slightly frustrated woman who struggles with being a woman in that time. But more importantly she's a modern woman and she sees something in Captain America that she relates to, and becomes kindred spirits. He treats her very differently to how she's been treated by lots of men, in this kind of dominated world she lives in. So she's very much a fighter."
  • "Chris was a gentleman. He's, I imagine, got so much more pressure than any of us, but yet he's incredibly sincere in this part, and very charming without being goofy, and very earnest in a way. He's a very talented guy and very bright, so it was a real pleasure to work with him."
  • "It's all come from the physical training. I trained with a guy called Simon Waterstone, who's trained Bond and Jake Gyllenhaal for Prince Of Persia, and he really put me through it. More than anything, Peggy is a woman succeeding in a male dominated world, and she's slightly resentful of that. In a way she feels she has a lot to prove. All of that came from training; just getting into that mental preparation of trying to push myself harder, and making sure I was in the best physical condition that I've ever been in. And then researching the comics genre, watching all of Marvel's films, reading a few of the comic books, and just getting a sense that it's tongue-in-cheek... And yet Joe cast me because he said he wanted someone who would bring a truth to her, that I wouldn't be sending her up all the time, that I would try to explore her a woman struggleing to make her mark."
  • "It almost killed me. It really was hard work. Simon Waterstone was fantastic - he has a fantastic reputation with other leading actors, specifically men. And he wanted to really support that fact that Peggy needs to look like she is capable in this situation. She an't be too svelt or too trim or too little, because you'd blow her over, she wouldn't be able to do it."
  • "No. I do all my own stunts [laughs]! In fact when she comes on I'm like, "I'm really sorry, but you can go away?" Because otherwise it feels like a waste of all this training. All this training just to look good in a uniform seems to be a kind of pointless, really! I've thoroughly enjoyed it, esspecially the guns, the machine guns, and running up stairs and jumping out of cars and being thrown on the ground...it's been great fun.
  • Yes, I had a bullet-shell fired off near my head, when I stepped too close to Richard Armitage's gun...which was a bit dumb. And I had a mark there. And I had whiplash and a bruised rib from some other things. So yes, I've been in the wars a bit!"
  • "I'm pretty much the only woman that has a story and a journey in this film, which is great, because on set I'm pretty much the only woman, and I seek refuge in the make-up truck with all the ladies! But when it comes to the set, to walk into a room and your boss is Tommy Lee Jones, and having to speak up, and to say your truth, and be clear and confident but not aggresive is something that Peggy's going to have to tackle, especially in the army, where she's having to be physically and mentally fit. And shes able to lead troops....She kicks butt....also without being too aggresive. I think she just has a quiet power. That's what I like about her. She doesn't suffer fools and she's not a victim."
  • "There's a frisson between them where she won't five in to his charms, and you realize she likes him because of how bad he is with women, and she finds that enderring as opposed to people who are trying to charm her in other ways. She's so sick and tired of it, of that kind of attention,, that he's a breath of fresh air."
  • "Amazing. I don't think that Chris's audience or fans know just what a talent he is. He's a brilliant singer, he tapdances to prepare for his scenes - as well as doing press-ups, of course, and other manly things! - and he's an incredible mimic. And we share a love of some classic '90s films. He's always coming up with one-liners from them. He's a very, very generous guy, and I think what's wonderful is that he's bringing a vulnerability to Captain America. it's not just about being macho and two-dimensional, and I think that audiences will see a whole different side of him."
  • "I think there was more of an acceptance then of women's roles. It obviously wasn't until the feminist movement came in the 1960s and '70s that women were starting to really challenge what they were capable of doing. Peggy has this immaculate look about her. You think, "She's carring a machine gun - why's she got red lips and red nails and heels?" However, she's still a '40s woman, and I think she should be presented in that way, because it's a reflection of the time. My grandmother, I remember, would sleep in rollers and lacquer her hair and be immaculate for breakfast. We just don't do that now, and I think that's something we should respect the women of that time for."
  • She can do everything Captain America can do, but backwards and in high heels! You think, ‘She’s a soldier, why does she have these lips, nails and heels?’ But she’s still a 1940s woman. It’s a reflection of that time.”
  • “I think Joe [Johnston - director] cast me, because he wanted someone to bring a truth to her. I wouldn’t be sending her up all the time. I’d try to explore her as a woman struggling to make her mark.
  • I love firing a gun and the sense of responsibility that comes with it, you realize that holding one makes a lot of people walk away really quickly! I do all my own stunts… In fact when [the stuntwoman] comes on I’m like, ‘I’m really sorry, but can you go away, otherwise it feels like a waste, all this training just to look good in a uniform!’
  • "When I met with the director of Captain America [out July 22], I hadn't seen the script, and I had to go meet him, and we spoke for like an hour. With a lot of those big films, they'll do that instead of an audition — and I prefer them, because I love a chat. I've found the messier the meeting gets, the more successful. You vomit on someone's shirt, it's probably going to work in your favor. Because you shared something: an intimate moment of drunken behavior."
  • "When Chris Evans first took his shirt off on the set of Captain America, I just instinctively grabbed his man boob. They kept it in the film. So we did a couple of takes of me being really inappropriate with my hand on his pec for the duration of the scene."
  • "Tommy Lee Jones [who plays an American military officer in Captain America] is really scary. Because he'll take his time answering a question. It feels like he's ignored you. He does it long enough for you to feel completely humiliated. I said hello to him and then there was a long pause and then he said, "Do you like opera?" He's got a very, very dry sense of humor."
  • "Oh god, I hope so. It'd probably be cheaper to get someone who was in their 80's wouldn't it as opposed to putting me in prosthetics for six hours everyday...I'd love to. I haven't been approached yet officially, but if I was, I would absolutely run at the chance."
  • "It’s really interesting because Leander Deeny, who plays Skinny Steve, would watch the takes between Chris and I, and he would mimic Chris absolutely, down to where he would breathe in the dialogue. So it meant that when they put Chris’ face on his body, that every time the face takes a breath, the body’s also taking a breath. He was so intricate. Leander was very committed to it. He’s a well-respected theater actor and he has incredible expression in his body. It was amazing to watch it, and a bit odd at times, to do a scene and have all these emotions for someone, and then to do exactly the same thing again with someone completely different. I ended up feeling a bit promiscuous."
  • "Yeah. But the minute I met the director and he laid out what he wanted, I thought absolutely, I’m gonna do this. I don’t have any kind of judgments over it – I think that has its place and its own market and has its own kind of value. And each one can be done well. Joe was very calm, and he had a real twinkle in his eye and a kind of tongue-in-cheek sense of what this film is about. He doesn’t have a big ego, Joe; he’s very down-to-earth, and he was kind of like, “It’s a superhero film. It’s not brain surgery.” And he said it’s important that these were rooted in something real, that it was something a bit more grounded, so that they were three-dimensional as opposed to caricatures."
  • "F*cking huge! During that reveal [after he’s transformed into Captain America], I was just like, Whoa, I’ve never seen anything that big in my life.
  • Hayley Atwell: I did! I got to see it last week. I made sure before I started answering questions. I made a very strong case to Marvel about why I should see it. And they obliged."
  • "No! I just think the other actors are spread out here, there, and everywhere. They are working on various different projects. So it's hard to get reels slung around everywhere. I think they have been keeping it locked up. They don't let it out."
  • "There are some absolutely thrilling action scenes in this movie. Especially the zip wire going onto the train. That seems to be so well received. I love watching the scenes that I wasn't necessarily involved in. Because it's like, "Wow! That's what they were doing that day! That is extraordinary!" There are also so many wonderful characters in it. You have Tommy Lee Jones, and then there is Hugo Weaving. They all add such depth to what they are doing. There is a humor and wit. They add a sparkle to it. It never gets too cheesy. I think they handled it really well."
  • "No, I saw what I could. They just had different scenes shooting at different studios. I would stick around and watch what I could. There would be whole days of shooting at studios that I didn't even know existed. This was such a huge production. I remember my friends coming on set, and they gave us a tour. I would see something, and say to one of the producers, "That exists? That is incredible!" It would be a huge prop. A car, or an airplane being made in some studio somewhere. It was impossible to see everything."
  • "Oh, I know where his chin and his neck is. That part was pretty simple."
  • "He is a very intelligent, well-respected theater actor. What was amazing, physically, was watching him watch the monitors when Chris Evans would do a take. He would then mimic every single move, even the breathing. They would do certain takes, and if you could see the breath in his face, you could see the breath in his chest, at the same time. That is the kind of detail that Leander Deeny put into it. He knows he is a skinny guy. He is self aware, but I don't think he has a complex about it. He is very comfortable in his own skin. He is a performer, and he is really good at what he does."
  • "Yes. He worked incredibly hard. You can actually see him in the bar scene. When the boys get another round, the blonde barman behind the bar is actually Leander. Its fun to see him in that. You get to see the whole of him, instead of just from the neck down."
  • "I thought, "Wow! I am in such great hands." It made me feel like I wanted to give him my best. Obviously, I watched, again, all of his films before I started filming this one. There was a feeling there, like, "Oh, yeah, you really are going to make this look quite spectacular." For me, I wanted to show him that I was willing and able to do all of my own stunts. I wanted to do more than what would end up in the film, and I wanted to open myself up to any opportunity I could to really go for it. The physical aspects of it were one of the reasons why the script appealed to me so much."
  • "Possible, maybe her strength. I think she is quite equal to Steve. She certainly is not a damsel in distress. There are times when she saves him. She offers her support, and suggests ways that he could get to Bucky. Even in that final moment, being with him, they get to make that date that will obviously never happen. Because of what is about to happen in the plane. She is an important part of his life, and she is equal to him. Their relationship was genuine. There was a respect and like for one another. It wasn't just desire, because he has a hot body."
  • "All I can say is that I had such an amazing time working for Marvel and Paramount, I would love to be a part of their projects in the future. And this being an action film, the physical aspects were so attractive to me. It was my first experience with that, and I would jump at the opportunity to do it again. We'll wait and see how audiences and fans of the books feel about the movie. That might partly dictate where they go next, and what aspects they want to focus on. It was a lovely experience, and I am glad it is being received so well, so far. Hopefully it will continue."
  • "I don't know, obviously he can stand the test of time. Peggy can't. She's either long dead by now or in her eighties. I would love for them to have some kind of bitter-sweet reunion in an old people's home. He's obviously looking forward to something fabulous and she doesn't really have her own teeth any more! It would be bitter-sweet. I'm rooting for that. I'm hoping something like that happens."
  • "It was amazing, it was so big. It was a $150 million production. It was bigger than anything I've ever seen before. So walking onto set every day was almost like walking onto an adventure land, like Disney land. The set and the props were so big. Beautiful. Chris was great fun, he's very talented, a good musician, a good singer, good dancer - really annoying!"
  • "I can’t say yet [if I'll appear in Captain America: The Winter Soldier] because it hasn’t been officially released, and Marvel are very protective of their franchise."
  • "You might see Peggy in some other context ... I’m not playing Sharon Carter. But Peggy’s exclusion was inevitable because, obviously, Steve Rogers wakes up in the first one and it’s modern day. Peggy would be very very old or dead. So, it wasn’t really a surprise to me."
  • "They're so tight, the Marvel family, and private. I can say that I am involved in some way in the second one. Just know that it's not me being cryptic, it's Marvel. They can just as easily kill me off if I threaten to tell the story before it's time. They're keeping it all under wraps."
  • "There's been an online campaign for Peggy to be featured. People really liked her. So Marvel have made sure that as part of ComicCon there will be a little kind of snapshot as to what Peggy's actually really capable of, which was finished here and which was great fun. Hopefully, it will lead to other things."
  • "I'd revisit Peggy again. She's pretty uptight. I'd like to, if I get a spin-off, definitely add a bit of humour in there. She's very British. Very uptight. Let's hope if she gets a spin-off it's modern day, so she can relax a little bit, let go of the uniform."
  • "I’ve been working with some stunt coordinators – I get three separate fight scenes. The training has been really tough because not only are you learning the moves, you’re also learning the power of the punch so it doesn’t look like you have spaghetti arms. On my first day, they said: “It’s going really well but you don’t have to add your own sound effects…” "
  • "I’m going to Comic Con in July. I’ve never been before, so I said to the film’s producer: “What is it, like 3,000 people?” He said: “No, try 300,000 people.” They get quite obsessive. When we were filming the first one, Chris Evans went over to do a: “Hi, I’m the next Captain America, nice to meet you” thing and two fans who were dressed up ended up fighting over his seat. One of them stabbed the other with a really sharp pencil."
  • "Fans of the first film really wanted to find out what happened to Peggy afterwards, so Marvel are also making a short film, which is basically ‘What Peggy Did Next’, which will be shown at Comic-Con and be on the DVD extras of the second film. So as well as doing a bit in the new film, I’ve got a whole new spin-off short film. It has been great to be back in training with the stunt coordinators, kicking some butt again."
  • "Is Robert Redford in it? Really? Well, there you go, that shows how much I know! But now you have told me, and because I love him, I am going to call up the Marvel family, find out when he is filming, then I’ll go down to the set to stalk him. That is my privilege! Thanks for the tip."
  • "I went over earlier this year to Pittsburgh to film, so all the stuff is new footage."
  • "I read about that too. The one-shot was so successful, the fanbase were like, 'We want more of Peggy!'. I think Marvel probably take that very seriously, and it's certainly something I would be a part of doing. I'd be interested to show different sides of Peggy. I think she could be a great role model and a great member of the Marvel Universe. I love the Marvel lot, they're really great people to work with, so it would be nice to go back and work with them again. I'd definitely do it."
  • "We went out drinking one night and he was like, 'You know, it would be great to write something for you'. And I was like , 'Yes, Joss, it would! It would be amazing!' "
  • "He sets in motion one mission which we think is going in one direction -- that's what's very exciting. Just when you think you know what this season is about and the direction it's going to go in, it goes somewhere else. This is not a formulaic show whereby we solve a case a week. It has a very strong arc. It has its climaxes, and it details what she goes through."
  • "It stands alone. It's very different from Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. and the Peggy that you see in our series is very different from the cameo performances that I've had in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.. It's really its own piece, but yet, obviously, because it's Marvel, it's interlinked with lots of the different worlds -- Captain America and Ant-Man."
  • "It takes a completely different turn. It's exciting the direction it takes. It's really clever the way the writers stayed on top of everything. Just when the audience goes, 'Alright, I know what the show is,' it goes into a different direction."
  • "There's one fight scene that happens in a couple of episodes from now and has a very upbeat 1940s song over it, which is fantastic. What people don't know is that actually during the fight sequence I had Nicki Minaj's Anaconda in my head throughout the whole fight. When I hear the new soundtrack I go, "Oh that's not what I had in my head, but it still fits.""
  • "If there was a Black Widow film I'd love to be part of that. I think that a lot more females on screen together is a very powerful dynamic. I think that would be great fun to see her up against other women."
  • "I would like one of two things -- I'd really like to explore her background of where she's come from, what her family was like, what created this exceptionally strong and unique woman. And who it was in her life that told her she could be just as good -- or better -- as the guys. Secondly, I'd like to go a few years in the future, to see how she tackles being a mother and a wife, as well as being kick-ass in the office."
  • "I'd like to see her vulnerability. I think sometimes we can depict woman as strong like it's a new thing -- we've always been strong, that's ridiculous. But I'd like to see her vulnerability. No matter how hard life gets, we can only be strong for so long, before we grab the ice cream and cry into the television. I'd like to see that."
  • "That would be great [to have Winter Soldier appear in in the series. The exciting thing is, we can have so many crossovers with different worlds in the Marvel Universe."
  • "She crosses over, but it's more of a cameo. It's not a flashback -- well, it is, but not to the point where it's 1946."
  • "We're going to LA for season 2. I kind of keep thinking L.A. Confidential in my head when I think about season 2 - there's a very dark glamor to it. And there'll be lots of beautiful shots of the rolling Hollywood hills and palm trees and maybe Peggy sitting in a convertible, with a head scarf, looking fabulous. I love playing her. I know her so well, you're not creating a character from scratch anymore, she's established, so we can have more fun with the show."
  • "I love them. I insisted that I do all my own stunts. I have two stunt coordinators who trained me up - it's like a dance. It all feels fluid, you have to get the right movements and make sure there's enough distance between you and the stunt men so you don't hurt them - which I've done many time. It's a blast. You get to channel any tension or aggression you've got."
  • "I’ve not started work on season 2 yet, but it’s been written, she revealed. I do know that, one thing they have decided, is that it’s going to be set a year later. So it’s 1947, it’s going to be set in L.A., and I keep on thinking about L.A. Confidential, that kind of film noir, which would be great."
  • "I'm really satisfied with where it ends and what happens to Peggy. I'm proud of this season, so if we get the opportunity to work on it again, then brilliant. Because then I'm sure I'll have even more fun working on it than I did in season two which was a lot. I don't quite know how to top that. But I'd love the opportunity to try. ... The writers have very elegantly put together this ending. I definitely want more."
  • "Well, first of all she'd be turning over in her grave. She'd be like 'no.' And she'd inject herself with the blue serum and become a super villain. She'd break out of her coffin and ground her. She'd ground her. Then she'd kick Steve's ass as well. I just feel that, you know - I wouldn't want to date my great aunt's guy. It just feels like it crosses an incestuous boundary. And Peggy just died. That's even more disrespectful, right? It's like, 'Don't touch that. You can't tap that!' She'd want the best for her niece and she'd want her dating a good guy. And now with this whole 'Hail Hydra' business, I don't know if Steve's good enough for her. So on all levels, it's just a big fat no."
  • "There was talk of Season 3 of going further back into her past. So the showrunners were talking about a possible kind of twist, I suppose, into something to do with the family. They suggested there would be more to do with my brother. So that's all I can say."
  • "I love Peggy. I love the people that were working on this project together. The fans are incredibly warm and welcoming. And it would be an absolute privilege and honor to bring her back for the fans. I'd shoot on the weekends. Blue serum. Whatever it takes."
  • "I think they would have figured something out in terms of making a special or waiting until we finish this season and then me doing something else with another network perhaps. All I’m saying with that is it’s still a much-loved show for the people involved in the making of it and we know that the fans, it has a special place in their hearts. That’s something that I would be very happy to go back to if the opportunity came."
  • "I’d love there to be. I hound Louis D’Esposito on a regular basis saying, ‘Give me a movie.’ The great thing about Peggy is we know from The Winter Soldier that she lives a long life, so she can come back. I’m banking on when I’m in my 50s, let’s see what Peggy’s up to in this decade."
  • "I don’t feel like I’ve said goodbye to her because she does still seem to live on a lot for a lot of the fans. Marvel is still such a big part of my career and I suppose my professional family that I would absolutely not rule out the idea of going back to Peggy at some point or seeing her in other avenues. I love her and I hope that she has a life elsewhere another time."

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