English actress Natalie Dormer is best known for playing beguiling femme fatales as astute as they are alluring—currently as Margaery Tyrell on Game of Thrones, formerly as Irene Adler on Elementary and Anne Boleyn on The Tudors, as well as “The Blonde” who seduces Brad Pitt in The Counselor. “I love those women that I play that have sexual power,” Dormer told The Daily Beast in an interview published today. “But I’m trying to step away from it for me, and for my artistic growth. It’s also more who I am. I’m not that woman.”
And step away from it she did: For her latest role as The Hunger Games: Mockingjay–Part 1, out in theaters Friday, Dormer shifted gears to play Cressida, a filmmaker creating anti-Capitol, pro-Katniss propaganda for the rebel faction—a character baring more resemblance to Skrillex than a sexpot. She chatted with The Daily Beast about playing Cressida, as well as the status of feminism in Hollywood, and, most crucially, the troubling inequity between male and female nudity on Game of Thrones.
“During the first season Alfie [Allen, who plays Theon Greyjoy] Richard [Madden, who plays Robb Stark], and several of the men got naked—although not all the way,” Dormer recalled when asked about the nudity ratios on the HBO series. “I suppose it’s just the rules of broadcast television, isn’t it? I think Thrones has been better than your average show with the equality, but they could definitely ramp it up! Absolutely.”
She also voiced her appreciation for the refreshingly un-patriarchal universe of The Hunger Games and Interstellar. “What I love about Mockingjay–Part 1 is that President Coin or Cressida could have easily been played by a man,” Dormer said, “and if you look at Interstellar, the Anne Hathaway or Jessica Chastain roles would have been men years ago. I’m glad that cinema is catching up to what television has known for a while: that three-dimensional, complex women get an audience engaged as much as the men.”