One to watch: Rooney Mara

So if this winter’s hot list is anything to go by, your standard chick flicks are out and a very new female heroine is in.

As we swiftly approach the UK release of Todd Haynes’ Carol, everyone is familiar with the gorgeously velvety toned  and seductively sharp Cate Blanchett, but who is this fresh new face next to her. The girl with the Zooey Deschanel style gaze, charming the hearts of men and women alike?

Well as it happens, not so fresh as you may think. You might recognise this doll from the likes of The Social Network, Side Effects, The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo and most recently, Pan or she may not have hit your radar quite yet. Either way the impeccable talent of Rooney Mara, is a swifty explosive force to be reckoned with.

In Carol, Mara plays the young, naive and enchanting  Therese Belivet,Therese is an intriguing  talented  young woman, just starting out in Manhattan.  A budding photographer working in a department store.  lonely and inadvertently bi curious, Therese becomes interested in a customer, an elegant and beautiful woman in her early thirties. The lady in question, Carol Aird, casually flirts with her and gives Therese  her address to have her purchases delivered, leaving behind her gloves,  Therese takes the plunge and calls to  arrange for them to be reunited with their owner.

Carol, who is herself going through a period of re-invention due to the prospect of separation and divorce is and is lonely and board yet intrigued with the young woman innocently pursuing her and as all casual  love stories begin, the two begin to spend time together. Therese develops a strong attachment to Carol in what would be perceived by Carol’s husband as a  “schoolgirl crush” but Therese knows it is more than that; she is in love with Carol.

It’s a beautifully shot film and one which acts as a stark contrast to Mara’s previous work.  However despite the subject matter, Mara always manages to bring an air of sensitivity to her roles.  As the delectable Tiger Lilly, in Pan, the latest Peter Pan adventure, Mara brings a softer and more authoritative side to the classic Tiger Lilly doubling as Captain Hook’s accidental love interest – Lush and then her portrayal in Side Effects as wife on the verge is harrowingly crippling yet precise.

To look at her with her unique style and piercing gaze, you’d think she’d be a Cara Delevigne style Actress/Model, discovered for her looks before her craft. But Mara is surprisingly far from it.

Born Patricia Mara,  she was inspired to act by seeing musical theatre and classic movies, like Gone with the Wind (1939), Rebecca (1940), and Bringing Up Baby (1938), intrigued by  following in the footsteps of her professional actress sister, Kate Mara. Not convinced she could make it, Mara resisted pursuing acting as a child and only auditioned for one play at school, then again it was Romeo and Juliet and she did casually land the lead as Juliet… jammy. And like all good plays of the bard it was this role that landed her the acting bug, acting in a few student films while at NYU before beginning her career in acting auditioning for her first professional role at nineteen.

Gorgeous, talented and ever so modest is there nothing about this girl that’s not to like?

Well I hate to break it to you but having had the privilege of meeting her on the Carol red carpet and press conference- she dresses pretty sharp too!

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So move over ladies of Hollywood, theirs a new ever so subtle goddess in town ready to take the Crown!

Carol hits uk cinemas Friday 27th November and is every bit as delectable as it’s brunette counterpart….