What is something that is socially accepted or tolerated that you wish wasn’t?
Passive aggressive tutting. I went to New York recently and it doesn’t exist there. People just tell you if you’re annoying them.
If you could only invest all of your personal aesthetic into one room in your flat which room would you pick? How would you make it your own?
My flat is open plan, which makes this easier – the main room where I cook, eat, work, exercise, watch tv, nap, entertain, watch the world go by etc. I’d keep a big open space in the middle and surround it with plants. I also love all things tropical at the moment and have my eyes on a beautiful palm tree lamp from Rocket St George. It would make the winter evenings feel brighter.
If you had to score an entire film to one album, which album would you use?
Graceland by Paul Simon. The film would be a two-hour single shot of me squished in the back of the car with my siblings on holiday, hot and happy.
What is something from your past that you wish you had appreciated more at the time?
My Grandma. I did really appreciate her at the time but I wish I’d found out more about her younger self. I recently discovered she once rode a motorbike in the circus with a lion in the sidecar.
Would you rather finish eating something that tastes incredible after it has fallen on the ground or after finding a hair in it?
From the ground! Absolutely no question! Unless it’s my own hair? I’m pretty sure I eat that a lot without realising.
If you suddenly had a split personality but could pick one fictional character to be your other psyche, who would you pick?
Baloo from The Jungle Book. I’d love to be able to relax like that.
Reading your bio, it is interesting to see that you’ve done the reverse Schwarzenegger and gone from politics to acting. If an intelligent & talented career actor and an intelligent & talented career politician both had to tell the truth all of the time in interviews and public appearances, who would be more successful in their field?
To quote Glenda Jackson.
“If you look at the greatest dramatists, what they’re trying to do is tell the truth about what we as human beings are like. The best politics is trying to find that truth too.”
However, whether actors would get employed again and politicians voted in again if they always told the truth about everything is another matter. I’m not even sure people would want to hear it.
What is the most bizarre conversation you’ve ever eavesdropped in on?
I recently heard my four year old nephew tell someone that I was eight. It was very flattering but I worry that he has unreasonable expectations of what he should achieve in the next four years.
What is a subject you wish you knew more about but know you will never have the time to learn as much as you would like to?
The workings of the human brain. Specifically my own. It makes life a lot more relaxing to be able to understand why we might think in a certain way and other people think utterly differently.
You just completed work on The Hippopotamus, the synopsis of which explains it as “Disgraced poet Ted Wallace is summoned to his friend’s country manor to investigate a series of unexplained miracles.” If you could investigate one miracle or unexplainable happening, which would you pick?
The rise and rise of Donald Trump. An unexplained happening. Certainly not a miracle.
If you could only communicate over distance with others via text, email, video-call, or phone conversation, which would you pick?
It would have to be a phone call. I’m not great at them but my inability to convey tone in message/ email can make them a dangerous medium. I was once told that my friends thought my texts were ‘cold’. I had thought they were just succinct!
Want more? Watch our behind-the-scenes film.
Emily Berrington returns in season 2 of Humans, on Channel 4 from October 30 (UK). She can also be seen in Dead Funny at the Vaudeville Theatre, London from November 3.
As told to Paul Vaughan for TPJ
Creative Director & Photographer: Jessie Craig
Stylist: Harriet Byczok
Hair: Alex Price
Makeup: Justine Jenkins using Green People Natural & Organic Skincare