Olivia Cooke: I googled ‘worst Irish accents in film’ before latest movie

Olivia Cooke has admitted she googled “worst Irish accents in film” as she prepared for her latest movie role.

The Vanity Fair actress, who is from Oldham, stars opposite Bohemian Rhapsody actor Ben Hardy and Peaky Blinders’ Daryl McCormack to play the title role in the Irish gangster comedy Pixie, about a young woman who wants to avenge her mother’s death by masterminding a heist, but finds herself on the run.

She told the PA news agency: “I did the same as Ben, googled ‘worst Irish accents in film’ and was like ‘Oh god’, because they are not generous at all and nor would I be if someone was trying to do an Oldham accent and just butchered it, I would be really critical.

“So we put a lot of pressure on ourselves, maybe a bit too much pressure because we were having panic every single day and then going to Daryl, being like ‘Can you just say this line for me one more time?’

“But I think it’s fine, my friend Niall, who is Irish, said it’s fine and I’m ok with fine.”

Hardy, who is from Dorset, said: “I was definitely worried about it, definitely didn’t want to let the nation down.

“It was definitely daunting but we had Nick Trumble (the dialect coach) who was very helpful and Daryl was really helpful as well so hopefully we are not on the list of worst Irish accents of all time, hopefully we avoided that.”

Cooke said she hopes the film offers “a bit of escapism” in difficult times, adding: “It’s a fun, action-packed film and the themes aren’t that heavy-hitting, and I think it’s a really fun watch, and if people can get to the cinema and if they feel comfortable doing that, then that would be great.

“But also I think it’s just a good film to watch in whatever capacity and take your mind away from what’s going on for two hours.”

The film features a cameo from Alec Baldwin as a gangster priest, and McCormack said: “It was crazy – one day we just came to set and Alec Baldwin is wearing the priest thing with the little white collar and holding a gun and you’re like ‘What is going on?’

“But I think we were all anticipating him coming because obviously he’s done such amazing work and he’s Alec Baldwin so I was definitely excited to see him on set and just learn from him and the likes of Colm (Meaney), but it was definitely a little bit surreal but a lot of fun.”

– Pixie is out now in UK cinemas.