Published: 00:01, 04 July 2016
When Ellie Kendrick finished university she was unsure if she could make a career out of acting – until she scooped a role in fantasy drama Game of Thrones.
As she debated whether to continue with stage and television roles or embark on a different career, her agent announced she had an audition for the Sky Atlantic smash hit.
Several auditions later, with filming for series three about to start, she was cast as Meera Reed, a skilled hunter tasked with looking after a young disabled boy.
The 26-year-old said: “Meera is one of the few women in Game of Thrones who wears trousers and hasn’t got naked, so I’ve been lucky so far.
“She is handy with a bow and arrow, so I had to have lessons. You learn lots of unusual skills as an actor – I can also skin a rabbit and milk a cow.
“The cast are lovely and it’s amazing to be part of something so big.
“It’s fun keeping big story lines secret, but it’s a relief when something finally comes out and I can talk about it.”
Ellie moved to Boughton Monchelsea from London, aged seven, and went to Sutton Valence Primary School, North Street, and Dulwich Preparatory School in Cranbrook, before starting at Benenden School, where her love of drama began.
She said: “I played all the boys’ parts, which I loved. In my first term I played the Artful Dodger in Oliver!. That’s when I developed a love for playing parts that are really different to me.”
After school, she went on to study English literature at the University of Cambridge.
Ellie, now back in London, joined Hazlitt Youth Theatre in Maidstone, National Youth Theatre and Kent’s Changeling Theatre.
She played small parts in shows including BBC crime drama Waking the Dead and medical soap Doctors until she got her big break at 17, playing Anne Frank in a mini-series.
Ellie, who visits Kent regularly, has three films coming out this year – comedy Whisky Galore, with Eddie Izzard; British drama The Levelling; and modern-day Romeo and Juliet, Love is Thicker than Water.