interview by JANA LETONJA

Actress Danielle Macdonald is known for her breakout role as in Fox Searchlight’s ‘Patti Cake$’, as well as the title character opposite Jennifer Aniston in ‘Dumplin’. Most recently, we’ve been able to watch her alongside Jamie Dornan in the second season of thriller series ‘The Tourist’. Next up, Danielle will star in the Australian drama series ‘The Last Anniversary’, produced by Nicole Kidman.

Most recently, we’ve been able to watch you in the second season of ‘The Tourist’. What stood out the most to you from the second season?
The second season is very different from season 1. We are in a whole new city, with new characters and completely different circumstances and relationships to explore. It was fun to get to take these characters on a whole new journey, while still keeping the tone, off beat humor and wild situations that we came to find in season 1.

How do you feel the series being moved to Netflix impacted its popularity?
I think the move to Netflix helped the series find a new audience in North and South America, which is always an amazing thing. When a series gets to find a new life, it’s exciting and unexpected, and it’s been fun to see.

How did your career in acting begin and what made you pursue it?
I fell in love with films at a young age. I can’t even pinpoint when, but I’ve never wanted to do anything else. I started taking acting classes when I was 12 years old and when I was 18, I booked my first job and moved to the US. Even during the slow times, I’ve never wavered on what I wanted because I absolutely love being on set. I love when a group of people come together to collaborate and create art. It’s exhilarating and to me there is nothing else like it.

Being originally from Australia, how did your career develop in the States?
It wasn’t an entirely conscious choice. It just happened to be where I got my start, where I booked my first jobs and then my career just kind of got based here. Being a teenager in Australia, I did realize that there was just a lot less work there and that the majority of what we watched on TV was in fact US productions, so I did have a feeling that I would most likely need to be in the US to really have a chance to audition and work.

As a creative, what excites you the most in acting?
I’m not quite sure, I just genuinely love it. The process, the collaboration, the exploration of other people, of yourself, the feeling of reading a script you can’t put down, when you get to set and try on a costume that makes you feel like the character and when you see an incredible set design and you feel like you’ve entered another world. I mean there’s just so many things, but after my first ever day on a professional set back in 2010, I knew I didn’t ever want to stop.

You’ve been in many Hollywood productions, starring alongside many top artists in the industry. Who have you learned the most from so far?
Oh, that would be impossible to say. I genuinely feel like from every job, every person I’m inspired by, I just keep learning and growing. Seeing the professionalism of people at the peak of their careers is amazing, it really makes you realize why they stay at the level that they are at. Not only are they amazing actors who can transport you into a different world when you watch them, but they’re also good people, they’re on time, they know their lines, they put in the work, they respect, value and work in tandem with the crew. That’s been one of the best things to see because so much of this job is human connection.

Which role you’ve done has made the biggest impact on your career so far?
Honestly, it probably depends on who you ask. For me though, I really feel like my career took a turn after I did ‘Patti Cake$’. It was one of the most challenging and fun roles I’ve ever done and it definitely opened doors I didn’t even know existed.

Since you’re now living in LA, what do you miss about Australia and home the most?
So many things. I miss the local things I grew up with. I miss my family, my friends out there, I miss the beaches, I miss the coffee. Also just the culture, I feel like my sense of humor is still really quite Australian.

What are some of your favorite activities when you have time off from work?
I love spending time with my friends and my animals, 2 dogs and 3 cats. I love hiking, I love boxing, going to the movies, game nights, cooking nights, all the regular stuff really. I also love traveling and exploring, and try to do as much as I can when not filming.

Next up, we’ll be seeing you in ‘The Last Anniversary’, an Australian drama series produced by Nicole Kidman. What can you share with us about it and your role in it?
What I can say is that we just finished filming in Australia and it’s a fun, mysterious family dramedy with an amazing ensemble cast and it was a blast to shoot. The series is based on the Liane Moriarty’s book of the same name and I love how her stories are so empowering with strong female characters and they just adapt to screen so well.

photography and make up TINA TURNBOW
clothing store RUE SAINT PAUL