Actor Kate Dickie revisits her most iconic roles at Conversations at the Chip
Scottish actress Kate Dickie was the guest of honour at last night’s [Tuesday, 8 November] Conversations at the Chip – the second in a series of events hosted by Ubiquitous Chip in Glasgow.
The events, hosted by Paul Trainer of the Glasgowist, welcome leading creatives from the country to share stories and engage with a small audience.
Kate Dickie radiated enthusiasm and positivity throughout the evening as she was questioned on a range of topics from her Scottish upbringing and experiences of studying theatre at The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland to her impressive and diverse acting career.
Dickie has worked with plenty of high-calibre directors, including Ridley Scott, Robert Eggers, and Andrea Arnold, as well as some of the finest actors working today.
Throughout the light-hearted conversation, Dickie divulged what it was like to work on the sets of films including her feature debut Red Road, big-budget blockbusters like Prometheus, indie flicks such as The Witch, and TV shows including Peaky Blinders and Game of Thrones.
The audience even shared a few laughs with the star as she reminisced on her early days working on Rab C. Nesbitt, Taggart, Still Game and Tinsel Town.
“Taggart was like a rite of passage for young Scottish actors,” she laughed.
Paul guides the conversation on to Dickie’s recent films and the evolution of her roles.
“I spent the early years of my career playing sex workers and by my seventh one I phoned my agent and I said, ‘I don’t have another one in me’.
“It was all drug addicts, drunks, or sex workers, and I started to feel as though I was helping to perpetuate this myth about us [Glaswegians].
“Red Road was my first film, I was in my 30s and felt absolutely clueless, I had come from doing theatre for 12 years so to get a role like that where the lead woman wasn’t there to prop up the man or to be pretty or sexy, which was unusual back then, it was such a joy of a character.”
Dickie describes herself as having a ‘character face’ and admits it can be tricky getting Scottish accents on the screen within the industry. But this was exactly what Ridley Scott wanted when he got in touch with Dickie after being a fan of Red Road. She found herself suddenly propelled into the centre of a big-budget Hollywood film.
She said: “I had the biggest attack of imposter syndrome in my life on that set. Sometimes you can convince yourself to you shouldn’t be somewhere you are. There are some layers to it – being Scottish and working-class might play a part in that, but I’m 51 now and I’ve been doing this so long that I don’t entertain those feelings anymore.
“But stepping on that set and being with the calibre of actors I was with and Ridley [Scott], I was so overwhelmed.
“I tried to be really quiet for a month and then Michael Fassbender, the kindest soul, took me under his wing and got me into the group more.
“I ended up having such a brilliant time with them. Ridley is one of the smartest, most switched-on people I’ve met…he really knows what he’s doing.”
The actress was open and humble throughout the evening as she answered questions from the audience in the intimate setting of The Brasserie at Ubiquitous Chip. After the conversation, Dickie mingled within the tables to talk with those present.
Guests also enjoyed a drinks reception by X by Glenmorangie and an exquisite three-course supper curated by Brasserie Head Chef, Maccy.
The next Conversations at the Chip series will host special guest Paul Savage of The Delgados and Chemikal Underground. The date will be announced soon.
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