The Essex-born star (and Emmy nominee) sat down in a restaurant in the Hampshire countryside, close to work at Highclere Castle, to discuss her rise to fame since Downton Abbey became a stateside favorite.
On being cast opposite Dan Stevens (who plays Cousin Matthew): “Until then [Downton] I’d played much more vulnerable parts, but I remember coming out of the audition, and Dan Stevens was in the waiting room. I said, ‘Who are you up for?’ and he said, ‘Matthew.’ I walked out and thought, Oh, that could work.”
What would Lady Mary Crawley be like these days? “She’d be in charge, her own boss. She’d have married very well and maybe had kids, but I don’t think she’d be particularly maternal. She’d definitely have help,” Dockery said with a laugh.
And her style? “Armani. Simple, clean.”
Dockery’s last tan: “In 2006! I had to be darker-skinned for a part and really went to town.” S
How she stays so lithe: By consuming “small bits of fish,” and working out at a gym in London’s Shoreditch. However, “Once you’re in costume, you can’t really exercise in a corset.”