The story of Bonnie Parker & Clyde Barrow—part Robin Hood, part Romeo & Juliet, part Brad & Angelina—and their famed crime spree through the Great Depression south is not a new one. However A&E's upcoming series featuring the outlaw duo is a fresh take on this true, tragic, and wildly violent love-story.
In case you don't know their tale: In 1930s Texas, booze was prohibited, the country was broke, and the government was an easy target to hate. When Bonnie & Clyde began robbing banks, the public took a liking to the sexy, young couple who were defying the law. The two met a horrific end after two years on the road when they were gunned down in their getaway car, but their legacy remained alive going from newspaper headlines to the silver screen when Hollywood royalty, Warren Beatty, and Faye Dunaway assumed the roles in the 1967 biopic.
Bonnie Parker herself, aka English actress Holliday Grainger, sat down with Marie Claire to dish on becoming this gun-wielding star couple with Emile Hirsch.
Marie Claire: Take us back to when you got the call that you landed the part, what was your firstthought?
Holliday Grainger: When I first got the call I actually burst into tears. I think it's because she's such an American icon and I've never done an American role before. And I've never gotten a part off of an audition tape before.
MC: Wait, you got the part off of an audition tape?
HG: Yes, I mean you tape yourself on so many auditions and you send them off into the ether and you never hear back. And then I got this call that I got the part. I was absolutely shocked. And then that turned into slight terror.
MC: Wow, that is something! Did you start preparing right away? I mean after the shock and terror wore off of course.
HG: By the end of that day I had already called up an American accent coach and then I started going to ballet lessons and researching panic attacks and I bought so many biographies about Bonnie & Clyde. And then started watching all the old movies and listening to the songs that Bonnie talked about in her diary. I went sort of full force into Bonnie & Clyde land.
MC: That's awesome, you went all in. So let's talk about your partner in crime, how was it working with the magnetic Emile Hirsch [Into the Wild, Lords of Dogtown]?
HG: Amazing. We got sort of thrown in with each other because we were staying just outside of Baton Rouge where there's basically a movie set and that's it. And for the first week or so it was just me and Emile. I think within a few hours of knowing each other we'd seen two movies back to back. We were like what shall we do? Should we rehearse? Should we go through lines? There was lots of down time to go through lines because there was not much else to do…[laughing].
MC: Haha that's great! Well it paid off, this version of the story definitely zeroes in on the sexual draw between you two aka Bonnie & Clyde.
HG: I guess because there's more time with a series. You see not just the love in their relationship but also you really get a sense of them as a couple with their lots of little coupletiffs; shouting at each other and then the makeup love as well.
Don't miss Holliday Grainger and the star-studded cast of Bonnie & Clyde in the miniseries two-night event across three networks–History, Lifetime and A&E–on December 8