Dakota Blue Richards (‘Skins’) interview

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Skins returns to E4 for a fifth series in January, following a brand new set of Bristol teenagers, including Dakota Blue Richards as Francesca ‘Franky’ Fitzgerald.

Franky is an androgynous oddity who arrives in town, hoping to blend into the background and make a new start. She’s an outsider who draws attention without trying; basically, the sort of girl Mini hates. But Franky isn’t going to let Mini stand in the way of what she really wants; friends, love, stability and a place in the world.

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Tell us about your character?

“Franky is the outsider, she arrives three weeks late, and looks very different to all the other characters. She is such a lovely person who keeps trying to bring people together and is quite selfless. She is quite androgynous, and is very creative and does a lot with music. Franky has moved around a lot in her past, it is hinted at but we’re not quite sure what it is that has happened to her.


What do you enjoy about playing Franky?

“Franky is so kind, unconditionally, to everyone. Even when people are mean to her she continues to be nice to everyone. She can’t really be beaten.”


Can you see some similarities between you and your character?

“I’m quite creative like she is. I like making things and I do Art at school. I like building things much like Franky. I’d like to say I’m as kind, sweet and lovely as she is but don’t think I’m quite as lovely as she is! She’s the kind of person I would aspire to be like but I don’t think I’m quite there yet. Aesthetically however I don’t think there are many similarities between us. I am much more feminine than she is and I am much more comfortable in myself.”


If you could play someone else in the cast who would it be and why?

“I would quite like to play Grace, partly because she always looks amazing and get the cutest costumes. I also think there is a lot of depth to her character, which is there but quite subtly hinted at. She is a very happy person, and in the same sense as Franky she likes to bring people together and make sure everything is ok. I think each member of the cast is their character and I can’t imagine anyone else playing them. It’s odd because I auditioned for Liv originally but I only became Franky right at the very end of the audition process.”


Tell us something about you…

“I do art. I’m not very good at it but I enjoy it. I’m quite into modern art and abstract stuff. I like making things. I really like a photographer called Christian Coigny. I think he’s great. I like the works Tracey Emin and Damien Hirst too. The stuff that he makes you just want to look at! Movies, Cruel Intentions, Priscilla Queen Of The Desert, The Orphanage, and French film called Innocence. I really like the Studio Ghibli films, I think they’re really cool. Music, I like everything to an extent. I really like Crystal Castles, The Temper Trap, Lady GaGa and Iron & Wine!”


Skins returns at 10pm on Thursday 27th January 2011 on E4.