Belfast Telegraph

Hayley Atwell: How I prepare for Peggy

Hayley Atwell's posture is improved by her Peggy Carter costumes.

The 32-year-old actress began her portrayal of comic book character Peggy Carter in 2011's Captain America: The First Avenger and continues her role in TV series Agent Carter. Set in 1940s America, Hayley sports an array of outfits worn in the era to give the show an authentic feel.

"It helps with my posture and my physicality and it makes me get ready for the day," she told rottentomatoes.com. "Wearing such beautiful clothes, that have been so beautifully handmade and fitted to my exact specifications, and having two hours of hair and make-up, gives me a respect for the crafts of make-up artists and wardrobe department - and also kind of gets Peggy ready for the action."

While she may look the part in her costumes, they're not the most practical when it comes to Peggy's fight scenes. Luckily Hayley has found a way around the limits by making sure her combat style fits the feel of her alter ego.

"More importantly, it's not the restrictions of her clothes, but it was more that she doesn't have any superpowers," Hayley explained. "So her punches can be a bit messy, it can be a bit dirty; they're not as slick as, say, someone like Black Widow or Captain America, who make it look very elegant. Peggy gets in there and gets into a bit of a scramble and a scrap."

It's not just the fashion of the time Hayley's a fan of. She is also a big fan of the music and admires classic icons like Bette Davis and Katharine Hepburn from the golden age of Hollywood.

"I find it so glamorous, but also these women had great chutzpah and integrity and dignity. So it's great to be a kind of a step-part of that time," Hayley added.

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