Olivia Colman, The Night Manager, AMC, series, Angela Burr

Meet the actress behind Angela Burr.

The Night Manager, an epic new thriller bound to keep you captivated, premieres at 20:00 on Monday 22 February on AMC (140). 


Hugh Laurie gave us some insight into his experience, now see what Olivia Colman has to say about her experience as government spy Angela Burr. 


Could you tell us a bit about your character in The Night Manager?

Angela Burr is written as northern and I thought that it was very important to keep that – there was something special about this renegade woman who was a different gender from the public school and establishment men who surround her. I always thought of her as a zebra among the lions, but a zebra that wasn’t scared or intimidated by that and that’s what freaks the lions out.


Could tell us a bit about where we find Burr at the beginning of the series?

Although she is part of this sort of boys’ club and world of espionage by working for the government, she hasn’t got many friends because she is resolutely honest and that has really annoyed some of her slightly dodgier comrades. She has been ousted a bit, and when we meet her, she’s working in this pretty dingy damp office, desperately trying to get funds to do what she thinks is right. I love that she never seems to compromise and won’t be bullied. She doesn’t agree with how some other people play it but she is great and very strong.

Credit: Des Willie
Burr (Olivia Colman) © 2015 The Night Manager Limited.  All Rights Reserved.


How was it working with Tom Hiddleston and Hugh Laurie? What did they bring to their respective roles?

It was such a treat working with Tom and Hugh! Hugh has a gravitas playing this despicable baddie who is equally so charming and suave. The whole piece is about class and power, and he’s got a sort of chip on his shoulder. At some point it’s mentioned that Roper was first generation Eton and normally that’s mocked by the old boys, but he has so much power, so much money, and he’s so ruthless that he holds the highest card. Hugh plays all of that so beautifully. Tom Hiddleston is fantastic as Pine too – he is so multifaceted and his character is quite Bond-like. He’s similar to Burr in that he has integrity and a sense of right and wrong from his days in the Army. His character has seen awful things and is very clear on what’s right and where he wants to go. I think that’s what they (Burr and he) have in common.


What was the most enjoyable part of this project to work on?

It was a very companionable job; we were all working on something we felt very passionate about. Everyone was so nice and we all got on so well. We were together for a long time and in various different countries, which was amazing. I’ve never travelled so much for a job – we filmed in Mallorca, Morocco and London. 


Tune in to The Night Manager at 20:00 on Monday 22 February on AMC (140).