This young English actress may not have been in the industry long, but she’s already left such an impression that we’re taking a look at her top five roles. And, of course, it’s also because she’s the star of your M-Net Sunday night movie, Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again.
Downton Abbey (2012 – 2015)
James’s big break came as rambunctious cousin Rose in this wildly popular upstairs-downstairs drama. Entering the show in its third season, she instantly lightened the mood and dispelled some of the tension – especially considering the season’s earlier traumatic events. Thanks in great part to James’s luminescent performance, the character became a welcome regular.
Her Downton days certainly got James noticed and soon after the show ended she landed the title role in Disney’s live-action rendition of the classic fairytale. Her performance helped elevate the princess, creating a character who was far more than just a cinder-sweeping, dithering damsel.
Pride and Prejudice and Zombies (2016)
The following year James took on another literary character in this delightfully undead take on Jane Austen’s classic novel. And not just any character but the leading lady herself, Elizabeth Bennet. James relishes the role, having fun with it whether she’s fobbing off suitors or fighting off zombies.
Baby Driver (2017)
James went all American for her role in Edgar Wright’s hard-driving heist film. The killer soundtrack and getaway cars are great supporting characters, but it’s James as sweet, sultry waitress Debora who almost steals the show.
Darkest Hour (2017)
Gary Oldman won an Oscar for his immersive performance as Winston Churchill in this World War II drama. The young James more than holds her own against the acting legend as she takes on the role of Churchill’s secretary Elizabeth Layton. And she’s never more endearing than when she teaches him how to do a proper peace sign.
Feature image: Lily James in Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again (2018)