Sofia Oxenham is quickly rising through the ranks as one to watch. Propelled into her career by the prestigious drama school RADA in 2017, Oxenham has been on the up and up since then. As a lead in the last season of the period drama Poldark, a regular in the Netflix show Cursed, and starring in the Amazon show Soulmates – the young actress has already been around the block.
A far cry from her seaside Cornish roots, the young actress is set to star in the much-anticipated Disney+ show Extraordinary – which is a feat of supernatural powers, and chuckle-inducing antics. Oxenham is set to play the co-lead Carrie, who harbours the powers of summoning the dead. This doesn’t help her inherently introverted nature, as the dead overshadow her a lot of the time. Her best friend, Jen, is seen as the hero – and Carrie is the trusty aide.
Set to release super soon, January 25th, Oxenham is gearing up for a new wave of fans. Luckily for us, we got the chance to sit down with the rising star and talk to her all things acting. From her Cornish roots, and the heavyweight talent at RADA, to preparing for her role in Extraordinary – we covered it all.
Head below for the interview…
Hi Sofia! How are you?
Hey Wonderland I am really well thank you…Hope you are too!
Can you talk us through how you got your start in acting?
My very first taste was in a school Christmas play called Whoopsy Daisy Angel. I was five and only got the role at the last minute when the original angel got stage fright! Then after watching my older brother in school plays and thinking how much fun it looked, I decided to do the same and joined a local drama club. I think it was about that time I figured this was something I really wanted to pursue.
Congratulations on your up and coming role on Disney Plus’ ‘Extraordinary’! Would you deem this role your big break?
Thank you so much. Who knows? I feel like big breaks are something of a myth and you never really know if it was your big break until years later. All I know is that I had an absolute blast making this show, and it was such a joy from start to finish. I feel so lucky to have worked with such an incredible team and inhabit the world in which Emma Moran created.
Who was the first person you told when you found out you would be playing the role of ‘Carrie’?
I remember I had had the last audition on a Thursday and then we were told we probably wouldn’t find out until Monday morning – which was agony… I was out with some friends about to go see a concert in Ally Pally when my agent rang. I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone until the Monday, so I had to (try) and keep my lips sealed but I did phone my mum and tell her. She had helped me with the very first self-tape for it months previously and had also loved the script!
Are there any parts of you that resonate with your new character?
I really resonate with Carrie actually, in the way that she is still trying to find her voice and be an adult. Also her relationship with Jen is so beautiful and nuanced, and I have similar relationships in my own life.
How would you describe the show in one sentence?
Extraordinary is a comedy drama about a world where everyone has superpowers apart from Jen.
What has been your favourite moment during the process of filming?
It’s so hard to pick a favourite moment ‘cause there has been so many! But what immediately springs to mind is a time we were doing exercises to strengthen our bonds pre-filming. We were working with our director Toby and two incredible acting coaches on various tasks to try and achieve this. Mairead (Jen) and I are playing best friends, and Bilal (Kash) and I are playing a couple who have been going out for years – so it was really important to have that special chemistry. The task I recall which still makes me laugh is one where we had to make a poster for a missing cat and ask shop owners in East London (where we filmed) to put it up in their shops. It was only afterwards when asked by the art department if I had put my real number on the post office (which I had) – I realised just how seriously we had taken the task.
Do you ever miss your Cornish roots?
Yes all the time! I spend as much time there as possible, as that is the place where I feel the most like myself. I spent a lot of time there during Covid and this really allowed me to reconnect with it as an adult and appreciate its incredible beauty. Like a lot of people, I find being close to the sea is very calming and restorative.
Did you find studying at RADA with a like minded cohort inspiring or competitive?
Being at RADA was incredibly hard work, but the other students represented such a variety of talent that it felt inspiring rather than competitive.
Have you worked with any actors or actresses who you idealised growing up?
When I was auditioning to get in, I used Juliette Stevenson’s monologue from Truly, Madly Deeply as one of my speeches. I had always loved the film but also Juliette Stevenson was one of my heroines when I was growing up. Then, in my final year at RADA, a few of us got the chance to play Handmaidens in Robert Ickes production of Mary Stuart at the Almeida Theatre. Juliet Stevenson and Lia Williams were Mary Stuart and Elizabeth. That was pretty much a pinch me moment. I was really star-struck and could hardly talk to Juliette but she was so lovely and warm.
What genre of tv show or film would you like to act in next? Or do you think you’ll stick to comedy?
Hmm.. I absolutely love comedy but I also want to try everything. I’d be really up for doing something heavy and dark like Happy Valley next.
And finally, what’s in the works now? Any new projects beyond ‘Extraordinary’?
There are some exciting things in the pipeline, but sadly nothing I can talk about just yet!