Gillian Anderson talks dark roles and her true crime obsession

Gillian Anderson has confessed that years of comedic work in hit Netflix series Sex Education drove her into an obsession with true crime dramas and documentaries.

The 54-year-old star said she sought out darker material in her free time when her day job became lighter than it had been earlier in her career.

"I've only really got into true crime since I've been doing comedy. I've been doing comedy for the past four years or so," Anderson told Yahoo Entertainment UK while promoting new Gothic thriller The Pale Blue Eye.

The Pale Blue Eye is available to stream on Netflix UK from 6 January.

Video transcript

TOM BEASLEY: This, I think, is part of a really interesting sort of resurgence of whodunit onscreen with Knives Out and various other things, I guess is that a genre that you guys have always enjoyed and relished being a part of.

LUCY BOYNTON: Yeah, I love it. I don't love the true crime stuff as much as I do.


LUCY BOYNTON: I can't do the truth of it all. But the-- yeah, the shrouded in fiction, I love-- I love the dark material. I think it's fascinating.

GILLIAN ANDERSON: Yeah. I do like-- I've only really gotten into true crime since I've been doing comedy. So I've been doing comedy for the past four years or so. Because before that, I was only just doing serial killers and really creepy stuff and I couldn't take any more stuff. But now I am-- I'm obsessed with true crime. But anyway, we're not talking about that. We are talking about gothic thrillers.

No, it's really fun to be in this kind of world, and particularly the way that one knows that's got shoots. And if you get a sense of it on the monitor, to all to see the widescreen and the snow and the cadets, and it was just delicious to be a part of.

TOM BEASLEY: I love the idea of you finishing a day on sex education and then going to cleanse myself with some serial killers.

GILLIAN ANDERSON: It is true that no true words have been spoken absolutely, what happens.

TOM BEASLEY: I have to very briefly ask sex education question. I love the show. Why do you think it has caught people's attention so much and people love it the way that they do.

GILLIAN ANDERSON: Well, I mean, I think firstly, nobody had seen anything even remotely like it before. But also it has so much heart to it. And I think anybody on the planet can see themselves represented on screen in it or a situation that they identify with in some way. And yeah, so I think it's got a little something for everybody.