Olivia Colman had 'no idea' Wicked Little Letters was based on a true story

Olivia Colman had "no idea" 'Wicked Little Letters' was based on a true story.

The 50-year-old actress stars as Edith Swan in the drama film that follows the residents of a small town as they start receiving poison pen letters from an anonymous sender and was shocked to learn that the events depicted on screen had actually happened in real life.

She told Collider: "I had no idea about the real story. When I was reading Jonny [Sweet]’s script, on the script, he had a black and white picture of Edith Swan and Rose Gooding, and I thought, “Wow, is this real?” And then, I Googled it and went, 'Oh, my God, this genuinely happened.' It was debated in Parliament, and it was covered by all the broadsheet newspapers of the time. The whole country was gripped by what was happening in the court case, week by week."

The 'Wonka' star - who appears alongside Jessie Buckley and Timothy Spall in 'Wicked Little Letters' - added that it seemed like a "great time" to tell such a story in the modern day because of how relevant it is to today's world as she noted that the idea of "trolling" has just gone onto a bigger scale since the onset of social media.

She added: "And it did become apparent that this would be a great time to do this. We think in the 1920s, it was all so civilized and lovely, but there was extraordinary oppression of women, which in many countries is as bad as it was back in the ‘20s, or sometimes worse. We’re doing better in our countries, but still, it’s not perfect. Trolling is not brand new. It’s just gone on to a whole other level, on a much bigger scale. So, it felt like a good time to do it.