The Fresh Meat Cast: Charlotte Ritchie far left alongside Joe Thomas, Kimberley Nixon, Jack Whitehall, Zawe Ashton and Greg McHugh (Channel 4)
Charlotte Ritchie returned to light up our screens last night as wannabe hipster, Oregon, for the third series of the award winning Channel 4 comedy show, Fresh Meat. The show, all about a range of somewhat dysfunctional students living together in a house which takes ‘shabby chic’ to a whole other level has been a hit with audiences and critics alike.
Alongside Zawe Ashton’s incarnation as Vod, Charlotte has been heralded as one of the show’s break out stars bouncing off Jack Whitehall’s preppy toff and Kimberley Nixon’s slight neurotic dentistry student, Josie. Her story lines haven’t proven easy either, with her bedding of her university lecturer being the most prominent. All of this is pretty darn impressive to say playing Oregon was Charlotte’s first major acting role straight out of university.
Charlotte is a girl with many strings to her bow, once upon a time she was one fourth of classical girl group, All Angels, plays the piano and alongside acting she has just started a folk two piece with her brother, Luke Ritchie and their debut song, Hammerite is due out soon. Plus if that wasn’t enough, if you tuned into the first episode of Fresh Meat’s season three she also speak fluent Spanish. Talk about being an all-rounder, its making us feel somewhat inadequate! However meeting Charlotte, she is the kind of girl you just want to hang out with and as self-deprecating as they come- think Zooey Deschanel, but a sassier British version.
Charlotte's Look Book (from left): VICTORIA Victoria Beckham, Osman, Emilio de la Morena and Tibi (Fiona Garden and Getty)
Her looks on the red carpet and TV appearances have also been grabbing our attention, looking just as relaxed in a short printed Tibi lobster print dress as she is in a floor length gown. It’s a welcome change up on the red carpet and we can’t help but lust after the new French vibe she is working in this series as well. We caught up with the up-and-coming actress to talk laughs on set, whether she could live with her character in real life and her red carpet look…
GRAZIA: Is it hard getting into the 'acting zone' when you have so many comedians on set?
CHARLOTTE: It can be, because you laugh a lot, and we film at such a fast pace you have very little time to compose yourself. But talking and joking with the cast and crew is really what keeps you going and keeps your energy up, so you just learn to get 'in the zone' (ie. serious) quicker each time.
GRAZIA: Funniest story from set?
CHARLOTTE: It's sort of funny, but mainly actually distressing. We were filming during a heat wave, so at one point the studio got so hot we couldn't finish a take because we all had beads of sweat dripping down our noses and couldn't get to the end of the scene without ruining continuity. Funnier now, not so much then. Also when I said "Lighthouse family" in the middle of a sentence because I was a bit delirious.
GRAZIA: Could you live with Oregon in real life?
CHARLOTTE: No. I genuinely think she would drive me mad. She's very anxious. But I do admire her motivation and keenness, so maybe that would be useful when I needed to get out of bed and fill a day when I was unemployed... And I'd also borrow some of her clothes and all of her make up.
Charlotte in Kenzo, Alberta Ferretti and McQ (Fiona Garden and Getty)
GRAZIA: What piece of advice would you give Oregon?
CHARLOTTE: I would say calm down a bit, gal. Give yourself a break for crying out loud. (Said wisely, as though I'm super relaxed myself.)
GRAZIA: Oregon has gone through a hair-volution- was it difficult living with it in real life?
CHARLOTTE: Sometimes it is difficult. The most recent look (short black bob) was quite high maintenance with straightening and serums etc., but looks great for the character. The hardest was series 1 & 2 where I had to take out my extensions every day and accept that I had short hair in real life.
GRAZIA: What would you steal from Oregon's wardrobe?
CHARLOTTE: The red beret in Series 3 and the spiky 'Culietta' headband at the end of series 2 and the glittery Doc Martins from Series 1.
GRAZIA: What can we expect from Oregon this series?
CHARLOTTE: She really comes into her own in this series and sort of defines herself away from relationships in general, and tries to become a writer and activist. It's really nice to play her a bit more confident too. And there is a radical change in image - a sort of military/french vibe.
With co-star, Kimberley Nixon (Fiona Garden)
GRAZIA: Favourite look from your red carpet catalogue?
CHARLOTTE: I really loved the red lobster Tibi dress from My Wardrobe with the white platforms from Office, when I went to the screening of Stoker. The shape of the dress was so easy to wear, and the shoes were comfy and made me tall and imposing (probably). It's also nice to try different looks, and have a go at different things rather than stick to a specific style I think. We'll see...
GRAZIA: How is it recording with your brother- does it result in sibling bickering?
CHARLOTTE: Yes. The others in the band we play with often remark on how Luke (my brother) becomes really immature when he's around me. I feel this is a positive thing. I like to think I have the same effect on my sister. I keep them young, sure.
GRAZIA: If you could swop places and play another character in TV now who would it be?
CHARLOTTE: Any character in Horrible Histories please. I love that programme and all the actors are brilliant. You get all different costumes to wear and sketches to do. Any possibly learn something about history? Yes please.
Check out the video for Charlotte and Luke Ritchie's debut single, Hammerite below: