In her relatively young career Bel Powley has accomplished a lot. Starting with her breakthrough film role in 2015’s Diary Of A Teenage Girl for which she won several awards, and continuing with significant roles in such films as White Boy Rick, Royal Night Out, and King Of Staten Island opposite Pete Davidson, she also made her mark in television with the key part of Birdy in 2022’s Everything I Know About Love and as Claire Conway in The Morning Show. Now perhaps she has her most important role to date in the new Limited Series A Small Light from National Geographic that will premiere on Monday and will be able to be seen during this Emmy season not only on Disney + and Hulu, but also Lifetime and more outlets.
She plays Miep Gies, an ordinary woman thrust into extraordinary circumstances when she is urged by her boss, Otto Frank to help hide him and his family from being discovered by the Nazis during WWII. She did this from 1942 to 1944 when unfortunately they were finally found and shipped off to concentration camps. They all died with the exception of Otto, and Gies continued to be key to what we now know as the Diary of Anne Frank as after the war she was the one who found it and kept it for Otto who would go on to live with her and husband Jan for another seven years.
In this week’s edition of my Deadline video series, The Actor’s Side, Powley talks about this remarkable story and the opportunity to play Gies whose story has been mostly under the radar until now, and it not only is about the pulse pounding efforts to keep this Jewish family hidden in Amsterdam, but also a coming of age story of this then-young woman and her new marriage. Powley talks about the relevance of it for today with rising anti-semitism prevalent, and also the research, filming in front of the actual Frank house, and why this limited series could make a difference. We also talk about her thriving career and so much more. To watch our conversation and hear the ‘actor’s side’ from Bel Powley just click the link above.
Join me every week during Emmy season for another episode of The Actor’s Side.