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Dakota Fanning, Andrew Scott Rave Over Playing Frenemies in ‘Ripley’

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Dakota Fanning and Andrew Scott may play frenemies in their new show, but it’s nothing but love between the two movie stars.

Talking with ET’s Denny Directo from the premiere of their Netflix series, Ripley, the Uptown Girls actress, 30, and Fleabag star, 47, offered equal praise for each other. The show — a new iteration of The Talented Mr. Ripley novel — sees Scott as the titular character and Fanning as Marjorie “Marge” Sherwood. 

The pair said that despite their characters being at odds throughout the eight-episode limited series, they could not have picked better scene partners for the project. 

“Well, we are so lucky that we are friends in real life and got along so well,” Fanning told ET. “I think we have a very similar way of working and I just couldn’t have asked for a better person to get to work with. And he’s very unlike his character, thank goodness.”

She added, “He’s just such a brilliant actor. There’s nothing he can’t do. Yeah, it was a real pleasure.”

Andrew Scott and Dakota Fanning attend the 'Ripley' premiere in Los Angeles on April 3, 2024 – Getty Images

Scott — who got his big break in the BBC Sherlock series starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman — echoed Fanning’s doting comments, saying that even with an err of hostility between their characters, they still had the most fun two actors could have together. 

“Dakota is one of the most fun people you could possibly encounter,” the actor said. “We had a great time having slightly icy, thin smile scenes with each other.”

The 1955 novel by Patricia Highsmith follows Scott’s character, a New York City grifter hired by the father of Dickie Greenleaf (Johnny Flynn) to bring his son home to the United States and enlist him in the family business. Things take a dark turn when Ripley finds himself enjoying the lifestyle a little too much and decides he will not let anything get in the way of his newfound happiness and freedom. 

For the new version, the show’s creators opted to give the classic story — which has been told numerous times before including in a 1999 film starring Matt Damon, Jude Law and Gwyneth Paltrow — a darker and more sinister spin that will leave the audience in suspense. The series is also set in the 1960s and is in black and white, giving it a film noir quality.

Watch the trailer for Ripley, which premieres on Netflix on April 4, in the player below: 

During her interview with ET from the Ripley premiere, Fanning also commented on the upcoming anniversary of her film with Denzel Washington, Man on Fire, which celebrates 20 years since its release on April 21. The actress said that she is honored to have been part of the project and to have lasting relationships with her co-stars from that movie to this day. 

“I’m lucky to know all of the Washington family and his youngest daughter (Olivia Washington) is one of my closest friends, so I get to be a part of their family and special occasions, which is such a special thing,” she said. Fanning attended New York University alongside Olivia in the early 2010s.

The War of the Worlds actress and Washington also just reunited on another project, The Equalizer 3, which premiered in theaters in August. At the time, Washington, 69, and Fanning gushed similarly about each other to ET while promoting the film. 

“Getting to work with Denzel again 20 years later was so special and (I) never expected that to happen and it was such a thrill that it did,” Fanning told ET on Wednesday. “I’m very lucky to know them all.”

Dakota Fanning and Denzel Washington – VALERIE MACON/AFP via Getty Images

In the summer, Washington shared that he was just as impressed by Fanning now as a grown woman as he was when they first worked together for Man on Fire in 2004. 

“She knows how to hit the ball back over the net,” he said at the time. “Sky’s the limit for her.”

If the sky is not the limit for the veteran actress, it’s at least the top of a New York penthouse. In December, Variety reported that Fanning and her sister, Elle Fanning, had purchased the rights to Paris Hilton’s memoir and were adapting it into a TV series alongside A24. The deal — made through the sisters’ production company Lewellen Pictures — is believed to have been in the six-figure range. 

ET asked Fanning — who will serve as an executive producer on the series — what attracted her to the memoir and made her interested in bringing it to the small screen, to which she had a blunt but completely reasonable three-word response. 

“Well, it’s Paris,” Fanning said at the Ripley premiere. 

No word on writers, directors or stars for the series. 

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