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English actress Rosamund Pike is best known to movie audiences as James Bond’s icy nemesis Miranda Frost in Die Another Day. But this October, she stars opposite Ben Affleck in the coveted role of Amy Dunne in the film version of author Gillian Flynn’s best-selling novel Gone Girl — a role that will undoubtedly turn the Oxford-­educated actress into a household name. For inspiration for her character, Pike looked to “high-profile relationships that captured the public’s imagination,” such as Carolyn Bessette and John F. Kennedy Jr. “They fascinate me because relatively little is known, though a great deal is speculated about,” she says.

The daughter of professional opera singers (her father is a tenor, her mother a soprano), Pike grew up traveling extensively all over Europe due to her parents’ professions, and today, the 35-year-old soon-to-be mother of two is a self-professed “great traveler who yearns for adventure and escape.” Here’s more about Pike’s new role, indulgences and inspirations.

Character analysis “Amy Dunne is the kind of character who makes you rethink yourself, your friends, your husband or wife, your lover, your children — she stands out in modern fiction for her way of expressing anger and challenging people to stand up to their actions and face the consequences. Not that she is necessarily moral. You may not like her, but you will probably be fascinated by her.”

Sense of adventure “My filming schedule in the U.K. meant I had to fly 8,000 miles there and back for basically one beer [to meet with director David Fincher in St. Louis], but that is the kind of adventure I relish. Like the time I found out I could have a seat at the restaurant El Bulli before it closed and ran to Spain for less than 24 hours for one dinner.”

Road tripping “I have really enjoyed traveling in Britain of late — to Scotland, and to the seaside in Cornwall. But I have done some great American road trips — through the South, through California, from Memphis to New York. I really enjoy trying to get inside the personalities of the different states.”

Comfort food “If I am missing the food of the American South, I head to the Moral Fox in Notting Hill for the best fried chicken and sweet-potato mash around. I also love the organic food at The Duke of Cambridge pub near where I live.”

London muse “London continues to inspire me in every way. For comedy, I always check what is going on at the Soho Theatre. For classical music, I love the Wigmore Hall’s lunchtime concerts. And for inspiring programming, I always look up the events at the incredible Wilton’s Music Hall. They schedule everything from dancing to cinema nights to ping-pong tournaments.”