Rose Byrne reveals inspiration behind her Republican strategist in new film

Rose Byrne has revealed the real-life people who inspired her character in new political satire Irresistible.

The Spy actress stars opposite Steve Carell in the film about a local election that draws the national spotlight, which was written and directed by former Daily Show host Jon Stewart.

She plays a Republican strategist and frequent television news contributor in the film and told the PA news agency: “Jon initially pointed me toward The War Room, the really famous documentary from the 90s by D. A. Pennebaker, about the Clinton election.

“There is the great character of James Carville, who was the head of his campaign, and then Mary Matalin who was the Republican strategist (and went on to marry Carville) and they have a relationship in real life but they were on different sides of the political divide.

“So that was a great source of inspiration, the sort of sparring chemistry they had and deeply opposing ideas but the sexiness between them and that was one of the relationships he was inspired by.”

Byrne said it feels impossible to satirise the current state of politics in the US, adding: “It’s already satirical enough when you watch it, it’s like so larger than life, the news has become this circus of information so how do you satirise something that is already making fun of itself?

“I think you need someone like Jon Stewart who is a singular voice. His understanding of it is so sophisticated and he can explain it to a layman like me, or he can talk to a pundit like a Bill O’Reilly and the legendary arguments they would have when they both had their shows. So he really is an anomaly like that.”

She continued: “I have gone through phases of news media diets of what I will watch and won’t and I’ve gone through diets of just really going the opposite way and watching a lot of very conservative media, a lot more cult personality types, to see the whole landscape because those programmes are so popular and are defining so many people’s political views, and then had the range where I don’t watch anything at all, so it depends on my appetite.”

Irresistible is available to rent at home from Sky Store, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV & iTunes, Google Play and other digital retailers

Most Read in Showbiz