ABU DHABI // The model Lily Cole took to the red carpet to the delight of fans at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival last night for the Middle East premiere of the vampire movie The Moth Diaries.
Cole plays the lead character in the big-screen adaptation of Rachel Klein's popular 2002 gothic-themed novel, directed by Mary Harron.
The British model-turned-actress appeared at the Abu Dhabi Theatre wearing a long, figure-hugging red and black dress by the UK designer Jonathan Saunders and towering black Louis Vuitton.
"It's exciting to be here. It's a very different culture than Europe, but I always love travelling and being in a different world," said Cole, who is known for her red hair.
The Moth Diaries is her fifth feature film since she landed a leading role in 2009 in Terry Gilliam's The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus.
On working with Harron, she said: "I think that Mary is a really interesting director, and she is really hands-on and collaborative."
The movie, which is Harron's first stint in the director's seat since 2005, is described as a "Twilight-ish thriller" peppered with seduction, desire, jealousy, and a few dead bodies.
"I wanted to make this film because it has supernatural elements and is really a psychological portrait of young girls going through the turmoils of teenage craziness," she said.
Harron last directed The Notorious Bettie Page, a movie about a 1950s American pin-up model, but is best-known for her 2000 film American Psycho, starring Christian Bale.
Cole and her co-star Sarah Gadon were honoured this year with ADFF's first Black Pearl Rising Star Award, which recognises young and emerging actors in the international cinema scene.
"It feels really, really nice to win this award," said Cole.
"I play quite an obscure, strange character in this film, so it felt kind of risky when I was doing it, but it's nice to have that approved of in the end," she said.
The two play opposite the Irish actress Sarah Bolger, who starred in the film adaptation of the children's fantasy series The Spiderwick Chronicles and is best-known for her role in the television series The Tudors.
The 20-year-old actress was wearing a sparkling cream-coloured sequinned dress.
"I really love it here. I went to the mosque today, and I'm really immersing myself into the culture," Bolger said.