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Why Kate From Army Of The Dead Looks So Familiar

"Army of the Dead" dangles a lot of metaphorical keys in front of its audience's collective face, eliciting a culture-wide response of "Ooh, look at that." There's a zombie tiger. There are zombie horses and a zombie Elvis. It's also got helicopters, a ticking clock counting down to a nuclear strike, Tig Notaro smoking Swisher Sweets, a Las Vegas casino floor overrun by the undead, and the subliminal promise that a guy can have the body of Dave Bautista and not run his diner out of business by eating every raw meat patty that comes within arm's reach.

And then there's Kate, WHO worker and daughter of Bautista's Scott Ward. Kate becomes a part of the team when she learns that someone important to her has been escorted into Las Vegas, tossing an emotional wrench into the plan established by her estranged-but-trying father.

Kate is played by an English actress who's been tearing it up the last few years. And if she looks familiar, it could be for a couple of reasons.

Never let Ella Purnell go

It's strange to think about, but in 2010, when Keira Knightly was 25 years old, a casting director was instructed to find "a young Keira Knightly." Show business is brutal like that.

The end result of that direction was "Never Let Me Go," a big screen romance helmed by the same guy that directed the Johnny Cash "Hurt" music video, if that gives you any idea as to the general emotional aesthetic. In the story, replicated humans are raised as organ donors. They are consigned to death when their number comes up, with the looming potential of avoiding their fates if they fall in love. Imagine if the sci-fi clone aspects of "The Island" ran headlong into the emotional trauma of "The Lobster." That's "Never Let Me Go."

One of the trio of main characters is Ruth, played by Knightly in her adult, organ-ripe years. In her younger days, before her kidneys and gallbladder get good and juicy, she's played by Ella Purnell in her very first credited on-screen role. This kind of raw introduction would prepare her for later roles.

She lived in a home for peculiar children

A Hollywood actress can only have giant eyes for so long before Tim Burton inevitably shows up at their door with a hoop skirt, a can of AquaNet, and a full array of eyeliner pencils. In Ella Purnell's case, this terrible prophecy came to pass in 2016 with "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children."

Remembered five years later as "X-Men" for kids with even more feelings, "Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children" was Burton to its spiral-shaped bones. The film explores the lives of superpowered young people at a school for World War II-era My Chemical Romance enthusiasts. There's a kid who can stick little hearts in things and bring them to life, a kid with bees in his tummy, and, in the case of Purnell's character, Emma, an airbender kid that floats off like a balloon if she isn't tethered to the ground or anchored by big metal shoes. Also, the bad guys want to eat the good guys' eyeballs. Ever wondered what it would have looked likeĀ if someone tried to build an MCU out of old Edward Gorey sketches? This is the film for you.

Purnell brought class to Belgravia

In 2020, the team behind "Downton Abbey" returned to the world of historical upper-crusters wearing eight layers of clothing and not worrying about it because, well, they had people whose entire literal job was to do laundry. It's a classic for a reason.

"Belgravia" ran on Epix for six episodes and relayed the tale of 19th century aristocrats the Trenchards, a new money family enjoying their fresh West Egg lifestyle and the scandals that come with it. Here, Ella Purnell plays Lady Maria Grey, seemingly destined to marry the snobby John Bellasis (Adam James) at her mother's instruction, despite clear trepidation on her own part at the possibility that he may be a big fat dingus.

The show was warmly received by audiences and critics alike. The Times called it "a meaty historical potboiler, bubbling with issues of class and sex," while the Sydney Morning Herald described it as having "all the touchstones of a bodice-ripper." We're not 100% sure what that means, but it sounds saucy as the dickens.