Five things you didn't know about...

Mary Elizabeth Winstead

She's in cinemas right now in The Thing, a prequel to the John Carpenter classic and having crossed our radars we thought we needed to know a little more about her. Here's five random things we found out about Mary Elizabeth Winstead:

1 She was the last person in Final Destination 3 to die, run over at high speed by a runaway subway train. However, she claims never to have had a near-death experience of her own. Unless you count driving in LA.

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2 She was reared on the fatty fast foods of North Carolina, but an early love of ballet (she nearly went pro but was too tall) and a later liking for kick-boxing have kept her pretty safe from morbid obesity.

3 She’s played the daughter of bona fide Hollywood royalty. That’s right, John McClane’s offspring in Die Hard 4.0. She thinks it’s the greatest action movie series ever, so she must have her head screwed on.

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4 She’s run the gamut from US daytime soap to a kooky comic-book turn in Scott Pilgrim vs the World. Up next she is the tough-cookie paleontologist in a prequel to classic Eighties horror The Thing, cleverly titled The Thing. Think Ripley from Aliens — but more attractive.

5 She’s a self-confessed homebody, who prefers to have people over for drinks and poker than to go out partying. As she puts it: “Doing stuff at home with people I really love.” We can work with that.

The Thing is out now