AN actress who is taking the Cannes Film Festival by storm is on track for movie stardom after getting her big break in the most unlikely of places – Tilbury railway station.

Katie Jarvis, 17, from Tilbury, has a major part in the movie Fish Tank, which is showcasing at the glamorous French riveria resort.

The film, directed by BAFTA award winner Andrea Arnold, is one of three British contenders for the coveted Palme D’Or. It also stars Kierston Wareing, 30, from Leigh.

Katie plays an isolated 15-year-old who lives with her heavy-drinking mother (Kierston) in a dreary council housing complex in Dartford.

The teenage sensation, who cannot be in Cannes as she gave birth to her daughter Lilly Mae just five days ago, was spotted for the role by a casting agent working for Arnold.

After drawing a blank with agencies, the director and her crew looked around youth clubs, markets and shopping centres in Essex before finding Katie in Tilbury.

She was arguing with her boyfriend Brian across the platform at the station when the agent spotted her.

Arnold, from Dartford, said: “Filming was an interesting experience for her, because she’d never done anything like this before – she was not long out of school and hadn’t yet done any form of work.”

Katie, who is recovering from the birth at home with her baby. said: “I learned a lot doing the film. Whereas before I was doing nothing all the time, it made me learn that I could do things if I wanted to.

“It was hard, but it was rewarding. It shows you don’t have to go to drama school to get into it, but I think I was one of a kind. I don’t think anybody else will get picked off a train station.”

Kierston, 30, has also been walking the red carpet at Cannes to promote the film. She made a name for herself after winning a role in Ken Loach’s 2007 film It’s a Free World.

She had been a struggling actress for ten years before deciding to jack it all in and train as a legal secretary – before finding out she had landed the role.

Kierston, who is still happy living in Leigh, was due to grace the red carpet last night for the Fish Tank premiere.

“I couldn’t believe it, Prada have lent me a dress and a vintage shawl,” said Kierston. “I was even given Chopard diamonds to wear.

“I never thought this would ever happen to me – I’ve come from coming to Cannes a few years ago, dressed in jeans and staying in a caravan, to wearing Prada and meeting A-listers.”

Kierston said she was hoping to meet Brad Pitt who was due to jet into Cannes to promote his new film Inglorious Bastards, which coincidentally stars her Fish Tank co-star Michael Fassbender.