Read more: Saoirse Ronan to play an assassin in two movies

Irish actress Saoirse Ronan is the toast of the British film industry and the press this week, who are calling the 16 year old actress the new British it-girl.

The breathless plaudits are coming despite the fact that she's actually from County Carlow and her name means 'freedom' in Irish.

Apparently if you're hugely talented you can get a British passport without question these days.

The 16-year-old actress attended the premiere of her new Peter Weir directed film The Way Back alongside fellow Irish actor Colin Farrell in London on Wednesday night, where she stunned the crowd with her -all-grown-up looks and sense of style.

And as well as impressing the British film bigwigs, Saoirse has also left an lasting impression on her older cast mates, including American actor Ed Harris, with whom she stars in The Way Back.

Harris told the press: 'She was so present in a cool way and really mysterious. I loved working with her. She was just 16 when we made it, I think, a little bit older than my daughter. She had a wonderful work ethic, really friendly, always in good spirits, charming, pretty.

'I felt a little bit protective of her, though she didn’t really need that. We had a really nice thing. I loved just being totally simple and honest with her. She’s living and breathing in the moment and you’re able to just experience that with her.

Read more: Saoirse Ronan to play an assassin in two movies