When she was 14, Cooke secured her first local talent agent in Manchester, who placed her in a number of commercials. In 2012, she appeared in One Direction's "Autumn Term" tour video, as a student getting a piggyback ride from Harry Styles. During her audition for this bit part, Cooke entertained the producers by performing a split. Although Cooke's agent discouraged her from enrolling in drama school because she was already getting acting work, Cooke was keen on applying to the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA). She made it to the final round of auditions, but was not accepted.
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