Archive for the ‘Interviews’ Category
Posted by admin on February 21, 2024

For our 30th annual Hollywood Issue, we’ve chosen 11 vibrant, wildly different stars seizing this moment. We gathered them together over two sunny January days in Los Angeles, under the direction of photographer and filmmaker Gordon von Steiner, to talk about everything from their first auditions to their most unforgettable lines—and, of course, to create this year’s VF Hollywood cover, an homage to our first foray into the form three decades ago.

The uncertainties, of course, can’t be denied: The entertainment industry just emerged from the most profound work stoppage in its history. Audiences are splintering, bottom-line priorities are intensifying, and there are still existential questions about the future even as cameras start rolling again. But if movies as surprising and visionary as Barbie and Oppenheimer can smash box office records even as Marvel and DC franchises nose-dive, it’s clearly time to shake things up.

For our 30th annual Hollywood Issue, we’ve chosen 11 vibrant, wildly different stars seizing this moment. We gathered them together over two sunny January days in Los Angeles, under the direction of photographer and filmmaker Gordon von Steiner, to talk about everything from their first auditions to their most unforgettable lines—and, of course, to create this year’s VF Hollywood cover, an homage to our first foray into the form three decades ago.

The uncertainties, of course, can’t be denied: The entertainment industry just emerged from the most profound work stoppage in its history. Audiences are splintering, bottom-line priorities are intensifying, and there are still existential questions about the future even as cameras start rolling again. But if movies as surprising and visionary as Barbie and Oppenheimer can smash box office records even as Marvel and DC franchises nose-dive, it’s clearly time to shake things up.

And you’ll see a new generation rising, with bright talents like The Bikeriders’ Jodie Comer, Saltburn’s Barry Keoghan, and Wednesday’s Jenna Ortega imbuing complex roles with extraordinary humanity.

Some of the actors here were primed for a whirlwind before everything abruptly went quiet with the actors and writers strikes.

Ortega, who will star in Tim Burton’s Beetlejuice sequel this fall, says Wednesday’s record-breaking Netflix launch, which closed out 2022, had been dizzying. “I didn’t know what to say or do,” she says. “I just became very confused emotionally.” The break imposed by the strike helped her remember why she’s been acting full tilt since she was nine: “To still enjoy the job just as much 12 years later—having seen all of the ugly and wonderful and extreme—is pretty cool.”

Others couldn’t slow down at all. Because Greta Lee’s Oscar-nominated movie, Past Lives, was an independent production, she had the mixed blessing of being allowed to do promotion for a year straight: “That’s why I feel like a corpse woman who’s ready to lie down and crawl into either a cheeseburger or bowl of spaghetti.”

But like many of her peers here, Lee spent years navigating narrow-minded business models, so she knows this moment matters. “For myself and for other Asian American women, I don’t want to accept my previous reality—I can’t,” she says. “I have to make up for lost time.”

Randolph, meanwhile, may well take home an Oscar on March 10 for her work in The Holdovers after making a name for herself on the New York stage. “When you truly understand the climate of this industry and who’s telling the stories, we’re marginalized. And then on top of that, to be a woman of color who is curvy?” she says. “This outdoes the dreams that I dreamt…. I let go of the wheel in that respect a long time ago.”

Lily Gladstone, an Oscar nominee this year for Killers of the Flower Moon, was raised on the Blackfeet Reservation in northwestern Montana, and came up fighting for a paltry selection of Indigenous parts in film and television. “You kick the door down to hold it open,” she says. She’s now the face of progress and could become the first Native American performer to ever win best actress. “I advocate for other people before I advocate for myself,” she says. “Even just making dinner reservations, I count the whole party and I forget myself.”

On a hazy winter afternoon, Charles Melton paces on his deck in the Silver Lake hills. He’s demonstrating exactly how, and where, he developed the physicality of his character, Joe, in May December, which has vaulted the Riverdale alum from teen-soap idol to art house heartthrob.

Between sips of Coke Zero, Melton gazes out at the panoramic view of the Los Angeles skyline. “I’ve always been a big dreamer, and I’ve tried not to set any limits in my mind because I’ll get caught up in the limits outside of me,” he says. “I’m always seeking. My ambition is always driving me.”

He can’t say what’s next, after so many prizes and nominations. But Melton has come out of May December focused and reoriented. He’s ready to take the town in his hands—and you hear that a lot from this group. “There’s been this democratization of creativity where gatekeepers have been demoted and everyone can make things,” says Portman.

Audiences are already reaping the rewards. —David Canfield

Meet the Stars of the 2024 Hollywood Portfolio


The British actor is only 30 and already halfway to an EGOT, but she swears she’s not following a playbook: “I am just following my gut.”


 

Posted by admin on January 16, 2024

She’s a rare breed of actor, one who seemingly can do no wrong.

From one project to the next, Jodie Comer’s talent only seems to grow as the world takes watch.

The Liverpudlian is undoubtedly one of the country’s finest performers and her latest film ‘The End We Start From’ is demonstrative of just why her stock is so high within the industry.

She plays a new mum, whose son is born into an apocalyptic world. Climate change has come to a devastating head and Jodie’s character “mother” is forced to abandon her home in search of safety.

While the film isn’t ostensibly about raising awareness of ecological and environmental issues, Jodie believes it could get people talking.

“They are in the midst of a climate crisis, but I think in the telling of the story so much of that is symbolic of her experience.

“It’s quite a nuanced telling. I think all art has that ability, change happens even if it’s just a conversation between friends.”

Whether it’s the charismatic physcopath she played in Killing Eve, or her multiple award-winning stint as a defence barrister on stage in Prima Face, Jodie seeks out work that forces her to dig deep.

I ask her why she leans towards raw and tangible projects and her response is simply, “they excite me and provoke emotion,” she says.

“It’s what I’m drawn to and I think you learn something different on every job, which always kind of stays with you.”

The End We Start From is an outlier in the “disaster movie” sphere, in that there aren’t many scenes of widespread chaos or drawn-out fight sequences.

Rather it favours a focus on individual experience and emotion from within to help deliver the story.

Director Mahalia Belo, who gave birth during lockdown, wanted the film to be as much about the mother and her baby, as it was about the world crumbling around them.

“I like it when films speak about the internal in an external way. You kind of manage to get scale and scope through that,” she says.

“It was important to feel rooted around a women’s journey. It’s about the future and what we are raising them (our children) into.”

Having seen the movie, I can tell you that there is rarely a moment where Jodie is without a baby in her arms.

Real babies were used for the majority of filming and that often posed a charming challenge for the cast.

Jodie remembers the one big rule that “they have to have a break every 20 minutes”.

They’d be “taken away after 20 minutes and another baby would be brought in. Motherhood is explored in a very unique way and working with babies so extensively really created beautiful, honest and spontaneous moments.”

The End We Start From is in cinemas on January 19.

ITV News

Posted by admin on January 16, 2024

“He just came in and he was like, ‘Let’s go!’.”

The End We Start From might seem like your usual bleak post-apocalyptic movie, but Jodie Comer has shared a filming experience for a more joyful scene than you might have expected.

Set in a world that sees London submerged by flood waters, the new movie sees Comer play a mum who tries to find her way home with her newborn child after she’s separated from her family.

Along the way, she meets various characters and one played by Benedict Cumberbatch leads to a surprise dance party. Filming that sequence ended up being “cathartic” for both Comer and her character.

“It was amazing, because we’d been shooting for a good few weeks. It was a Friday night. When we got to the dance part, we had ten minutes, two takes. The moon was so full, we put the music on and it was incredibly cathartic,” she told Digital Spy.


“I think as well because it was an intense shoot, and we just had this moment where we could kind of let go. Everyone was vibrating, which was nice.

“It provides such a huge release for the characters, it’s that split second where they lose all inhibitions and forget the reality of where they are. And it was great that it was Benedict actually, because he just came in and he was like, ‘Let’s go!’.”

This moment of light in an otherwise bleak setting was as important for director Mahalia Belo as it was for Comer.


“I feel it’s not hopeless. It is a journey, and it’s something where you have to see the world in a different way. And you have to see the world through a baby’s eyes, and also through the shifting landscape of the world,” Belo told Digital Spy.

“At the end of it, you have to feel like there’s room for improvement, and that can only come from hope. But also the humour element, we were keen on these little moments of humour that needed to be in it.”

The End We Start From is released in UK cinemas on January 19.

Posted by admin on January 16, 2024

This is the year Jodie Comer becomes a bona fide movie star. Since her Emmy and Bafta-winning role as Villanelle in Killing Eve catapulted her into the big leagues, Comer has become one of the planet’s hottest acting properties.

At every new turn, Comer showcases her remarkable ability to transform and enhances her reputation further. If Killing Eve gave her the platform to explore her range and ability with accents in one incredible role, then Comer’s West End debut in hard-hitting solo drama Prima Facie confirmed she was in it for the long term.

The show transferred to Broadway, netting her a Tony Award to go with her Olivier, as Comer’s powerful performance as a lawyer navigating the misogyny of the legal system from the other side of the bench left audiences spellbound.

Before that, there were rave reviews for the hardcore realism of Jack Thorne’s Channel 4 pandemic drama Help, in which she played a care worker during the Covid crisis alongside friend and mentor Stephen Graham.

A pattern is starting to form around Jodie Comer’s career. Scripts of the highest quality, the very best collaborators, and work that speaks to important issues.

Another starring role in new independent British film The End We Start From confirms her as a talent for the ages.

“Ultimately, it’s a story about motherhood set within the midst of a climate crisis,” says Comer, when talking to The Big Issue via Zoom from London just before a well-earned Christmas break.

The End We Start From, adapted by Alice Birch from Megan Hunter’s novel and directed by Mahalia Belo, is a film of rare, raw power and poetry.

At its heart is Woman, played by Comer – the action moves too fast for us to be properly introduced, the only character with a name is baby Zeb. We meet Woman on the verge of bringing new life into a wild world in which the climate emergency is wreaking havoc in this country.

Extreme weather sees flood waters rising as Woman’s waters break. After giving birth to baby Zeb, Woman and her husband (Joel Fry) are forced to flee the comforts of their beautiful London home.

From there, it is a story of survival. The joy and anxiety of the extraordinary, intimate early days of motherhood are set against a gradual and entirely believable societal breakdown.

“I felt the exploration of that environmental crisis was unique,” says Comer. “We were exploring on a very human level, which really moved me – a lot more than a lot of films we’ve seen that maybe depict these kinds of happenings.”

The dialogue and intimate moments and exploration of Woman’s body were so clear on the page – and I felt so special, being able to do this

Jodie Comer

This is a depiction of early motherhood like none other in recent times. Raw, visceral, isolating and at times terrifying – with snatched moments of pure joy punctuating the climate chaos all around her.

“Not being a mother myself, I really want women to watch this and see themselves depicted in a truthful light,” says Comer.

“The dialogue and intimate moments and exploration of Woman’s body were so clear on the page – and I felt so special, being able to do this.

“The relationship women have with their body after they have a baby and how they feel transformed and there’s a part of their selves that is lost – we really explore that. And she’s going through all this in the midst of an environmental catastrophe.”

Apocalypse soon

The environmental crisis is not played out in the usual action film way. This feels like it could be set tomorrow. And it could be any one of us. It is up-close and intimate, entirely believable, the logic of the progression from leaving homes and cities as waters rise to finding safer spaces further out (as villages start closing their borders to outsiders), the refuge proving temporary as food scarcity hits, families are split, and people congregate in camps.

There are no major set piece scenes with Big Ben toppling into the Thames to tell the story. Instead, there is an evolving sense of dread as Woman navigates a world in crisis, fiercely focused on her new baby. It will resonate. Loudly. As versions of current global crises are shown on our doorstep.

At one point, Woman is forced to wait for a small boat to take her to a small island offering sanctuary. This film offers multiple new ways to look at the biggest issues in the world we are living in and to question our responses.

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“And the baby doesn’t know any different,” adds Comer. “They’re experiencing the world for the first time – all those revelations where everything is so sensory and so new. That provides such relief for Woman in moments, because she can’t help but find joy or ecstasy in a smile or a new noise he’s making.”

For screenwriter Alice Birch, whose previous work includes Florence Pugh’s brilliant breakout film role in Lady Macbeth and BBC One lockdown smash Normal People, this was highly relatable.

“Most of my work is interested in and engaged with women. I read the book just after I’d had my first child,” she says.

“The way motherhood and those early days were articulated in this kind of savage but poetic language, I found really moving.

“To have that told alongside this climate catastrophe felt like a frighteningly realistic portrayal of what that could be if it were to happen tomorrow. This is not some massive disaster film – it’s a bit more banal and soggy.

“I wrote the first draft during the first lockdown with my second tiny baby. So it was quite a heady experience and felt very within reach. Some of the state I was in definitely made it into the draft.”

Posted by admin on January 16, 2024

The End We Start From, Megan Hunter’s 2017 novel about a mother and her baby in a flooded city, seems increasingly timely. As the film is released, she reveals why she wanted a more female-centred take on disaster survival movies

At an unknown point in the near future, a woman is giving birth. As her contractions start, her home in London is flooded and, as her baby is born, it becomes clear that a climate catastrophe of biblical proportions has begun. A sea of water invades the city as the woman takes her first postpartum, post-apocalyptic pee, then flees for higher ground with her newborn in a car seat.

So begins the story of a new survival film starring the British actor Jodie Comer. The End We Start From goes on general release in UK and Irish cinemas from Friday and has a star-studded cast: Benedict Cumberbatch, Joel Fry, Gina McKee, Nina Sosanya and Mark Strong all appear alongside Comer.

For the author Megan Hunter, who wrote the extraordinary 2017 novel – her debut – which the film is based on, the plot was obvious: “I’ve always had an apocalyptic imagination – I remember, even as a child, dreaming about the sea overwhelming the Earth,” she says.

After having two children in her 20s, the 39-year-old found herself writing lots of poetry and short stories about motherhood in her spare time. “Then I had this idea to write a story about a woman giving birth in the future. And it seemed inevitable to me that she would be facing a climate disaster.”

Posted by admin on January 11, 2024

Best known for her BAFTA and Emmy award winning performance as the cold-blooded assassin Villanelle in Killing Eve, Jodie Comer is back and has teamed up with the award-winning British Director Mahalia Belo.

Their new environmental disaster thriller ‘The End We Start From’ sees Jodie’s character giving birth amid the floodwaters of a submerged London.



 

Posted by admin on November 16, 2023
Proud Northerner Jodie Comer is the most radiant – and relatable – young star in Britain’s acting firmament. Photographed by Tim Walker, styled by Edward Enninful
Jodie Comer has an Emmy, a Tony, and the sort of incandescent beauty that prompts skincare brands to start writing huge cheques. She also used to work on the checkout at Tesco, loves a roast dinner and – despite being halfway to EGOT status and fully a household name – lived at home with her mum and dad in Liverpool until earlier this year. White hot Hollywood property she may be, but Jodie, 30, remains undeniably, delightfully British.

Just take her reflections on teenage nights out (“six-inch heels, dress, no coat”), her WhatsApp group with her closest mates (“fire, 24 hours a day, seven days a week”), and her early attempts at a beauty routine (“I used to wash my face with a baby wipe!”) All of which will be deeply familiar to millennial women in the UK, most of whom also had Saturday jobs and frequented suburban nightclubs and slept in their make-up. Perhaps it’s part of the reason why the nation has taken this particular homegrown talent so firmly to its heart – Jodie, we imagine, is just like us.

 

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Posted by admin on November 06, 2023

It’s fair to say that Jodie Comer can do no wrong, whether it’s on stage, on screen or on the red carpet. Proving the point yet again, the actor stepped out at the LACMA Art + Film Gala in LA over the weekend, wearing a look that can only be described as a masterclass in the art of the smoky eye.

Focused around a palette of hazy browns – specifically Tom Ford’s Eyeshadow Quad in Mink Mirage, according to Comer’s make-up artist Georgie Eisdell – the mocha-toned mix added subtle drama to Jodie’s face without feeling too heavy. To recreate the same effect, use your darkest shade along your lash line to add intensity, then gently smudge it out over lids and brow bones incorporating the lighter colours with a soft blending brush as you go. To add extra definition, the actor’s lashes were coated in YSL’s inky black Faux Cils Mascara to anchor the smokiness.

Comer wore her smoky eye on the red carpet, but happily for the rest of us, the look is the perfect way to segue from the office to after-dark activities. Although it’s resolutely smoky, the lack of sparkle in the shadows means it doesn’t veer into “Christmas party” territory, nor does it feel too full-on for a quick drink after work. To make it work on you as well as it does on her, take Comer’s lead and pair with sparkling skin (hers comes courtesy of Noble Panacea’s Brilliant Glow Hydration Oil) and blusher with an almost toffee undertone, to tie all the tones together.

 

VOGUE

Posted by admin on June 05, 2023

Each year we photograph Tony nominees, and talk with them about their craft. This year we focused on actors.

 

“Everyone always said theater was incomparable, like there was nothing like it, and I never understood what they meant. When you’re in a room of that many people all experiencing something at the same time, the energy is electrifying, and that has been one of the greatest joys about this experience. It’s intoxicating.” — Jodie Comer

 

New York Times

Posted by admin on June 05, 2023

Jodie Comer, who won an Emmy for her role of a Russian assassin on TV’s “Killing Eve,” is now an Olivier Award-winner and Tony-nominee for her performance in the one-woman play “Prima Facie,” as a London barrister confronting injustice in the legal system with regards to victims of sexual assault. CBS News’ Erin Moriarty talks with Comer, and with playwright Suzie Miller, about the dynamics of the play, the responses from audiences, and how a “scrappy” young woman from Liverpool with no formal training found success on stage.



Jodie Comer is having a very good year. In April, she took home a prestigious Olivier Award for best actress in the play “Prima Facie.” One month later, she was also nominated for a best actress Tony for the same role on Broadway.

When asked if she expected the impact that the play, and her performance, would have, Comer replied, “No, no, I think we were all really taken aback by it, actually. But I remember when we did the first preview in London – and this was the first time performing in front of an audience – a lot of it was crying, like very audibly and very quite loud and unashamed, and very guttural.”

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