It literally took me all day to read the three scripts… so from the off I was hooked.
How would you describe Gwenda?
The first word that springs to mind to describe Gwenda is ‘desperate’, I don’t think Gwenda is desperate herself but she is in desperate circumstances. It might be ruthless to think that she wouldn’t find love. I don’t know how tough the times were in the 50s but from what I’ve seen, read and heard it was a different time for women so maybe this was her only chance and if it is her only chance then it’s not an ideal situation.
What really drew you to taking on this role?
I respected Sarah from the outset because it literally took me all day to read the three scripts, as there was so much detail in the stage directions. So from the off I was hooked. In the last scene there was a comedic element to Gwenda’s tragedy that was exactly to my taste. What line am I walking ‘am I a joke or am I tragic?’.
What is Gwenda’s relationship like with Rachel?
Rachel is the boss originally, a tough taskmaster and from a very privileged position and doesn’t identify with Gwenda, who is from a lower class than Rachel. Rachel looks down on Gwenda, is quite disdainful of her and maybe thinks she’s common but Gwenda doesn’t give a toss and says, “I’m going to have your husband and she does.” She gets her man but only through a series of quite severe events.
Does she genuinely have feelings for Leo?
She absolutely loves Leo. I think it is a genuine love affair between them because there are so many hurdles along the way. Gwenda is a complete human I couldn’t see a way in which this could work if she didn’t love the man. Certainly having all the stepchildren she is set to have (and none of them like her), she couldn’t enter into that relationship based on anything other than love.
What is her relationship like with Leo’s adopted children?
She definitely likes Tina and they’ve not had any difficult interactions; nor has she had any challenging interactions with Mickey so there’s no history there to worry about but Mary hates her. In that respect she has to deal with Mary but I don’t think it really matters to Gwenda – it’s just irksome. Hester is young and there’s indifference there as well, but there’s a jealousy from everyone because Leo’s such a magnanimous creature who has so much power and is the keeper of the love in the family. In that respect there’s a difficulty for anyone joining a family where there is an established way of doing things and children involved so it is particularly difficult for Gwenda.
What is Gwenda’s reaction to Arthur Calgary’s arrival?
When he first arrives she thinks he is there to help with the wedding, which is quite a funny scene. Then for Gwenda it becomes so much less about Arthur and what he is there to tell them than it is about her impending wedding which his presence can potentially ruin. It becomes very alarming and dangerous for her. He is an obstacle to be removed. He is also odd which jars with Gwenda who is very straight down the line in her life. She is a practical woman who sees Calgary as a very complicated character and she wants Leo to listen to her opinions of him.
What is it like to work with Bill Nighy and what does he bring to the character of Leo?
Bill brings everything to the role, he is a real charmer and as an elegant man himself he brought elegance to Leo.
Describe the era as reflected in the costumes you wear and how it helps you build the character?
Trisha (Biggar) has put such care and attention into the detail of the costumes. That period is such fun for me to play because I’m curvy. So she really fitted everything to my frame, which was incredibly helpful because I really wanted to have a relationship with the costumes and wear them as much as they wear you. I had a bikini scene that was such fun and very colourful and certainly the bikinis in the 50s were far more flattering for a figure like mine than they are now; much less revealing. The costumes were a real highlight and delight for me. With regards to my makeup and hair look it was fun to be a red head, quite freeing. I’ve been dark and blond but never red which has an otherness that I really enjoyed and helped me become Gwenda. She’s a fiery creature so it all helps.
Was everything on the page already in Sarah’s script or did you have to do any additional research for the part?
I always start with the script in the first instance but the most important relationship I have is the one with the director (Sandra Goldbacher). I definitely got into very detailed conversations with Sandra about where Gwenda had been and how she ended up in a room like this with very little income and all of the back story that brings her to the place that she finds herself in now. That’s all part of putting the story together.
Alice Eve and Jonathan Majors have also been cast in Nabil Elderkin’s feature film directorial debut.
Rising stars Charlie Plummer, Kelvin Harrison Jr. and Jacob Latimore will star in Gully, the feature film directorial debut of music video and commercial director Nabil Elderkin. Alice Eve and Jonathan Majors round out the cast.
With a script by Marcus Guillory, the film is set in a slightly dystopian vision of LA. It follows three disaffected teenagers, all victims of extreme childhoods, who are running a hedonistic riot as they try to work out a way in life.
The project is produced by Brad Feinstein of Romulus Entertainment along with Tom Butterfield, Ben Pugh, Corey Smyth and Alex Georgiou. It’s executive produced by Joseph F. Ingrassia, Gabriela Revilla Lugo and Kweku Mandela. Romulus Entertainment is fully financing the project. Endeavor Content is representing domestic rights on the film, and Christopher Tricarico f Tricarico Chavez, LLC. is doing production legal.
“We could not be more excited to work with our amazing cast and give Nabil the opportunity to shoot his first feature,” said Feinstein. “With such a successful body of work as a commercial and video director, he is ready to take the next step forward and make this incredible film that will be on the cutting edge of youth culture.”
The script has gone through the Sundance Institute Feature Film Program on both the writer and director tracks. Adds Feinstein: “The support of Sundance labs has helped shape this into a special piece of material that will take on the many unspoken issues that are dealt with by inner city youth while pushing social boundaries in the wake of the current Time’s Up movement.”
Elderkin is a photographer and music video director. Among the many artists he’s worked with are Kanye West, Frank Ocean, Seal, Nicki Minaj and John Legend. He also made the documentary Bouncing Cats about teaching breakdancing to Ugandan youth.
Plummer was most recently seen in All the Money in the World opposite the Oscar-nominated Christopher Plummer. His next movie, Lean on Pete, will be released by A24 on April 8 (after playing at SXSW). His upcoming projects include Pippa Bianco’s upcoming untitled A24 film (which is in post) and Spontaneous, which will be released by Awesomeness and also stars Katherine Langford. He’s repped by CAA, Primary Wave Entertainment, Zoom Talent Management, Peikoff/Mahan.
Harrison was seen in several films at Sundance: Monster, Assassination Nation and Monsters and Men. His recent credits including Dee Rees’ Mudbound and horror film It Comes At Night. He has several films in post, including JT Leroy with Kristen Stewart and Diane Kruger. He’s repped by WME and Del, Shaw.
Latimore currently stars on The Chi on Showtime, and was previously seen in Kathryn Bigelow’s Detroit. His upcoming films include William H. Macy’s directorial effort Krystal. He’s repped by CAA, Geffen Management Group and Ziffren Brittenham.
Untogether will premiere at Tribeca Film Festival 2018 (April 23)
The Tribeca Film Festival on Wednesday revealed the feature film lineup for its 17th edition, which is set to take place in April in New York.
Supported by HSBC
The Spotlight Narrative section is a launching pad for exciting new independent premieres with a focus on marquee filmmakers and performers.
Untogether, directed and written by Emma Forrest. Produced by Scott LaStaiti, Luke Daniels, Brandon Hogan. (USA) — World Premiere. Former writing prodigy Andrea tries not to fall for her one-night stand, while her sister Tara throws herself into a newfound religious zeal (and the arms of her charismatic rabbi) to avoid the truth about her current relationship in this multi-character romantic drama. With Jamie Dornan, Jemima Kirke, Lola Kirke, Ben Mendelsohn, Billy Crystal, Alice Eve, Jennifer Grey, Scott Caan.
The premiere of Replicas was postponed to 24 August 2018.
The information made available by Exhibitor Relations and IMDb has also changed the release date on its site.
Starring: Alice Eve, Thomas Middleditch & Keanu Reeves.
Dakota Fanning stars as a woman who escapes a group home hoping to get her Star Trek script produced in Hollywood. On the way she must conquer a new world full of challenges. Also starring Toni Collette, Alice Eve and Patton Oswalt.
Alice Eve Will Join Season Two of Marvel’s Iron Fist
Alice Eve is set to appear in “Iron Fist” Season 2 on Netflix, Variety has learned exclusively.
Eve’s role in the series is being kept under wraps, but she joins a returning cast that includes series star Finn Jones along with Jessica Henwick, Tom Pelphrey, Jessica Stroup, and Sacha Dhawan. An English actress who has appeared in film, television, and theatre, Eve is best known to American audiences for her role as Carol Marcus in the film “Star Trek: Into Darkness.” She also recently appeared in the third season of “Black Mirror” and the Lionsgate film “Misconduct.” She will also co-star in the Dakota Fanning-led film “Please Stand By,” due to be released in theaters in January.
“We are very excited to have an actress of Alice’s stature join the cast of ‘Marvel’s Iron Fist,’” said Marvel’s head of television and series executive producer Jeph Loeb. “Her exceptional talent brings an intrigue and danger to her character unlike anyone else.”
Eve is repped by Independent Talent Group in the U.K and CAA and Untitled Entertainment in the U.S.
“Iron Fist” stars “Game of Thrones” alum Jones as Danny Rand, the heir to the multi-billion dollar Rand Corp. who returns to New York after training in martial arts for years in the mysterious city of K’un-Lun. Through his training, he was chosen to be the living weapon known as the Iron Fist, which allows him to channel his chi energy into his fists. It was the fourth Marvel-Netflix series to be released. The show was preceded by “Daredevil,” “Jessica Jones,” and “Luke Cage.” All four main characters then teamed up for “The Defenders” event series, which debuted on Netflix in August.
Season 2 will also see Raven Metzner take over as showrunner from Scott Buck, who left “Iron Fist” to work on the Marvel-ABC series “Inhumans.”
Alice Eve Talks About Starring in and Producing Her Brother’s Film ‘Bees Make Honey’
“Bees Make Honey,” the stylish debut from writer/director Jack Eve, is a true family affair. His sister Alice Eve (“Star Trek: Into Darkness,” “Black Mirror”) headlines the cast, while their father, Trevor Eve (“Troy”), is featured in a supporting role. Pic mixes 1930s period decor with modern music, flashy photography and energetic editing in a dark comedy. Alice Eve spoke with Variety about her work on “Bees Make Honey.”
How did “Bees Make Honey” originate?
It was born out of my brother’s wild imagination and his love for movies in general. He knows me very well, and knew I’d be well suited to the part. There are bits that are certainly inspired by films we’ve loved, but this is his creation.
What was it like working with your brother considering that it was his feature debut, and you’re one of the producers?
My focus was on giving exactly the performance that he desired to see on screen, and being there for him if he needed anything from a creative standpoint. And as a producer, I was trying to keep the film moving along as efficiently as possible.
Your character in “Bees Make Honey” is fascinating because you play off of the inherently theatrical qualities of the narrative, and yet there’s still a sense of modernity. What was that like for you as an actress?
It was exciting! My greatest joy in life comes from entertaining other people, and making them happy. My character grounds the narrative, especially when it gets stylistically crazy. I’m a big believer in truth, so it’s always about finding the truth in any given scene or moment that appeals to me as an actress.
When did you first get interested in acting? Do you have any favorite films, or movies that have inspired you?
I’m a huge fan of classic cinema, and both of my parents are actors, so it was incredible to have dinnertime conversations about the craft and business, as I was definitely interested early on. I love “Chinatown,” and Faye Dunaway is one of my favorite actresses. I could watch Marilyn Monroe or Carole Lombard any day of the week, and I remember David Lean’s “Summertime” with Katharine Hepburn making a big impression on me when I was younger.
Considering that you’re one of the producers of “Bees Make Honey,” what was the biggest challenge?
We made the film for a half a million pounds [around $664,000], and thanks to an extremely dedicated and passionate crew, we squeezed every dollar for all its worth. There was a lot of blood, sweat and tears on this production, and it was a true collaborative journey to get it made. And when you work with family, emotions are involved and run high, and you don’t want to disappoint anyone. There was a belief in each other that was required. My brother loved everyone on the crew, and nobody got paid their full quote. It’s a labor of love.
“I love those badass women from times of yore,” says Alice Eve over the phone from her home in Los Angeles. “I like the ones battling the elements. I think that’s pretty cool.”
With this in mind, it’s not surprising that the English actress enjoyed her most recent role in The Stolen, a Western adventure about a women’s thrilling journey to find her kidnapped son.
Eve plays Charlotte Lockton, the wife of a wealthy landowner in 1860s New Zealand, whose happy life is shattered when an intruder murders her husband and makes off with their one-year-old baby. Unhappy with the efforts of local police, Lockton takes it upon herself to track down her child, meeting prostitutes, ex-convicts and Maori warriors along the way. Directed by Niall Johnson, The Stolen also stars Jack Davenport of Kingsman: The Secret Service fame and Graham McTavish from The Hobbit.“It really appealed to me as a story,” says Eve, the 35-year-old star of Star Trek: Into the Darkness. “The simple idea that a woman goes to a new world and not only has her husband taken, but loses her child too. I thought that was a really extreme thing for someone to go through.”
Needless to say, her character, who has to cross the plains of New Zealand alone in the film, lived up to Eve’s feminist expectations. And one of the locations was the Antipodes Islands, a cluster of volcanic rocks five hundred miles south of New Zealand, so there were plenty of chances to battle against the elements. The area is so remote that the islands have no indigenous mammals, only birds.
Eve regales stories of “daily disasters” as a result of filming in the wilderness in winter. “I found it hard with a crew so I can only imagine what it would have been like 170 years ago.” That didn’t stop her from getting stuck in, however, which included doing her own stunts. After successfully filming a scene on a rearing horse, she pleaded with the director to let her do the final take in which her character gallops down a beach into the distance. It was not to be: “They wanted a stunt girl to do it and I was just so devastated that I had a little cry,” she admits with a laugh. “Anyway, they were right in the end because when I practised the horse got out from under me.”As the daughter of the actors Trevor Eve and Sharon Maughan, Alice Eve grew up between England and the US, briefly attending the same school as Paris Hilton in LA. She returned to the UK when she was 12 and was sent to Bedales boarding-school where she had her first taste of acting as Olivia in Twelfth Night.
After that came Oxford at the insistence of her father who wanted her to go to university before running back to LA for auditions. She read English at St Catherine’s (her dissertation was on Wordsworth) before bagging a part in Richard Eyre’s film Stage Beauty in 2004. Since then, her myriad of roles have included Sex and the City 2, Black Mirror and the third Men in Black movie.
While acting has taken her all over the world, this was her first time in New Zealand and she was beguiled by both the magical landscape and the country’s attitudes towards women.
Citing the recent appointment of Jacinda Ardern, the country’s new female Labour Prime Minister, Eve explains that while there people gave her a certain “look in the eye” that made her feel like “what I brought to the table mattered, not my gender”.
“It was one of the first countries to give all women the vote in 1893 and I found there to be very little gender divide in terms of attitudes and their approach to daily life. There don’t seem to be the same problems there that we encounter in Europe and the West.”One of her theories for this is that, unlike the predominately married and pregnant women who travelled to America on the Mayflower, the women who immigrated to New Zealand were nearly exclusively single. “I think that made a big difference to the founding of the country. These single women had to fight their own fight.”
This is a particularly poignant observation in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein and Westminster sexual harassment scandals that have dominated the news in recent weeks. Has she had any experience of sexism in her line of work?
“No, I was not subjected to anything like that, but I think it’s reprehensible for what [Harvey Weinstein] has done and horrible and disgusting to read about.”
However, she thinks that the swell of anger from women around the world is down to “centuries of repression” and, crucially, the gender pay gap. “It’s not great that we’re not paid the same, is it? Pay inequality seems to be across the board… which is really demoralising for the collective.”
While Eve doesn’t want to get bogged down in “boring” discussions about pay within the film industry but she does think that things are changing. Casting directors are more willing to talk about it. She also has a “badass” female manager (is there a theme here?) who went to Harvard Law and fights her corner.
Maybe this shift is why Eve ultimately feels optimistic. “I can’t change anything personally but we should remain hopeful, open and honest, like you should about everything life.”
Agatha Christie’s Ordeal by Innocence Goes Darker for TV
It’s an English-country-house suspense thriller in the time-honored tradition,” Bill Nighy says of Ordeal by Innocence, a three-part television adaptation of Agatha Christie’s novel, following last year’s The Witness for the Prosecution and 2015’s And Then There Were None. It will appear this Christmas on the BBC in the U.K. and early next year on Amazon in the U.S. The story is set at Christmastime, in 1954, and Nighy stars as Leo Argyll, a gentleman and an amateur Egyptologist. Nighy was first attracted to the project by, he explains, the “brilliant script, the director, the cast, and the period, and I’m keen on the genre generally.” He continues: “A large part of its appeal was the period—how much our relationships and social structures have changed, and the nostalgia and curiosity we all feel for what happened 60 or 70 years ago.”
Co-starring is Anna Chancellor as Rachel Argyll, a perfect wife to Leo and mother to five adopted children, who is brutally murdered. “It’s a rather cruel Christie for Christmas,” says writer Sarah Phelps. “A nice murder, twisted deviance, and savagery—it makes you realize you quite like your own family!”
“It’s about what kills her, not who,” Phelps says, adding that “women had become weaponized postwar—they were what we’d been fighting for, the perfect hearth, home, family . . . but Rachel kept a dark secret.” Executive producer James Prichard, Christie’s great-grandson, echoes Phelps: “Everything’s perfect on top, but underneath the water everything is chaos. What I love is that it is really subversive, an incredibly screwed-up family at Christmas.” Nighy concurs: “All families have their ups and downs, but this one, bloomin’ hell!”
Director Sandra Goldbacher was looking for “an All About Eve tone, darkly glittering old-style glamour and snappy one-liners.” As for the viewers, Nighy says, “I have a vision of every family around their TV arguing about who’s done it, because the audience will confidently suspect all the characters at some time during the show.” A perfect Christmas feast, then, and there are six more in the pipeline.