Lily James clutched onto Daphne Du Maurier’s novel Rebecca “like a lifeline” while filming the movie adaptation because she wasn’t brave enough to trust her own instincts.In Ben Wheatley’s upcoming adaptation of du Maurier’s novel, the Brit…
Lily James clutched onto Daphne Du Maurier’s novel Rebecca “like a lifeline” while filming the movie adaptation because she wasn’t brave enough to trust her own instincts.
In Ben Wheatley’s upcoming adaptation of du Maurier’s novel, the British actress portrays Mrs. de Winter, the second wife of Armie Hammer’s Maxim, who is forced to live in the shadow of his dead first wife, Rebecca.
In an interview with AnOther magazine, James confessed that she must have annoyed Wheatley because she couldn’t let the original text go.
“I think I was really annoying because I love that book so much. I clutched to it like a lifeline and wasn’t brave enough for a while to just let it go and say, ‘This is a new version,’” she recalled. “I was like that with (TV miniseries) War and Peace, too. I’m a bit of a control freak and I don’t trust myself that much, so if there’s something there saying how it should be, I trust that rather than myself, which was a bit difficult. But then I just have to allow myself to really inhabit it.”
For example, James was initially concerned about the decision to put her character in Chanel because de Winter was meant to be “unfashionable” in the novel, and costumes play a big part in her preparation for a role.
“When I’m filming, the first costume fitting is often where I start understanding how the character moves and stands – their internal rhythm,” the 30-year-old shared. “I’m definitely a physical, sensual person. I like photoshoots – I love shapes and movement. How I move my body makes me feel something.”
James, who admitted she had “probably done too many literary heroines”, has her eyes set on moving to Los Angeles next to expand her options.
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Anya Taylor-Joy relied upon her corset to help her get into the mindset of her character in Emma.The Split actress portrays upper-class wannabe matchmaker Emma Woodhouse in Autumn de Wilde’s new adaptation of Jane Austen’s classic novel Emma, which…
Anya Taylor-Joy relied upon her corset to help her get into the mindset of her character in Emma.
The Split actress portrays upper-class wannabe matchmaker Emma Woodhouse in Autumn de Wilde’s new adaptation of Jane Austen’s classic novel Emma, which is set in the Georgian Regency era.
The 23-year-old had to wear corsets underneath the elaborate period costumes, and she admitted to U.S. Harper’s Bazaar magazine that getting laced into the restrictive garment at the start of every shoot day helped her channel Emma.
“It was so important to me to get it right because I was so possessed by Emma,” she said. “About two weeks in, I actually started relying on my corset to help me get the work done. The second my corset was put on, I was like, ‘I know what I’m doing. I’ve got this. It’s all going to be fine.’ I just had to be laced in first.”
When asked if she would occasionally wear sneakers to give her feet a break during close-up shots, Taylor-Joy insists both her and de Wilde were strict about staying in costume for the whole shoot.
“Not ever. I would never, could never. Autumn and I are not those sorts of people,” the star continued. “I think the most lenient I ever got was allowing my corset to be loosened a little bit. If I was in severe pain, then we would loosen it. But it was all authentic.”
De Wilde flew to New York to meet with Taylor-Joy and the actress “instantly fell in love with her”. Yet, she also was daunted about appearing in Emma because the character is so tricky to define.
“I thought, ‘Here is a character that is so difficult to pin down. Her emotions are flitting around so quickly. You can’t decide whether she’s an entitled princess or she’s amazing,’” she shared. “The idea of getting to try and figure out how to play a character that changes on a switch really appealed to me.”
Emma is in cinemas now.
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