Beanie Feldstein worked part-time in a shop in Wolverhampton, England to try and nail her accent for How to Build a Girl.
The 26-year-old actress stars in the upcoming movie, based on the book of the same name by British author Caitlin Moran, as teenager Johanna Morrigan, a working class aspiring writer from Wolverhampton, England who becomes a popular music journalist.
However, Feldstein was concerned that she wasn’t a good fit for the role after she met with Moran and director Coky Giedroyc in London to explore possible sites for filming.
“I called my mom on the way home and said, ‘I don’t know if I’ll get this. It’s such a British story and an experience of a working-class girl in the Midlands, and if they don’t want me for it, I completely understand that,'” she told Variety.
She was offered the role and immediately accepted, and months after the initial meeting, she began working part-time in a shop that had “an end-of-the-world feeling” in Wolverhampton, where Moran is from, to help her nail the regional accent.
And Feldstein was full of praise for the 45-year-old journalist for writing such a candid semi-autobiographical story.
“She gives us all, but specifically teenage girls, permission to make mistakes. And for those mistakes to be folded into your personhood. I loved that,” she shared. “Caitlin’s brilliance is that she wants everyone to do that for themselves. It’s easier to forgive other people, but not yourself. You are not defined by those phases, but they do make you stronger.”
How to Build a Girl, which also stars Alfie Allen, Emma Thompson, and Paddy Considine, will be released on video-on-demand in the U.S. on 8 May.
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