“It’s Going to Be Mad”: Anya Taylor-Joy Gets Back to Work
Early in her career, Anya Taylor-Joy was quick to get labeled a “scream queen,” the cliché used to describe a female actor whose profession is peril. And while it’s true that the 24-year-old performer’s 2015 debut, The Witch, was a bloodcurdling nightmare—ditto for her follow-ups Morgan and Split—Taylor-Joy, with her ferocious intensity and spell-binding vulnerability, has elevated herself above the trappings of any single genre. This year alone, Taylor-Joy has appeared as the title character in Autumn de Wilde’s modernized adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma, will play a Russian mystic in the comic-book-inspired The New Mutants, and was set to make her return to horror in Edgar Wright’s pandemic-delayed Last Night in Soho. Next month, she’ll carry The Queen’s Gambit, a seven-episode miniseries based on Walter Tevis’s 1983 novel about Beth Harmon, an orphan who rises to become a chess grandmaster while struggling with addiction. Just before she was set to film her next role in the Viking saga The Northman (a reunion with The Witch director Robert Eggers), Taylor-Joy connected with her friend, the actor George MacKay, to discuss, among other things, growing up, playing chess, and battling demons.
GEORGE MACKAY: How are you doing?
ANYA TAYLOR-JOY: I’ve just moved into an isolation house to get back to work. There are growing pains for everybody, but we’re all figuring out how to keep each other safe. It’s going to be an adventure.
MACKAY: I got a sneak peek of The Queen’s Gambit, and when I say sneak peek, I watched the whole series, which I absolutely loved. What are some of the things you learned from doing that show?
TAYLOR-JOY: I’m usually very instinctive. I don’t like to prepare too much. You, however, really prepare, and the first time we worked together, that intimidated me a bit. Playing Beth, I had to do a lot more of that, because when you’re charting somebody from the ages of 15 to 21, you have to be really aware of what she experienced: “Has she ever liked a boy? Does that change the way she interacts with men now? Has she experienced a maternal figure in her life?” And we were jumping around a lot, too. We’d shoot parts of episodes three, five, and two, all in one day, and I’d be changing my wig and trying to play being 15, and then jump forward to being 21, and then being 19, so I had to keep a bit more of a tally of where I was at in this character’s life story.
MACKAY: There is something so evocative about the time period it’s set in.
TAYLOR-JOY: The first music I fell in love with was from the ’60s. I’ve always been very drawn to that time period. It was a seismic moment. People were really shaking things up. And I think what’s interesting about Beth is that she’s weirdly out of it in this strange way. She’s not necessarily modern. Women are still not yet equal, which is ridiculous, but in the ’60s we certainly weren’t. Beth doesn’t see that. She is so deeply understanding of her own genius that she doesn’t understand why anybody would ever think that her being a girl makes her less than, which is a wonderful way to interact with the world, but I had to step back from the idea that I had of the ’60s and let her be this odd little space creature.
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Photoshoots & Portraits > Photoshoots from 2019 > The Laterals
Anya Taylor-Joy’s acting career is the embodiment of a meteoric rise in the making; the English-Argentine actor has been busy furrowing her own path in Hollywood. Most of her work has involved critically acclaimed films—whether as a virginal Puritan teen (The Witch) , or a frigid popular girl from Connecticut (Thoroughbreds), or, most recently, a soul-sword carrying mutant (The New Mutants). At only 24-years-old, Anya has quickly become one of the most recognizable faces in young Hollywood.
However, this impressive acting resume comes as no surprise to anyone who has worked with her. On-screen, her acting is gripping; she has a hauntingly beautiful, wide-eyed gaze that draws you in as she manifests her character with a powerful, but respectful, finesse. It also helps that she is whip-smart but endearingly self-deprecating, deeply curious and fiercely committed to her craft, all the while carrying the gravitas and self-awareness of a woman almost twice her age.
Here, we chat with Anya about her transnational upbringing in a large family, her newfound thoughts on self-care and its essential role in her creativity, and how she conquers the fears surrounding her inevitable rise in fame.
You were born in Miami, moved to Argentina until you were six, and then moved to London. How do you think your transnational upbringing has shaped your identity as an adult and as an actor?
As a child, I found it very unsettling because I felt like I didn’t fit in anywhere, but I do think that that kind of brought about the intense desire to find a place where I did fit in. So when I stepped onto the set of The Witch the first day, I got this feeling of, “Oh my god. I made it. This is where I fit in, and this is the country kind of that I belong to. I belong to film sets. That’s where I’m supposed to be.”
I also think it’s kind of helpful because I’m used to being transient. I don’t have a set dictation of home. Home can be anywhere. It’s wherever the people that I love are, and also wherever I’m laying my head for the evening. That just feels quite comforting. It’s the fact that I’m carrying home around with me rather than it being a set place.
That being said, I feel that whenever I go home to Argentina, or I come back to London, or go to where I’ve made my adult spiritual home in New York. But I can also feel that in Barcelona. It’s just a feeling that you’re surrounded by people that love you, and know you, and understand you as an individual, and that to me is home, rather than a cultural identity.
I read that you’re the youngest of six kids. What was that like? What was that like growing up in such a big family, and what were you like growing up?
I was still as much of a psycho as I am now! It’s wonderful. I feel very lucky that I got to experience the way that I was brought up in a big family, while also having the attention of an only child at the same time, because my siblings are so much older than me.
Growing up they always called me the “Duracell Bunny” and my two younger siblings would joke around and be like, “Where the hell is the off button? How do we shut you up? How do we stop the singing and acting all the time?”
At the beginning of my acting career I think it was a bit weird, because none of my siblings are in an artistic field, so I don’t think they really knew what I was doing. But now they’re all starting to and it’s really cute. We have a big family WhatsApp group, and it’s just really sweet to get a picture message of all of your family in three different countries going to watch your film. It’s nice to have a five-person strong army behind you, and then they have all of their kids so our clan is huge. I think we buy up a decent amount of box office seats.
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Kevin McCarthy spoke with Maisie Williams, Anya Taylor-Joy, Charlie Heaton, Blu Hunt, Alice Braga, Henry Zaga and director Josh Boone about “The New Mutants”.
Psychological horror film stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie, and Matt Smith.
Director Edgar Wright has announced on Twitter that his new movie, Last Night in Soho, will now be released on April 23, 2021. The film was previously set for release in September of this year.
“Haunted by someone else’s past, but we’ll see you in the future…” Wright wrote. “It’s true, Last Night in Soho is not quite finished yet due to Covid-19. But, I’m excited for you all to experience it, at a big screen near you, on April 23, 2021.”
Wright’s follow-up to his 2017 hit heist movie Baby Driver is a psychological horror film which stars Anya Taylor-Joy, Thomasin McKenzie, Matt Smith, Michael Ajao, Synnøve Karlsen, Diana Rigg, Terence Stamp, and Rita Tushingham. Wright wrote the screenplay with Krysty Wilson-Cairns.
Wright announced on Twitter last week that his 2010 film Scott Pilgrim vs. the World would be returning to cinemas when it was safe for the film to be seen. The director revealed that “we were going to do this in August, but make no mistake, this will happen soon. #ScottPilgrim back on the big screen thanks to @DolbyCinema & @UniversalPics. Can’t wait.”
Source: Entertainment Weekly
Hollywood is now completely stopped at the level of production. However, the processes before and after are kept on the go as they can be performed more easily through electronic means. ‘Doctor Strange and the Multiverse of Madness’ has continued its pre-production without problems and for now maintains its goal of starting to shoot in June, it remains to be seen if his release date is affected by having to wait for the previous movie of the UCM is to premiere.
Meanwhile, George Miller also is working on the first steps of his next film, the spin-off of ‘Mad Max’, ‘Furiousa’. The director has been having meetings via Skype with several people for the role, among which Variey stands out to Anya Taylor-Joy.
The actress, born in the united States but with family influences of England and Argentina (he speaks Spanish perfectly), has a promising career ahead with a few roles he has had in Hollywood. He made his debut in the horror movie ‘The Witch’ (also the first film by director Robert Eggers with another promising career), then made the leap to ‘Multiple’ and ‘Glass’, sharing house with James McAvoy, and the coronavirus has affected two of their latest releases, one of them ‘Emma’, an adaptation of a novel by Jane Austen, and the eternally damned ‘The new mutants’, which was delayed for the fifth time a few weeks ago. He has also worked with Edgar Wright (‘Baby Driver’) in ‘Last night in Soho’, which is now in post-production.
Hollywood in standby
The rest of Hollywood is standing. ‘Mission Impossible 7’ had to leave Italy, a country that has a great importance in the movie, so that it is difficult to change the location in these moments. ‘Matrix 4’ had finished filming in San Francisco and was going to start shooting in Berlin. ‘The Batman’ had nearly seven weeks filming in London. ‘Red Notice’, for his part, had been in production in Atlanta for two weeks. It is more than likely that these three major projects to suffer delays in their release dates original.
Source: Code List
ComingSoon.net had the opportunity to chat with star Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch, Split, The New Mutants) about Focus Features’ Emma, the adaptation of the Jane Austen classic on misguided matchmaking in the 1800’s English countryside. You can check out the interview below and order your copy of the movie here!
Jane Austen’s beloved comedy about finding your equal and earning your happy ending is reimagined in this delicious new film adaptation of Emma. Handsome, clever, and rich, Emma Woodhouse (Taylor-Joy) is a restless queen bee without rivals in her sleepy little town. In this glittering satire of social class and the pain of growing up, Emma must adventure through misguided matches and romantic missteps to find the love that has been there all along.
In addition Taylor-Joy, the cast includes Bill Nighy (Their Finest), Miranda Hart (Spy), The Cure for Wellness‘ Mia Goth, The Crown‘s Josh O’Connor, Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald‘s Callum Turner, Krypton‘s Rupert Graves, Game of Thrones‘ Gemma Whelan, In Darkness‘ Amber Anderson and Sex Education‘s Tanya Reynolds.
The Jane Austen novel was first published in 1815, a comedy of manners focusing on Emma Woodhouse, who can’t help herself from constantly meddling in the love affairs of others.
The film also marks the feature debut for director Autumn de Wilde, who is known primarily for her work in music videos for artists including Beck and Death Cab for Cutie. The Luminaries author Eleanor Catton wrote the script. Catton serves as the executive producer on the small screen adaptation of her award-winning novel.
Stepping into the shoes of Jane Austen’s timeless antiheroine Emma in a new screen adaptation, the actor speaks to us about why she’s never compromised for less.
Oscillating effortlessly between twisted gothic thrillers and refined period dramas, Anya Taylor-Joy has mapped out an unconventional career rooted in escapism. Now stepping into the shoes of Jane Austen’s timeless antiheroine Emma in a new screen adaptation, the actor speaks to us about why she’ s never compromised for less.
Within the first five minutes of meeting, Anya Taylor-Joy is excitedly telling me about the best first date she’s ever been on. “Our lunch turned into six, seven hours of us wandering around antique shops and just telling each other our entire life story.” She recalls the story animatedly, her stupendously large eyes trained on mine. “We fell in love! It was basically the best first date I’ve ever had.” I’m currently sat with the actress in the practically sub-zero temperatures of a studio’s storage room in the depths of south London. An eerie array of prop oddities including mannequin torsos and comically jumbo-sized clocks loom ominously in the shadows, as well as one boisterously orange vintage sofa – where eventually all her lithe, deer-like limbs fold into when we sit down for a chat. The “date” in question was her first ever work meeting with Autumn de Wilde, an esteemed fashion photographer and director who has just helmed the latest screen adaptation of Jane Austen’s iconic 19th-century set novel, Emma – in which Taylor-Joy stars in the titular role. It is a sprightly, humorous wedge of a film, offering up sheer screen escapism and swoon-worthy shows of romance — think strawberries and champagne, beguiling glances over group picnics, and petticoats abound — and boasting a number of fantastic performances from an ensemble cast made up of the crème de la crème of British talent, or as Taylor-Joy calls them, the “merry little gang” of Johnny Flynn, Mia Goth, Josh O’Connor, Callum Turner, Bill Nighy and Miranda Hart. What you see on screen is essentially what you get: the on-screen chemistry between everyone is real. Mia Goth is one of Taylor-Joy’s IRL best friends. And she snickers gleefully “it was so much fun to argue with Johnny Flynn,” the singer and actor who plays her bickering love interest. They’re all active on a group chat called ‘MA’ whose avatar is an emoji of the head exploding, where they “continually tell each other jokes and write poetry.” At its crux, Emma is about a spoilt “anti-heroine” who meddles in the lives of others around her, and plays matchmaker to less than favourable results for all those involved. “Emma is acting from a place of fear a lot of the time,” Taylor-Joy surmises. “A lot of her comments that come out are because she’s deeply lonely and bored, and she also doesn’t know any better. She’s grown up in a place of privilege where she believes that she’s truly being kind in trying to improve people, but I wanted people to understand where she was coming from when she does say something mean. I think that in a world that’s very big on cancel culture at the minute, it’s really nice to have a story on redemption, and by the end of the film Emma understands that morally she prefers to be around good people that treat each other kindly, rather than the people that are deceitful and happen to be of the right class.”
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BREAKING: Robert Eggers, the director behind the critically acclaimed horror film, The Witch, has potentially assembled a starry cast for his latest project, The Northman, set up at New Regency. Oscar-winner Nicole Kidman, Alexander Skarsgård, The Witch’s Anya Taylor-Joy, Bill Skarsgård, and Oscar nominee Willem Dafoe are in talks to star this film, which is being produced by Lars Knudsen (Hereditary, Midsommar).
The pic is described as Viking revenge saga set in Iceland at the turn of the 10th century. Eggers penned the screenplay with Icelandic poet and novelist, Sjón.
New Regency co-financed Eggers’ soon-to-be-released ghost drama The Lighthouse, also starring Dafoe as well as Robert Pattinson. The black and white feature was named best movie at Cannes’ Critics Week and Directors’ Fortnight by the International Federation of Film Critics.
During a recent appearance at Deadline’s The Contenders London, Eggers talked about how he and his brother Max were inspired by a true story of a 19th-century lighthouse in Wales where an older man and younger man are trapped due to a storm
“With the two characters, I realized it could be a story about identity,” remarked Eggers.
The Lighthouse will hit theaters Oct. 18.
Eggers is repped by WME.
Netflix has put out an order for a new limited series, “The Queen’s Gambit,” starring Anya Taylor-Joy, Variety has learned.
Based on Walter Tevis’s 1983 novel of the same name, the six-episode show will be set during the Cold War era and will follow orphan chess prodigy Beth Harmon (Taylor-Joy) from the age of eight to twenty-two, as she struggles with addiction in a quest to become the greatest chess player in the world.
Two-time Oscar nominee Scott Frank, who created the Netflix show “Godless” and wrote the screenplay for the 2017 movie “Logan,” will serve as writer, director, and executive producer on the series. “The Talented Mr Ripley” producer William Horberg will executive produce, alongside Allan Scott who will co-write the show.
Taylor-Joy, who is best known for playing Casey Cooke in M. Night Shyamalan’s “Glass” and “Split,” is repped by CAA, Troika, and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson. In 2015, she starred in the chilling horror film “The Witch.”
A film adaptation of “The Queen’s Gambit” was in the works in 2007, with Heath Ledger set to make his directorial debut and Ellen Page in line to star. However, the project was shelved after Ledger’s death in January, 2008.
Tevis’s other novels include “The Man Who Fell To Earth,” which has been adapted for both film and television, “The Hustler,” which was adapted into the 1961 movie starring Paul Newman and Jackie Gleason, and its sequel “The Color Of Money,” which was lossely adapted for the big screen in 1986 by Martin Scorsese.
Children of the ’80s are chomping at the bit for Netflix’s forthcoming Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance — and the all-star voice cast will add fuel to their excitement. Taron Egerton (the Kingsman films), Anya Taylor-Joy (The Witch) and Nathalie Emmanuel (Game of Thrones) have been set as respective Gefling heroes Rian, Brea and Deet, and other while actors including Helena Bonham-Carter, Toby Jones, Alicia Vikander, Simon Pegg, Andy Samberg also lend their voices to the return of Jim Henson’s classic that will launch globally in 2019.
The Dark Crystal: Age of Resistance is based on Henson’s 1982 feature The Dark Crystal. The series tells a new epic story, set many years before the events of the movie and realized using classic puppetry with cutting-edge visual effects. We find that the world of Thra is dying. At the heart of Thra is the Crystal of Truth, a source of untold power. But it is damaged, corrupted by the evil Skeksis, and a sickness spreads across the land. When three Gelflings uncover the horrific truth behind the power of the Skeksis, an adventure unfolds as the fires of rebellion are lit and an epic battle for the planet begins.
Also Jjoining the voice cast are Caitriona Balfe (Outlander), Harris Dickinson (the forthcoming Maleficent 2), Natalie Dormer (Game of Thrones), Eddie Izzard (Ocean’s Thirteen), Theo James (the Divergent series), Shazad Latif (Star Trek: Discovery), Gugu Mbatha-Raw (The Cloverfield Paradox) and Mark Strong (Kingsman). The Skeksis & Mystics will be voiced by Harvey Fierstein (Torch Song), Mark Hamill (Star Wars), Ralph Ineson (Game of Thrones), Jason Isaacs (Star Trek: Discovery), Keegan-Michael Key (Key and Peele), Ólafur Darri Ólafsson (True Detective), Simon Pegg (the Mission: Impossible franchise), and Andy Samberg (Brooklyn Nine-Nine). Aughra will be voiced by Donna Kimball (The Happytime Murders). Additional characters will also be voiced by puppeteers from the production, including Alice Dinnean, Louise Gold, Neil Sterenberg and Victor Yerrid.