As the title reads, Ain’t It Cool News recently chatted with Mary about her upcoming film, Alex of Venice. Below are some highlights from the interview, and be sure to click on the link above to read the full Q&A:
With this film, when you first read this script, what was it about Alex that jumped out at you? Was there an aspect to her life or the upheaval that happens to it that made you think, “I’ve seen that before,” or “I know someone that’s happened to”?
MEW: I think in general, the complexity of the role was really exciting to me and the reliability of it. I loved the fact that you get to see her with her sister and her husband and her father and her son, and you get to see the full spectrum of relationships and how she handles herself in each one. I am really drawn to characters who are trying to be better people and in every scene are striving to figure out what it is about their lives that isn’t working and how they can grow from that and move on and become better. So that was something that really spoke to me about this role, too, is you feel like all the way through the end she’s trying to figure out how to do this. How do I be a good sister? How do I be a good mom? How do I be a good daughter? How do I be a good wife? And I think that that is something for me that is incredibly relatable and universal.
I heard about these crazy long takes that he did, too. How did you like that experience?
MEW: I loved that. I absolutely loved getting to play. A lot of times he let the camera play out and see what happens, and other times he would stoke the fire. He would go behind the camera and he would just shout stuff out: “Tell her you love her. Tell her you can’t stand her anymore. Tell her you’re sick of her,” just to switch things up and see what happens. I loved that. I really loved that energy when you don’t know what’s going to happen in a scene and if something brilliant can come about that you never expected. I love that.
Don Johnson is phenomenal in this. I’ve seen him in quite a few things in the last few years, but usually they bring him in just for the vibe or comic relief. But here, he’s actually digging in, and just eating this thing whole. What did you learn from him just watching him work and embody this this character?
MEW: He’s a really inspiring person, because he’s just so committed as an actor. He came to it and hit the ground running in terms of wanting this character to feel authentic and doing whatever he could to get it there. He’s maybe not synonymous with a being serious actor, because he’s known for “Miami Vice” and other things, but I think when you go back to the beginning of his career, he was in acting school and alongside really serious actors. That’s always been where his heart lies. To me, I always loved watching him. And I really felt like I was getting to act along side somebody who was the real deal, who has seen a lot as an actor, and experienced a lot, and is someone I can really learn from.