THIS MUST BE THE PLACE
Interview with Eve Hewson (Mary)
Who is Mary?
Mary is a 16 year old Goth and Cheyenne's best friend. She's a dark old soul
from a broken family -
her brother's left and her mother's lost her mind and kind of forgotten about
her. Cheyenne takes
her in and takes care of her. They're friends and form sort of a tribe together.
She's a huge fan of his.
They confide in each other. He's the one who knows all her secrets.
Does he make it known to her what his intentions are when he leaves?
Mary just finds out that his father is dying when he leaves. She thinks he will
go and then come back.
Then after a while when he doesn't come back, she feels like he's abandoning
her, just like her
What was your reaction to the character? How much work did you have to do to
The script was so detailed and precise. To create the character was the easy
part; there were so
many layers right there on the page. But Mary is so dark and has really heavy
scenes. I knew that it
would take a lot of work to get under the skin and understand where all that
pain came from. The
music that I listened to helped with that. I listened to The Cure, Talking
Heads. All of their lyrics gave
me an insight into what Mary was feeling and what was going on in her head.
I assume you don't look like this in real life?
No - they dyed my hair and extensions, gave me rings and ripped tights - though
I do wear ripped
tights in real life! The costume and the hair and make-up helped a lot with
finding the character. I
feel darker and closed off which is obviously what she's trying to do, putting
up a barrier. I couldn't
feel like Mary if I was wearing my own clothes.
How have you found working with Paolo Sorrentino?
I watched Il Divo and it's pretty heavy and intense. Everything is really
controlled and precise and
you'd think working with Paolo would be really scary. But he's the most gentle
human being I've
ever met. Everything's so calm on set, he knows exactly what he wants and he
takes his time.
There's no fuss or tension. He knows exactly what he's doing. It's kind of a
And with Sean Penn?
I'd never met Sean before pre-production. I was pretty intimidated because of
his body of work and
his level of intensity. I wasn't sure how that would translate into real life.
But he's been fantastic and
very friendly. It was great and working with him was an education in itself.
Can you tell us about Frances McDormand and the character she plays?
Frances plays Jane, Cheyenne's wife. They nurture Mary and Jane is a positive
female influence in
her life. She adores their relationship, she supports their friendship and takes
care of Mary in her
own way. Frances and Sean work very differently, so it was interesting to see
how they work in a
You're primarily involved in the Dublin portion of the shoot. How has that been?
I grew up in Dublin. I moved to New York for school and then I moved to LA. And
now I'm back here
to make a film. It's actually been very comforting as I know exactly where I'm
going and I'm staying
at home - it's helped me feel comfortable on set.
Did you know how to skateboard before this film?
I'd never skateboarded before. I told a little white lie in my audition - Paolo
asked 'can you
skateboard?' and I said 'yeah sure, it's easy,' which is completely untrue! So
they had to get me a
coach, who worked with me for a couple of weeks, trying to get some tricks down
and get me
comfortable on the board. I was a bit wobbly at the start. I was wearing helmets
- I looked like a
turtle riding around Central Park, it was very embarrassing. But I was
eventually weaned off the pads
and I can properly skateboard now.
How would you describe the film?
I don't think you can categorise it easily. It's a drama but has a lot of comedy
in it too. It's unique and
extraordinary. It's hard to define.
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