Five years ago, a virtually unknown stage and TV actress from California auditioned for a play that Al Pacino was directing and starring in. The play was Salome, written by Oscar Wilde, and the actress was Jessica Chastain. A film was made of the stage production, and within three years Chastain had been nominated for two Oscars.
Now Pacino has made a documentary about the making of Salome – called Wilde Salome – and they are both available for the first time to British audiences.
“This is really special to me”, says Chastain. “This is my first film role, and this is the first time anyone ever really believed in me. Before I got this role I could rarely even get film auditions”.
This is really special to me. This is my first film role, and this is the first time anyone ever really believed in me. Before I got this role I could rarely even get film auditions.
“I got cast in the play first, and we did that, and then Al wanted to make the play into a movie in Los Angeles – because when Al Pacino does a play, everyone wants to see him – and then that was an incredible showcase for me. The audience would be scratching their heads and saying, ‘Who’s that red-headed girl with Al playing Salome?'”
Wilde’s play, originally written in French in 1891, is a tragedy based upon the Biblical account of the Tetrarch Herod (played by Pacino), who gave his stepdaughter Salome the head of John the Baptist in return for her dancing for him.
The original Salome was supposed to be about 16-years-old but Chastain, who was 32 at the time, does not think that her being twice Salome’s age mattered in the casting. She said: “The play still shows the themes – it’s a woman discovering her sexuality and trying to test its boundaries. It was a very dark, different play for Wilde to write compared to his other comedies.
Today I’ve updated our website with a page dedicated to 2011 film The Debt, and as I did with the other (few) career pages, uploaded a lot of related videos to our archive. Clips, behind-the-scenes, and related interviews can now be found, and there’s more transcribed interviews about the film needing to be added. Follow the image links below to view all videos added:
Jessica was looking incredible today wearing a DSquared dress while attended a “The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby” photocall in San Sebastian Festival. I have uploaded over 200 HQ pictures, check it:
Our video archive was updated with some interviews Jessica did this month, including red carpet ones from yesterday’s Salome premiere. Click on the images below to see the latest updates.
Jessica is currently in Spain, attending the San Sebastian Film Festival. Later today, there will be a screening of The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby. Check the first pictures added in our gallery.