In Woman Walks Ahead, the period drama from director Susanna White that is available now on DIRECTV and opens in theaters on June 29, Jessica Chastain plays 19th century painter Catherine Weldon, who travels to North Dakota to paint a portrait of Chief Sitting Bull.
A few days ago an exclusive clip was released by A24, in which Catherine is accused of being a spy by an US Army officer.
Our gallery was also updated with some brand new promotional images. Check it:
Woman Walks Ahead (2017) > Production Stills
Earlier today Jessica Chastain joined to Penelope Cruz, Marion Cotillard, Lupita Nyong’o and Fan Bingbing at the 2018 Cannes Film Festival to promote their upcoming spy thriller 355. Alongside director Simon?Kinberg they attended a presentation at the Majestic Hotel — easily the most glamorous event thus far at this year’s otherwise sleepy Cannes. Festival glitz typically takes place on a red carpet and involves a finished film. Such was not the case with the 355 presentation, whose collective star power easily eclipsed any other event of the festival to date.
Adding to the intrigue, the five women were transported by boat to a photo op near the famed Hotel du Cap. After the presentation, Chastain, who is producing the film, headed to a lunch reception at the Majestic, sponsored by The Hollywood Reporter and DirecTV on the Grey Goose Terrace.
Sources say the film’s budget will exceed $75 million, making it one of the priciest Cannes market titles of all time. Chastain, who served as a Cannes juror last year, was disheartened by the female representations in the films she screened. So, she handpicked and enlisted Fan, Cotillard, Cruz and Nyong’o — “Luckily they all said yes,” Chastain told the buyers — as well as her X-Men: Dark Phoenix director Kinberg.
There’s no script yet, but according to Vanity Fair’s Rebecca Keegan, who accidently was allowed into the no-press, top-secret presentation before she was kicked out while live tweeting, the plot revolves around five spies from agencies around the world who form their own team, dubbed 355. Theresa Rebeck (Catwoman) is writing the screenplay.
Check in our gallery lots of HQ pictures from the event.
A few days ago it was announced that some of our favourite actresses was teaming up to a large-scale espionage film that Simon Kinberg will direct. Jessica Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, Fan Bingbing and Lupita Nyong’o will play international agents in 355, a grounded, edgy action thriller that aims to alter a male-dominated genre with a true female ensemble, in the style of spy franchises The Bourne Identity, Mission: Impossible and James Bond. The script is by Theresa Rebeck.
Chastain sat with Deadline when the project was announced last week.
“I had so much fun working on The Help that I always wanted to do another female ensemble film. I love the Bourne movies, the Mission: Impossible films, and wondered why, except for Charlie’s Angels, there hadn’t been a true female ensemble action-thriller spy film. That got my wheels going, along with the idea of casting actresses from all over the world to truly make it an international project. I realized the incredible creative freedom we would have with that. I brought the idea to Simon, told him about the actresses I was thinking of, and he was so sweet. He said, ‘I want to do it with you.’
Then I called all the women, told them what I was envisioning and that I wanted it to be a collaborative process, and how we would all create this together. The one thing that felt important is that we all show up at Cannes, because that would be the beginning of our journey together. Every single actress I called said yes, on the phone call. They committed to Cannes and to everything. So far it has been a very wonderfully easy process.”
She also got the idea of the film title by one of her past projects.
“When I was preparing for Zero Dark Thirty, I had incredible resources working in the CIA I got to learn from. We have a consultant in our film that has a lot of knowledge in espionage. This title came from one of the conversations I had with him. Agent 355 was the code name of a female spy during the American Revolution. She was one of the very first spies for the United States, and her identity is still unknown. For a lot of women who work in the CIA and other organizations like that, Code 355 is a universal slang term for female spy. It’s the invisible woman who was never named.”
Today, Jessica is in Cannes as announced, and the movie has scored its first major territorial deal, with FilmNation Entertainment and CAA Media Finance Group setting a whopping deal in France with SND.
Deadline – That deal was made before tomorrow’s affair at the Cannes Majestic where director Simon Kinberg will be on hand with Jessica Chastain, Marion Cotillard, Penelope Cruz, Fan Bingbing and Lupita Nyong’o to discuss their ambition for the spy ensemble, before a crowd of international and domestic buyers. Deadline revealed the project last week and this week placed it atop the most anticipated list of star packages unveiled at the Cannes Market.
Excitement for this new project is now my middle name.
Ralph Lauren donated to and partnered with Women in Film, a media parity advocacy organization, for the Lead Like a Woman campaign. It focuses on bridging the leadership gap between women and men in film, and encourages followers to share what they think makes a great leader.
To introduce the campaign, Ralph Lauren released one of three short films featuring women from the entertainment industry, including actresses Jessica Chastain, Zoe Lister-Jones, and Rachael Taylor, who spoke about their moms and how they continue to break barriers. In the first video, Chastain, who is also the global ambassador for Ralph Lauren’s Woman fragrance, said, “There were so many sacrifices both my grandmother and mom made to help get me where I am today.”
Ralph Lauren will release the other two videos, Lead With Intensity and Sisterhood of Leaders throughout the week. The new campaign reinforces Ralph Lauren’s gender-parity mission, which includes a pledge to interview at least one qualified woman for every open position, vice-president and above.
2018 – Ralph Lauren > Lead Like a Woman (Mother’s Day Campaign)
2018 – Ralph Lauren > Screencaptures: Lead Like a Woman
Jessica is featured on current issue of Vogue Arabia, featuring a beautiful shoot by Ziga Mihelcic. On the interview (translated exclusively for our website thanks to our partner in crime Mouza), Jessica talks about Piaget, the TimesUp movement, and about being a role model to young girls.
I want girls to grow up with these examples in mind as for them to know that such women exist and may be used as role models. I certainly feel responsible upon selecting roles to play.
Check the scans added in our gallery, as well the photoshoot. And go to our press archive to read the interview.
Photoshoots from 2018 > 007 – Vogue Arabia
Magazines in 2018 > May | Vogue (Arabia)
The first trailer for Woman Walks Ahead was finally released!
Chastain stars as Catheine Weldon, a widow who travels from New York to North Dakota for the opportunity to paint the famous Chief Sitting Bull (Michael Greyeyes), just as tensions between the Lakota reservation and the imposing U.S. Army are rising to a boil.
As Catherine and Sitting Bull begin to bond, her presence is perceived as a threat by the army. “They all think that you and me are planning some kind of uprising,” says Chastain in the trailer. Those men – including Col. Silas Groves (Sam Rockwell) – haven’t forgotten Sitting Bull’s victory against Lt. Col. Custer, and the risk of retaliation looms ever larger, even as the friendship between Catherine and the Chief grows.
Woman Walks Ahead is directed by Susanna White and written by Steven Knight. The film premieres on DIRECTV May 31 and in theaters June 29. Watch the trailer:
Woman Walks Ahead (2017) > Screen Captures: Trailer
Variety confirmed today that Jessica is officially on board of It: Chapter Two as the adult version of Beverly.
Director Andy Muschietti is back to direct. Gary Dauberman will pen the script. Beverly was played by Sophia Lillis in the 2017 horror hit.
Chastain was long rumored to be in contention for the role and even told Screen Rant last November that she would love to play adult Beverly should her schedule work out.
Earlier today it was announced James McAvoy is in talks for the role of Bill, who was played by Jaeden Lieberher in the first pic, while Bill Hader is in talks for the role of Richie, which was played by Finn Wolfhard in the last film.
“Chapter One” of “It” followed the first half of Stephen King’s eponymous novel, telling the story of a group of children who are terrorized by Pennywise the Clown and forced to face their own demons to defeat him. “Chapter Two” will follow the last half of the novel, when the characters return to their hometown years later as adults to face Pennywise once again.
Molly’s Game was released on digital HD last week and we finally have the screen captures updated in our gallery. You can acquire your own copy on Amazon and iTunes, or the DVD/Blu-Ray version that will be released next April 10th.
Molly Bloom’s life made a dramatic turn when she put behind her the desire to have an Olympic skier career and became a successful high-stakes poker entrepreneur. After a decade of running the world’s most exclusive underground poker game for wealthy business leaders, TV and film celebrities, athletes and others, Molly finds herself in hot water with the FBI who had been investigating her for some time for allowing members of the Russian mob to play in her games. Molly and her criminal defense lawyer must prove that she isn’t the mastermind of a criminal enterprise but the unsuspecting victim.
Molly’s Game (2017) > Screencaptures: Blu-Ray
Jessica sat down with Kyle Buchanan for an interview to Vulture, in order of Salomé/Wilde Salomé release.
Jessica Chastain on Her Salomé Revival, Negotiating Nudity, and Being Empowered to Speak Up
There’s a new Jessica Chastain double feature hitting theaters this weekend, but this one isn’t a revival of The Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby or some ambitious two-parter she squeezed in after filming Molly’s Game. Instead, it’s a unique theatrical experience beamed in from 2006, before Chastain was an Oscar-nominated A-lister: That year, Al Pacino cast the then-relatively unknown actress opposite him as the titular character in the Oscar Wilde play Salomé, and as they performed it in Los Angeles, he also shot a feature version of the production and put together a documentary about staging it.
The result, now finally making its way into theaters, starts with Pacino’s behind-the-scenes documentary Wilde Salomé and then shows us their production of Salomé itself, and both are a spectacular showcase for Chastain, not just as an actress, but as someone who thinks and feels deeply about what her role represents. Chastain recently hopped on the phone with Vulture to reminisce about the project that served as her big break and discuss how she found her character, who starts in a place of shy reserve but eventually commands the stage with a famous dance of sexual expression.
Take me back to where you were in your life when this opportunity came along.
Gosh, well, I was auditioning, I was doing a lot of guest spots on television, living in Los Angeles and just dreaming for a great film script to come my way that I could audition for. And then, funnily enough, I was visiting Michelle Williams in Australia because we’d been in a play together, and while I was there I got a call from my agent that said, “Al Pacino wants you to audition for Salomé.” I was shocked. I’d never met Al Pacino! Come to find out that I’d done a play off Broadway called Rodney’s Wife, and Marthe Keller — who had worked with Al on Bobby Deerfield — saw it and she recommended me to Al. So this literally was the most random phone call to get from my agent to say, “Al Pacino wants you to audition for this play.”
That must have put some wind in your sails!
It gave me more confidence. It was an interesting thing because when I got out of college, it felt like you needed to start in television and film before you became financially viable to do theater, because that’s what I was learning from the shows I was seeing: It was very rare to see a non-famous actor in a lead on Broadway. So I moved to Los Angeles, and then to be told that a play that I had been in Off Broadway had helped me to have the opportunity to meet Al Pacino, it was kind of wonderful because that’s where my heart lies. My first love in this industry was the theater.
So what was that first audition like?
I read the play because I was unfamiliar with it and my first thought was that I was shocked how great the part of Salomé was, and I was really surprised that I would have the chance to audition for it. I just assumed that they would take Keira Knightley or someone with more recognizable work, so when I showed up I was prepared, but I really wasn’t expecting to get anything.
For the first audition, I met with the play’s director, Estelle Parsons, and we sat and talked for a while. She helped me so much because I used to be very, very shy and very self-conscious, and as we were talking, she just said, “Why should I know you?” I went, “Oh my gosh! I don’t know.” And she goes “No, tell me, why do I need to know who you are?” So I had to tell her the work I’d done. And before I’d even read one work from the play for her, she pointed to the stage and said, “Let me see you dance. I wanna see how you move.” I was like, “What?” But I could see this little twinkle in her eye and I could tell it was like a bit of a dare to see if I could play the role and go through a transformation like the character does, to do this dance. So I got up and I was like, You’re not gonna scare me away, lady, and I just danced. There was no music or anything, I just was in this empty room dancing, and she goes, “Okay, great.” And then I was told that I was gonna come back to audition again, and this time Al would be there.
And what was it like for you to meet him in person?
In all fairness, I was surprised by his generosity because he’d always played such aggressive, dynamic characters onscreen — not necessarily the most empathetic or compassionate people. And yet, when I met him, I went into the room very nervous and started acting and then I could hear him in the audience saying, like, “Wow! That’s amazing!” I think at one point he said, “What am I seeing? Is that Brando?” Saying the most crazy things! I had never had anyone in an audition look at me as an actor like that, who really valued my work and could see beyond my shyness and my self-consciousness and my insecurities. He was a great cheerleader. He saw in some way that I needed someone in my corner and he became my greatest acting teacher. Everything I am on film and theater — even who I am as a person, I’m sure — it’s because of the time that I got to spend with Al.
I was impressed to see that in the documentary, you’re really fighting for the things you want out of your performance. I feel like there is a straight line I can draw from that version of you to the Jessica Chastain in 2018 who is not afraid to speak her mind.
But you know what that is? It’s because Al set the stage for it. You can be in an environment where it’s very clear people aren’t interested in your opinion, but from the moment I arrived at that audition, he made sure I understood that I was contributing something. Even if I wasn’t going to play the part, I still felt that my opinion and my talent were valued. When someone creates that space for me, it helps me blossom as a performer because then, as I’m discovering who Salomé is and the transformation that she’s making, I can really fight for her. And when I do, I’m not being shushed or overlooked like sometimes I have been in situations, especially in the beginning of my career where people weren’t interested in what I wanted to bring to a character. With Al, you can’t just show up and be a prop. You’re not there to be moved around by a director, you’re there to contribute. Even in a film, with every part I play, it’s not me separate from the director — my character is created from my conversations with the director. We’re discovering it together, and I learned that from Al.
One of the thing we see you negotiating is the nudity in Salomé’s famous dance.
I have no issues with nudity, especially in a lot of European cinema that I adore, but I find that in American cinema, the idea of nudity has always bothered me. I realized why: For me, I’m uncomfortable with nudity when it feels like it’s not the person’s decision to be naked, when it’s something that has been put upon them. In a way, I see that as like a victimization. It trains an audience that exploiting someone in their body should be normal for nudity, when I think the opposite. When people are completely in control of their decisions, that is a really exciting thing. I love the human form — male nudity, female nudity, I’m all about it. I had to get to that place where, for me, it was my decision.
How did that happen?
From the very beginning, like when I first came on to the play, I was never told it was something I had to do. The more I researched and read about the other versions of the play, I learned about how scandalous it was, I read about Sarah Bernhardt, and I read a book called Sisters of Salomé which talked about what it meant to dance naked. What is that power? What is that freedom? Even the idea of the Salem witch trials, when you think of the young girls dancing naked … what is so scary to society about that kind of female sexual freedom. I realized that there’s power in that to harness, so learning all of that stuff actually made me feel it was important for the character that there was nudity.
The crazy thing I learned in the documentary is that you essentially improvised the dance every night.
I was terrified. I just started working with a lot of dance experts. I studied dance when I was younger but with Western dance, it’s very still — there’s not very much movement in the pelvis. With a lot of Eastern dancing, there is, so I worked with people on that. For the dance, the music would change every night, so the music would start a certain way and I would do a certain move where everyone would realize, “Okay, the dance is starting,” and then, depending on what I was doing and depending on what the musician was doing, we would kind of find it together. So I had a beginning and an end but I didn’t know what was going to happen in between.
Was that exciting, too?
In an Actor’s Studio way, it forced me to completely be in the moment. Sometimes the dance would be really long, and sometimes it would be really short. I would just have to find her journey each night and it’s terrifying to think that there’s 1,400 people sitting in the audience and I don’t know what I’m going to do. How am I gonna get there? It’s a very vulnerable thing, but it’s so important because through that dance, Salomé becomes a woman. It’s the first time that she’s taking control over her life and taking control of other people. The audience doesn’t know what to expect, but then when they sense my uncertainty, my nervousness, or maybe even my stumbling or not knowing what move I’m going to make next, that’s Salomé.
Is it fair to say that in some ways, Salomé’s character arc — from shy girl to empowered woman — was not unlike where you were as an actress at that point?
I never thought about it that way, but absolutely. The moment we meet Salomé, we see that she just wants to live this life of purity separate from her mother and the court, but then at the end of the play, our last image of Salomé is her kissing a severed head. We go from chastity to necrophilia — you can’t have a bigger arc than that! I can’t say that I have that specific arc, but I can say that in terms of going from girlhood to womanhood, absolutely I did. It was about this idea that I didn’t have to be a little girl anymore. I could step away and be a full person, and I could have my own voice and not be in the shadow of anything.
This interview has been edited and condensed.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix will rise a little later than anticipated. 20th Century Fox release dates have been reshuffled, pushing back the release of X-Men properties Dark Phoenix and The New Mutants.
In the place of X-Men: Dark Phoenix‘s November 2018 release date will be the Freddie Mercury biopic Bohemian Rhapsody.
Fox pushed back the theatrical release dates of three of its upcoming major releases, Deadline reported late Monday night.
Dark Phoenix will now open on February 14, 2019