Jessica is currently at the Palm Springs Film Festival, and attended a brunch held by Variety, the Variety’s Creative Impact Awards And 10 Directors To Watch. You can check the fist images added in our gallery.
Appearances & Events > 2018 > Jan 03 | Variety’s Creative Impact Awards And 10 Directors To Watch
“Major change is coming!”
Jessica Chastain was recipient of the Chairman’s Award for her starring role in Aaron Sorkin’s directorial debut Molly’s Game last night, at the Palm Springs Film Festival Opening Gala.
“I want to acknowledge what a difficult year 2017 has been for all of us,” said Chastain, who applauded the need for continued diversity in the film industry. “Major change is coming. Change is good. Change is needed. Through a joint effort we will make things better. We must be better. And we will.”
While the news has been saturated with stories of sexual assault and harassment, Chastain made a pointing of sending “some well-deserved love to some of the good guys,” listing such iconic filmmakers and actors as Christopher Nolan, Terrence Malick, Al Pacino and John Madden and the late producer-director Dan Ireland, who passed away in 2016. (Variety)
Our gallery was uploaded with the first batch of pictures. Keep checking for more!
Appearances & Events > 2018 > Jan 02 | 29th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival – Arrivals
Appearances & Events > 2018 > Jan 02 | 29th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival – Press Room
Appearances & Events > 2018 > Jan 02 | 29th Annual Palm Springs International Film Festival – Show
A few days before 2017 ended, Jay-Z decided to break the internet with the Tidal release of Family Feud. Directed by Ava Duvernay, the seven-minute-plus video is a short film, serving up some sci-fi, futuristic realness with the most inclusive, woke A-list cast you will ever see in a music video.
Joining Jay-Z, Beyonce and the heiress to their throne Blue Ivy includes an inspiring roster of actors from every part of the color spectrum: Michael B. Jordan, Trevante Rhodes, Thandie Newton, Jessica Chastain, Irene Bedard, Omari Hardwick, David Oyelowo, Emayatzy Corinealdi, America Ferrera, Aisha Hinds, Henry G. Sanders, and Storm Reid — who is the star of Wrinkle in Time. Rounding out the cast is the “founding mothers”, which feature Mindy Kaling, Rashida Jones, Rosario Dawson, Janet Mock, Brie Larson, Constance Wu, Niecy Nash, and Susan Kelechi Watson, who, as the video shows, are different women from all walks of life who are enlisted to change the country’s constitution.
A preview was released on Youtube but, to see the full video, you need a Tidal subscription. At the Washington Post, you can see more behind the video story – including Ava and Jessica behind-the-scenes pictures.
Edit: The video is now on Youtube, you can watch below:
In respect of the video not being fully released without a subscription, we won’t upload it in our website, but you can see screen captures in our gallery.
Music Videos > Jay-Z – Family Feud (2018)
Driven by outrage and a resolve to correct a power imbalance that seemed intractable just months ago, 300 prominent actresses and female agents, writers, directors, producers and entertainment executives have formed an ambitious, sprawling initiative to fight systemic sexual harassment in Hollywood and in blue-collar workplaces nationwide.
The initiative includes:
— A legal defense fund, backed by $13 million in donations, to help less privileged women — like janitors, nurses and workers at farms, factories, restaurants and hotels — protect themselves from sexual misconduct and the fallout from reporting it.
— Legislation to penalize companies that tolerate persistent harassment, and to discourage the use of nondisclosure agreements to silence victims.
— A drive to reach gender parity at studios and talent agencies that has already begun making headway.
— And a request that women walking the red carpet at the Golden Globes speak out and raise awareness by wearing black.
Called Time’s Up, the movement was announced on Monday with an impassioned pledge of support to working-class women in an open letter signed by hundreds of women in show business, many of them A-listers. The letter also ran as a full-page ad in The New York Times, and in La Opinion, a Spanish-language newspaper.
“The struggle for women to break in, to rise up the ranks and to simply be heard and acknowledged in male-dominated workplaces must end; time’s up on this impenetrable monopoly.”
Join the movement by signing the statement of solidarity and donate now to the Time’s Up Now legal defense fund.
Jessica took Taiwan by storm last year, when she attended the Golden Horse Awards. While in town, she posted for a covershoot to Elle magazine, that now out.
The photoshoot and the interview was published on their website and while I’m waiting the magazine to be available for purchase overseas, I translated it and published in our press archive. I’m sorry in advance for my poor google translation skills and I’m accepting any help to fix the article.
In front of the screen, she is a Hollywood superstar, but she does not feel pressure at the shooting scene. Instead, she is passionate with a smile and a hug.
Hollywood star Jessica Chastain, who came to Taiwan for the Golden Horse Awards for a short stay, took an exclusive cover story for Elle. In order to leave her a deep impression on Taiwan, the editorial team carefully prepared the traditional Taiwanese opera scene, using sky lanterns and opera costumes, and invited the puppet masters Chen Xihuan to perform a cross-knife performance to create a fantastic encounter between oriental culture and western fashion. In Jessica’s beautiful interpretation, we open 2018 in the most gorgeous prologue. (Read More)
Photoshoots from 2018 > 001 – Elle Taiwan
This marks our first post of the new year. 2017 was another great year and be sure to check out our year in review in case you missed it. We have another exciting year to look forward to: “X-Men: Dark Phoenix” is expected to be released and Jessica currently has several projects in development and post-production, including “The Death and Life of John F. Donovan” and “The Division”. We will try to give an overview and summary of what we can expect of Jessica’s career in 2018.
Director: Simon Kinberg | Writers: Simon Kinberg | Cast: Jennifer Lawrence, James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Sophie Turner, Nicholas Hoult, Tye Sheridan, Evan Peters
Log line: Jean Grey begins to develop incredible powers that corrupt and turn her into a Dark Phoenix. Now the X-Men will have to decide if the life of a team member is worth more than all the people living in the world.
Current status: Post-Production
Release: November 2, 2018 (US) | November 2, 2018 (UK)
News tidbit: We recently got the first official look of Jessica Jessica as Veranke in the movie.
External Links: Official Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram
Official plot: Set in 1992, nine years after the events of last year’s X-Men: Apocalypse, Dark Phoenix opens with the X-Men, including Mystique, Beast, Storm, Nightcrawler, and Quicksilver, in a new, unexpected role: national heroes. Charles Xavier even lands on the cover of Time magazine. But his growing ego puts the team at risk. Pride is starting to get the better of him, and he is pushing the X-Men to more extreme missions. After they’re dispatched to space for a rescue mission, a solar flare hits the X-Jet and the surge of energy ignites a malevolent, power-hungry new force within Jean – the Phoenix (Source).
Director: Xavier Dolan | Writers: Xavier Dolan & Jacob Tierney | Cast: Natalie Portman, Kit Harington, Jacob Tremblay, Bella Thorne, Sarah Gadon, Thandie Newton, Susan Sarandon, Kathy Bates
Log line: A decade after the death of an American TV star, a young actor reminisces the written correspondence he shared with him, as well as the impact those letters had on both their lives.
Current status: Post-Production
Release: TBA (US) | TBA (UK)
News tidbit: The movie is still without a distributor in the USA, but was already acquired by Films Séville in Canada. The movie was rumored to premiere during the 2017 Toronto International Film Festival last year, but the Canadian distributor confirmed that the release date got delayed. No recent reports on the new release date thus far, but there have been unconfirmed buzz about the possibility of the movie premiering during Cannes. Dolan’s previous movies, including ‘Mommy’ and ‘It’s Only the End of the World’ premiered during the festival.
External Links: –
Official plot: Starring Jessica Chastain, Kit Harington, Taylor Kitsch, Kathy Bates, Jacob Tremblay, Susan Sarandon, Natalie Portman, Nicholas Hoult, and Thandie Newton the film centers on the tribulations of John Donovan, an American TV star in his late 20s, and his correspondence with Rupert Turner, a young actor-to-be living with his mother in England. Their lives take dramatic turns when the existence of their pen-pal relationship is publicly exposed, eliciting the most ill-founded assumptions and sending Donovan in a vertical downfall. A decade later, the young actor recollects his relationship with his past idol over the course of an interview.
Director: Taylor Hackford | Writers: Abe Sylvia | Cast: Josh Brolin
Log line: The story of the rise and waterfall of country and western icons George Jones and Tammy Wynette.
Current status: Pre-Production/Announced
News tidbit: Jessica first revealed she attached herself to this project in June 2017, stating she’s “terrified about it.” Costar Josh Brolin is also set to produce the movie.
Director: TBA | Writers: Christine Boylan | Cast: TBA
Log line: A police officer gains supernatural powers after she’s exposed to chemical weapons during a botched undercover operation.
Current status: Pre-Production/Announced
News tidbit: The movie was first announced in November 2016 with Jessica also attached to serve as producer. More recently, Deadline reported Christine Boylan has been set to adapt the screenplay. They are reporting the following story:
Lotus Entertainment has set Christine Boylan to adapt Painkiller Jane, Jimmy Palmiotti and Joe Quesada’s iconic comic series that has Jessica Chastain attached to star and produce along with Solipsist Films’ Stephen L’Heureux and Kelly Carmichael, latter of whom is Chastain’s partner at 375 Pictures. Lenny Beckerman will produce for Lotus.
Chastain will play Jane Vasko, a New York City street cop who gets recruited by the FBI to infiltrate a major NYC drug and human trafficking ring. In a near-death experience, Jane develops exceptional regenerative abilities that give her a unique indestructible advantage. With nothing to live for and no way to die, Painkiller Jane becomes an unstoppable force of nature seeking revenge to those who destroyed her life as she leaves a path of death and destruction in her wake.
Boylan’s credits include Punisher, Hellblazer and Once Upon a Time and WME reps her. Graphic novelist Palmiotti has penned volumes of Deadpool, Jonah Hex, Punisher and is currently writing Harley Quinn for DC Comics. Monilith, based on his graphic novel, is set up at Lionsgate.
Director: TBA | Writers: Arash Amel | Cast: TBA
Log line: An examination of the relationship between film star Ingrid Bergman and wartime photographer Robert Capa.
Current status: Pre-Production/Announced
News tidbit: It was announced during the 2017 Cannes Film Festival that Jessica attached herself and would serve as producer on “Seducing Ingrid Bergman”. The screenplay will be based on Chris Greenhalgh’s book.
Director: Stephen Gaghan | Writers: Stephen Gaghan | Cast: Jake Gyllenhaal
Log line: As the battle to take back NYC wages on; Gyllenhaal and Chastain work together to restore order while the factions have their own agenda. Stay tuned for this action packed spinoff of Tom Clancy’s The Division.
Current status: Pre-Production/Announced
News tidbit: It was first announced in August 2016 that Jessica and Jake Gyllenhaal were attached to “The Division”. Early 2017 it was reported Oscar winner Stephen Gaghan was set to direct. Jessica, Gyllenhaal and Riva Marker are set to produce.
Jessica launched her production company Freckle Films in February 2016. The company will produce The Division, Painkiller Jane, and Seducing Ingrid Bergman. Furthermore, Freckle Films also optioned two books: The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister and Camille Pagan’s novel, Life and Other Near-Death Experiences.
Our previous look ahead of 2017 can be found over here. Cheers to another great and exciting year in Jessica’s career, we can’t wait to see what 2018 will bring us!
This is our latest update in 2017, and first of all I want to wish our visitors a very happy New Year! Thanks for your support and friendship!
Here’s a summary of Jessica in 2017:
The year started with Jessica attending the Golden Globes, in which she was nominated for her work in Miss Sloane. This was, sadly, the only big award the movie was nominated. She still promoted the film in Paris, attending the premiere in March and also a photocall in Madrid, back in May.
Still in January, the trailer for I Am Jane Doe, a documentary Jessica narrates, was released. While this, Jessica was busy filming Molly’s Game – that was just released on limited theaters last December 25.
In February, she attended a beauty panel for the Pirelli Calendar (that, if you remember, was the very first project announced for 2017 last year).
The Zookeeper’s Wife movie was set for a release in March, so she started an international promotional tour in Warsaw, Poland. While in the country she attended a press conference, a screening, visited a local TV show for an interview and also visited the Warsaw Zoo, for a tour that later would be released in the film’s DVD. Also, to make us all proud, she spent the International Women’s Day in a rally made in Warsaw on March 08.
Keeping busy with The Zookeeper’s Wife promotion during the whole month in March, she attended screenings in New York, Washington, Los Angeles, appearances at the Today Show, James Corden, Jimmy Fallon, panels at SAG-Aftra and AOL Build and also a press conference in West Hollywood. In May, she visited UK and made appearances at Graham Norton and the Chris Evans Show. Her latest appearance to promote this movie was in November, for a Japan screening.
Jessica’s first promotional event for Molly’s Game was during Las Vegas CinemaCon, in March. She was with Aaron Sorkin and some footage was shown, but the movie was still in post production – it has been just wrapped. The film at first would have a November release – eyeing the awards season for sure – but that was later changed. The movie got its bang during TIFF, receiving flawless reviews on both performance and script. The first trailer was released before the festival, in August, but it was during the festival we saw the movie being really put under awards radar. The official promotion tour for Molly’s Game started in November with Jessica, Idris and Aaron attending a Deadline panel. She also was, once again, part of Variety’s Actors on Actors. The movie was selected to close the AFI festival and since then she attended several screenings and panels to promote it, and an international tour including Madrid, Berlin, UK and Amsterdan, closing with a screening in New York last December 15.
She also promoted Woman Walks Ahead on TIFF, attending interviews and screenings, but since the movie didn’t have a release date, the full attention went to Molly’s Game. The film was acquired later in October by A24 and we’re still waiting for more info about it.
In May, Jessica was announced as part of the Cannes Festival jury, which meant a very very busy month for her. Starting on the 16th, she attended the jury dinner that kicked off the festival. After that, she attended the jury photocall, the opening night gala, the Ojka and The Meyerowitz Stories premiere, the Chopard Party, HBO Dinner, Women in Motion, the Chanel Dinner, the 70th Anniversary photocall and red carpet and at this point we might have just lost track of all events she attended until the end of the festival, that closed on May 28th. In an adorable note, she brought her brother Daniel at the In The Fade premiere. Jessica also made headlines with her statement at the closing press conference, in which she tells she’s ‘disturbed’ by how women are depicted on film.
“This is the first time I watched 20 films in 10 days, and what I really took away from this experience is how the world views women. It was quite disturbing to me, to be honest. There were quite some exceptions. I was surprised by the representation of female characters on film.”
Alongside the busy promotional movie tour, she was able – don’t even ask us how – to attend several events during the year. She attended the Met Gala in May, a screening for Kathryn Bigelow movie, Detroit in August, the Ralph Lauren show in September, the Gala in the Garden in October and the Halloween’s All Hallow’s Eve ball in October.
Also in October she attended a panel part of Produced By Conference. She participated of The Power To Shake It Up panel, alongside actresses Sarah Jessica Parker, Alison Benson and her Freckles Film partner Kelly Charmichael, keeping her advocacy for equality – specially in what concerns on Women’s Rights. Because of her flawless advocacy, she received a lot of attention during 2017, specially when Harvey Weinstein was outed by a New Yorker report. She was one of the fist female actresses to say she was well aware of the ex-mogul’s reputation for sexually harassing women.
I was warned from the beginning. The stories were everywhere. To deny that is to create an enviornment for it to happen again.
— Jessica Chastain (@jes_chastain) October 9, 2017
Her very vocal activism put her in the eye of the media, and she received several prizes during the year. During CinemaCon, in March, she received the Female Star of the Year award. In April, she was honoured at the Variety’s Power of Woman. In October, she was named – again – one of Elle’s 2017 Women in Hollywood. She was also among People’s 25 Women Changing the World – this time for her animal activism.
Appearances & Events > 2017
Some new projects has been announced for Jessica this year, including a X-Men villain! In June it was announced she was in talks to star the next movie. In August she confirmed it herself on her social media and this month we had the first look of her – still no officially announced – character. In May (during Cannes) we also had the first (official) look of her character at the Xavier Dolan’s The Life and Death of John F Donovan.
On June 10, Jessica married Gian Luca in a very intimate ceremony on Italy. Her friends Jess Weixler, Anne Hathaway, Emily Blunt, Edgar Ramirez and Xavier Dolan was in attendance, but she preferred to not release any kind of picture to the media, specially after some paparazzi used drones to take pictures.
Jessica was on cover of several magazines this year, including W Magazine, Grazia, American Way, Backstage, The Hollywood Reporter, Elle, Vanity Fair, Town & Country, Evening Standard.
Magazines & Scans > Magazines in 2017
Photoshoots & Portraits > Photoshoots from 2017
Favourites of 2017
Here is our favourites of this year. Let us know if you agree with it or not.
Choosing a single one is a hard task but I’ll keep it fair. Once again, a redhead in yellow won my heart and, once again, Cannes made it. In Cannes 70th Anniversary Celebration, Jessica wore a golden gown Armani Privé that completely stole the night.
We had another year of amazing photoshoots, portraits and campaigns and, as usual, is really hard to choose just one. But my favourite is the one she made to Grazia Magazine, photographed by Alexei Hay.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix casting news. Once again Jessica is using her chance to make different roles, running from the typical female characters we usually see around. Also, its always great to see her working with James McAvoy once again. Also, she playing country singer Tammy Wynette. How amazing this will be?
Forever and ever her interviews to Graham Norton. Specially the one she did in May to promote Miss Sloane. The lineup was great and she also made God’s work asking Fassbender to do his little dance. 🙂
When Harvey Weinstein news came out, everyone was talking about it. And, obviously, on her most recent interviews, Jessica was asked A LOT about the issue. To Evening Standard, she spoke about some decisions she made during her career.
I’m not going to make a movie with Harvey Weinstein. And I’m not going to get paid a third less than my male co-star who has equal experience. If you want to blackball me for that, then okay, but I won’t participate in the disease.’
Empire has revealed some new images in its latest issue for the next instalment in the X-Men movie franchise, X-Men: Dark Phoenix. One of the images features Charles Xavier (James McAvoy), and Jessica Chastain in her unrevealed role. Check it:
After the X-Men team is dispatched to space for a rescue mission, a solar flare hits the X-Jet and the surge of energy ignites a malevolent, power-hungry new force within Jean – the Phoenix.
X-Men: Dark Phoenix is set for release on November 2nd, 2018. Simon Kinberg is directing a cast that includes franchise veterans Michael Fassbender (Magneto), James McAvoy (Professor X), Jennifer Lawrence (Mystique), Nicholas Hoult (Beast), Alexandra Shipp (Storm), Sophie Turner (Jean Grey), Tye Sheridan (Cyclops), Kodi Smit-McPhee (Nightcrawler) and Evan Peters (Quicksilver) alongside new additions Jessica Chastain and Lamar Johnson.
Via Comic Book Movie
We would like to remind everyone that “Molly’s Game” is out in U.S. theaters starting today. Jessica co-stars in the movie alongside Idris Elba, Kevin Costner, Michael Cera, Jeremy Strong and more.
Molly’s Game is based on the true story of Molly Bloom, an Olympic-class skier who ran the world’s most exclusive high-stakes poker game for a decade before being arrested in the middle of the night by 17 FBI agents wielding automatic weapons. Her players included Hollywood royalty, sports stars, business titans and finally, unbeknownst to her, the Russian mob. Her only ally was her criminal defense lawyer Charlie Jaffey, who learned that there was much more to Molly than the tabloids led us to believe.
The movie is officially rated ‘fresh’ at Rotten Tomatoes with 83% and Meta Critics score of 71. Jessica received a Golden Globes and a Satellite Award nomination (among other critics awards nominations) for her portrayal of Molly Bloom. The film will be out everywhere next January 5.
Check our gallery for additional images.
Films > Molly’s Game (2017)
LA Times has published today a new article in which Jessica talks about her new life – and how she’s balancing work and off-screen life, including talking about how much she wants (or do not want) to act. You can read it below:
Jessica Chastain isn’t sure how much she wants to act anymore. She’s not retiring or anything, not yet — she’s just not as passionate about the job as she used to be.
“I’m more interested in the idea of making the world a better place,” she says. “In thinking about ‘What am I contributing to the world?,’ my passions keep shifting away from myself.”
Coming from most Hollywood stars, this would probably just sound like sanctimonious garbage. But Chastain, 40, has taken action that actually backs up her words.
Over the last year, the actress has made about as many headlines for being outspoken on Twitter as she has for her film roles. Alongside Rose McGowan, Amber Tamblyn, Lena Dunham and Olivia Munn, Chastain has become one of the industry’s most vocal feminists, sharing her thoughts on gender equality and sexual harassment with her 650,000 followers.
This month, her feed has also been interspersed with promotional tweets about “Molly’s Game,” in which she plays Molly Bloom, the infamous “poker princess” who organized underground games frequented by the likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Tobey Maguire and Ben Affleck until she was arrested by the FBI.
The film, out Dec. 25, was written by Aaron Sorkin and marks his directorial debut. It offers Chastain the sort of tour de force lead role actresses don’t often get in Hollywood. Surrounded by a supporting cast including Idris Elba and Kevin Costner, Chastain’s Bloom dominates the movie, with razor-sharp delivery of Sorkin’s rapid-fire dialogue narrating the entire journey.
Despite the strong critical attention for her performance — she’s up for a Golden Globe for her part in the movie next month — Chastain’s social media focus hasn’t really been on “Molly’s Game.” Instead, her aim on Twitter is to “amplify the voices” of women who have been victims of harassment — women, she said, who “have nothing to gain except to help other women.”
Even before the Harvey Weinstein scandal broke on Oct. 5, Chastain was sending out candid tweets about the problems she saw in the business. On Aug. 1, after CBS announced it had no fall shows with female leads, Chastain wrote: “I’ll just @netflix and chill. Or some @HBO greatness. …There’s so many incredible options that don’t include @CBS.”
When the news hit about claims of sexual misconduct against Weinstein, she acknowledged that she’d been “warned from the beginning.” “YEP,” she tweeted a few weeks later after The Times wrote about alleged sexual misconduct by filmmaker Brett Ratner.
Soon, she began drawing attention to prior claims of sexual assault against director Bryan Singer — even though he is a producer on “X-Men: Dark Phoenix,” the upcoming comic book franchise installment that Chastain has a role in. (The actress later clarified that she “didn’t realize he was involved until recently” and said “he wasn’t on set.”)
“If [tweeting] puts an X on me in terms of ‘Oh, that’s it, she’s out of the industry,’ I don’t care,” Chastain said. “When the first article came out about Weinstein, I retweeted it, and immediately kept sharing stories. And then I got an e-mail from someone who was very successful in the industry who said I was using my social media platform irresponsibly. I got pushback.”
It was exactly this defiant nature that made Bloom feel Chastain was the right actress to bring her story to the big screen.
“Obviously, she’s an extraordinary actress, but I am so moved by her moral courage and fearlessness when it comes to speaking out in a town that has traditionally not wanted women to,” said Bloom, 39, who has long since retired from the gambling circuit and now lives in Denver. “Of course, we wanted someone who was a formidable actress — but the fact that she’s also a real person with a real purpose and huge heart was a big win.”
Meeting Bloom for the first time at the Four Seasons in 2015, Chastain now acknowledges, she wasn’t quite as generous. She’d spent days Googling Bloom, sifting through salacious tabloid gossip and images of the well-manicured brunet wearing low-cut dresses.
“I’m going to be completely honest: I had a lot of judgment — and I have some shame and a little bit of embarrassment saying that,” Chastain said. “I Googled her and was like, ‘Look how she’s presenting herself in this world. I understand who this girl is.'”
Minutes into her sit-down with Bloom, Chastain realized she’d been unfair. She said she came to understand that Bloom was the product of a world that rewards and values women for being sexually desirable — and then when they are sexually desirable, “we go, ‘You can’t take her seriously, because look at her.'”
Soon, she started obsessing over the Kardashians — studying their contouring and eventually plastering their pictures all over her trailer. She even infiltrated an underground poker game in New York, where she saw a couple women wearing Herve Leger dresses, at the ready, she said, to provide massages for the male players.
“I called Aaron the next day and said, ‘We need bandage dresses,'” Chastain recalled. “He said, ‘I have no idea what that is, but that sounds fine.'”
Actually putting on that bandage dress, however, affected Chastain in ways she hadn’t anticipated. Typically, the actress dresses relatively conservatively — on this day in November, she was wearing high-waisted pants and a bow-tie blouse. But walking onto set in skin-tight garments, Chastain said she felt a “rush of power,” noticing everyone’s eyes on her.
“And I knew why,” she said. “Someone showed me the comments on the trailer for this film, and there are so many comments about my cleavage. I’ve never done a movie where people have been talking about my body like that.”
The wardrobe also restricted her physically. She was almost always uncomfortable, worrying about leaning over and revealing too much.
“Sometimes I’d have to do an action and say, ‘I can’t do that because I’m in a plunging dress,'” she said. “You lose your ability to move in ways that are natural. I was wobbling in heels. I felt like I was giving something away — my own sense of freedom.”
As a novice director, Sorkin admitted, he had some initial hesitation about working with an actress who’d been directed by Terence Malick (“The Tree of Life”), Christopher Nolan (“Interstellar”) and Kathryn Bigelow (“Zero Dark Thirty”).
“Would she be taking direction from me, a first-time director, or would I be directed by her?” he said he asked himself. But after a brief meeting — during which Chastain bluntly told him that the perfunctory face-to-face was “stupid” and that he should “just give [her] the part” — Sorkin felt confident he’d found his Molly.
“By the time we got on set, we had talked so much that once the cameras started rolling, I would only have to step in between takes to give direction in five words or less — little hotter, faster, colder, slower,” the director said. “And the thrill of watching Jessica going from the first take to the second was extraordinary.
“On the first, she would do a wonderful job, and you’d think, ‘Wow, that’s good. We got it. Let’s get a second one for safety.’ And the second one was when she’d blow the doors off the room. Of course, because no good deed goes unpunished, the quality of the second would lead me to say, ‘Well, let’s definitely do a third.'”
Chastain studied at Juilliard, training paid for with a scholarship provided by Robin Williams. After graduating, she struggled to find work, until suddenly, at age 33, six long-gestating films she’d made were all released in the same year, including “The Help” and “Take Shelter.”
Because she came into the industry as a “fully formed adult,” Chastain said, she hasn’t been “victimized in the extreme ways” that many other actresses have recently revealed. Which isn’t to say that she hasn’t witnessed her fair share of inappropriate behavior.
When she first arrived in Hollywood, she said, she had a general meeting with an independent producer who spent the entire coffee outing lamenting how his wife “never gave him blow jobs anymore.” On set, male producers would jokingly smack her on the behind. Sometimes, her male costars would refuse to come out of their trailers, keeping the crew waiting as Chastain continued to meet her call times.
“In 2011, when I started to gain some heat in the industry, I was so excited,” she said, “but I felt this crippling fear that it was all going to be taken away from me if I said the wrong thing or offended the wrong person. But it was like, ‘I’m here, I’m being professional, so why am I afraid that if I say my opinion that I’m going to be denied my livelihood?”
That changed in 2013, when a rumor circulated that Chastain had a rivalry with Jennifer Lawrence, both of whom were up for Oscars that year. Chastain was so “disturbed” by the gossip that she took to Facebook, calling Lawrence “utterly charming and a great talent.”
“I was so scared to do that on social media, but it was so easy,” she said. “So then I was like, ‘Oh, that was easy, and I’m gonna do it all the time. I don’t care.'”
Chastain has changed in other ways lately too. For years, she never thought she’d get married. She was raised by a single mother, Jerri, who gave birth to Chastain at age 17. From a young age, she watched her mother struggle to support her family and thought, “I’m never going to go through this.” Instead, she focused on taking care of herself and becoming financially independent.
But then she met Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo, an Italian fashion executive who works at the label Moncler. Though she’d always imagined marriage to be the act of “giving something away, or losing something,” the idea of being with Passi de Preposulo felt different.
“It’s not losing, it’s actually celebrating how I feel about you and who you are,” said Chastain, who wed her husband at his family’s 17th-century Italian estate in June. “It’s a beautiful thing. So I’ve loved being married.”
While she’s becoming more comfortable being a “wife,” she’s still uneasy about being labeled one of Hollywood’s foremost defenders of women.
“I don’t want to be,” she said, shaking her head. “Well, it’s not that I don’t want to be, but I don’t want it to be about me. I want it to be about them. I didn’t do anything. What I’ve done is so small.
“I may never work again with so-and-so who’s mad at me. I may not work with people who have issues with the way I am amplifying the voices of victims, and that’s fine with me. But I’m going to work with people coming forward with whom I share similar points of view.”