Oprah Winfrey was recently interviewed by People’s Jess Cagle, and she mentioned Reese.
When speaking about her new movie The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, Oprah said: “I’d never played a role like that and nor have I done it enough to feel really solidly comfortable in the space. I have a lot of actor friends … like I was on set the other day with ‘Wrinkle in Time’ and I said to Reese [Witherspoon], ‘So Reese, how many movies have you done?’ and she said, ‘I don’t know, I don’t know … hundreds, I don’t know.’ So I was like ‘Oh God, please don’t ask me how many movies I’ve done.’ I think I’ve done five. It’s rare that I feel intimated, but I felt intimidated.”
Vogue.com interviewed Reese towards the end of last month, in the run-up to the finale of Big Little Lies; here is what they talked about:
Reese Witherspoon on Who She Initially Wanted to Play on Big Little Lies—and What She Thinks About Those Critics Who Dismiss the Show as Just Another Soap Opera
We only have a few days to go until the finale of HBO’s Big Little Lies airs—why, oh why are there only seven episodes?—but we can already anticipate the massive void we’ll be feeling once the show wraps up on Sunday. Thankfully, Reese Witherspoon is here to help us cope. As Madeline Martha Mackenzie, Witherspoon’s character has become a fan favorite for her type-A personality and wicked one liners (“I love my grudges; I tend to them like little pets,” she says in an early episode). We spoke on the phone with the star and executive producer of the hit TV show, and talked about who she initially thought she would play, whether or not Ed and Madeline have a good marriage, and what she thinks about those (mostly male) critics who dismiss the show as just another soap opera.
Some spoilers ahead for those who aren’t caught up.
What drew you to Liane Moriarty’s book? Why were you excited to bring it to the screen?
I thought the book was really well plotted. I loved all the characters, I thought they were really dynamic women and very truthful in their struggles and the way that they communicated with each other. I thought it was a unique opportunity to have five really talented, diverse women on screen together, which is something that doesn’t happen that often.
Did you always want to play Madeline, or did you ever consider playing any of the other roles?
I didn’t know who I was going to play. Nicole [Kidman] really wanted to play Celeste, but I don’t know, I thought for a minute I might have played Renata. But then I was in a meeting with David Kelley and Nicole and I said I didn’t know who I was going to play and they looked at me like I was crazy. They said, “You’re Madeline!” And I said, “I am? What do you mean?” And they were like, “You are very clearly Madeline.” And I thought, “Is this an insult? I don’t know.” But then I kind of started thinking how I would do this. I started talking to Nicole, she was very helpful when I was creating the character. We added a lot of stuff that wasn’t in the book.
I haven’t read the book, but I know that David E. Kelley rewrote a lot of Madeline for you. I know the affair with her play’s director, for example, wasn’t in the book. What was behind the decision to add that?
Well, we talked about it. I just felt like everybody sort of has a secret in the show. All five of us have a secret. We’re all hiding something from each other and I felt like Madeline needed something she was hiding as well; it added a new conflict for her to resolve. It was just something interesting to play instead of just being a busy body.
On that note, do you think Madeline and Ed have a good marriage?
I don’t think of it in terms of good and bad. I think they have an active marriage, they are working on their marriage. There are aspects that are really positive and there’s parts of it there are really difficult. I don’t know what “good” is, but there’s a lot of love there, for sure.Continue reading this entry »
Over the past few days I’ve reverted to working on the Movies section of our Gallery, and have updated the Penelope section. Some of the photos have been replaced with HQ versions, but best of all we have HQ photos from a promotional shoot Reese did for the film, plus gorgeous HD screencaptures from the film! This is one of my favourite Reese films – it’s charming and sweet, and Reese is hilarious in her small part as Penelope’s friend Annie … it’s a very watchable, fun movie.
To stick with the Penelope theme, within this post are videos of Reese’s co-stars talking about her, a couple of interviews with Reese about the film (it was the first that she produced through her former and first production company, Type A Films), and trailers.
Enjoy the updates 🙂
Annie: “I was just thinking … I might get a little work done myself … for my ears, they just kind of stick out up here a little on the top – I mean I’m no Penelope!”
‘Home Again’ Starring Reese Witherspoon Gets Release Date From Open Road
Hallie Meyers-Shyer’s directorial debut Home Again, the romantic comedy that stars Reese Witherspoon, has just been dated by distributor Open Road. The film, which Meyers-Shyer also wrote, will be released September 8, 2017. Her mother Nancy Meyers is producing alongside Black Bicycle Entertainment’s Erika Olde, who also financed.
Home Again follows a recently separated mother (Witherspoon) of two whose new life in Los Angeles is overturned when she decides to take in three young, charismatic guys (Pico Alexander, Nat Wolff and Jon Rudnitsky) who become part of her unconventional family. Michael Sheen, Candice Bergen and Lake Bell co-star.
The film will be released one week after another Wolff film — the animated Leap! — is being released by The Weinstein Company. Right now, the date is clear for Home Again which is the only romantic comedy in that slot. The only other movie slated for that weekend is Warner Bros’ horror film It.
IMR International is handling the international sales.
‘Big Little Lies’ Finale Hits New Ratings Highs On HBO, Could There Be Season 2?
HBO’s Big Little Lies had a strong finish, extending its streak to three consecutive weeks of new series highs with the finale last night. The last episode of the limited series drew 1.9 million viewers for the 9 PM premiere telecast, up +34% from 1.4 million last Sunday, and 2.5 million viewers for the night — both new high marks for the drama starring Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman, Shailene Woodley and Alexander Skarsgård. Big Little Lies ended its seven-episode run with the finale premiere viewership +64% above the February debut.
The strong ratings finish of Big Little Lies on the linear network, its solid social media buzz and potent multi-platform viewing — episodes of the series’ average is 7.1 million viewers and climbing, led by the premiere’s nearly 9 million viewers to-date – raise the question about a potential second installment. Like HBO’s True Detective and The Night Of, Big Little Lies was intended for a limited run. True Detective eventually became a series with a second season and a third in the works. There are also discussion about a second installment of The Night Of.
There are currently no plans for a second season of Big Little Lies but HBO is said to be leaving the door open if the creative team behind the limited series, which includes writer David E. Kelley and director Jean-Marc Vallée, come up with an idea to extend the franchise.
Elle.com spoke to Big Little Lies author Liane Moriarty this week, and she revealed her thoughts on the changes to the book in the series, and the possibility of a sequel …
Big Little Lies Author Liane Moriarty Isn’t Ruling Out Season Two
It’s not just you—the Big Little Lies withdrawal symptoms are setting in for all of us. We’ve analyzed the fashion, lusted after the real estate, obsessed over the soundtrack, mulled over the show’s potent and timely themes about toxic masculinity and female friendship, and are now just left craving more.
Though all seven episodes of Big Little Lies were scripted by David E. Kelley, the bulk of the series —its core storyline, its sharply defined characters, and much of its distinctive dialogue—came directly from Liane Moriarty’s original 2014 novel. And Reese Witherspoon revealed on Friday that she is in discussions with Moriarty about developing a story for season two.
ELLE.com caught up with Moriarty this week to get some intel on the adaptation process, how she felt about the numerous changes made from page to screen, and those season two rumors.
When Nicole Kidman approached her about optioning the novel, Moriarty had only one stipulation.
“When I first spoke to Nicole Kidman in Sydney about the series and she said she wanted to play Celeste, I was thrilled. I thought she’d be perfect for the role, and it turns out she couldn’t have been more perfect. I said to her that it was very important to me that her character doesn’t just take the abuse—she hits back. That was my only stipulation. I didn’t want her to be a passive, pretty victim. I wanted to show how these relationships become tangled and confused.”
She had no qualms about switching the setting from the novel’s fictional Australia beachside town to the real city of Monterey, California.
“Over the years, readers have often written to me commenting on how playground politics are the same the world over! I thought the Californian setting was beautiful and very similar to the Australian setting I’d imagined. In a way, I think changing the setting helped me ‘let go,’ which I think every author has to do when their work is adapted. If it had been set in Australia, I might have resisted changes to the book, which I’ve always known and understood were necessary in an adaptation.”
She loved some of the changes that were made—and accepted others.
“I really loved some of the changes—I thought the wardrobe choice for Madeline at the trivia night was better than my own. I wish I’d thought of that. My Madeline would not have had an affair, but I do understand why the Madeline in the series did, and I was prepared from the beginning for there to be changes. I think it’s a mistake when adaptations try to stick too closely to the original source material. There were a number of scenes which were entirely new, created by David E. Kelley, and I actually loved watching those scenes because I could enjoy them more freely, in a way, as I wasn’t comparing them to the book.”Continue reading this entry »
The finale episode of Big Little Lies aired on Sunday, and it did not disappoint! The mysteries unravelled over the course of the episode, resulting in an intense but poignant ending. As ever, everything was on point – direction, writing, music and acting etc.. Reese put in a fabulous final performance as Madeline, and I just loved the complexities of her character and her relationship with Ed. The episode only left us wanting more!!
HD screencaptures have been added to the Gallery, and within this post are a few clips from the show. Don’t watch any of the clips if you haven’t seen the full episode and want to avoid spoilers! Nicole Kidman did a lot of press prior to the episode airing, and further down is a quote from her about working with Reese and the potential for more…
Madeline: “I would’ve told him to go f*** himself. But I don’t talk like that.”