Olivia Wilde in the spotlight with “Don’t Worry Darling”

“do not worry my love” He was in the spotlight from the start. And this was long before Harry Styles got involved.

It was a movie everyone wanted to make—about 18 studios and streaming services were courting Wilde for the chance to partner with her on her second film as director: a mid-century psychological thriller about a housewife, Alice (Florence Beau), who begins to question her ideal life. of pictures and the mysterious company that her husband Jack (Stiles) works for.

But it hasn’t stopped making headlines in a couple of years, from the sudden departure of Shia LaBeouf (replaced by Styles) to the paparazzi-fuelled conspiracy about Wilde and Styles’ off-camera relationship. Then there was a strange moment earlier this year when Wilde, from ex-Jason Sudeikis with whom she shares two children, was handed custody papers in the middle of a presentation to thousands of exhibitors in Las Vegas.

Even last week, LaBeouf, who will go to court next year over allegations of abuse from former FKA branches, decided to challenge the two-year-old’s account that he had been expelled. Gave the entertainment trade Miscellaneous emails and texts to prove his case He quit. It’s generated a buzz that you can’t buy, but also the constant tabloid and TikTok gossip — all for a yet-to-be-released movie.

But soon the conversation will return to the film itself: “Don’t Worry, Baby” will debut at the Venice International Film Festival. on September 5 before opening in theaters nationwide on September 23. Plus, Wilde doesn’t care what drives people to the stage – as long as they go.

Wilde spoke to The Associated Press recently about her vision, her feud with the rating board and why Alice is the hero we need right now. Notes have been modified for clarity and brevity.

AP: What are some of the big ideas you wanted to explore?

Wilde: I wanted to make what (screenwriter) Katie (Silberman) and I always describe as a Trojan horse movie: something on the outside that’s nice and fun but once you crawl inside, it’s actually a lot more complicated and maybe a really interesting challenge. I also really understood that this would be an opportunity for the actress to really praise. She was a heroine I wanted to see on screen. I wanted to create a character with an actress who represented the kind of woman that I feel our society needs.

AP: You originally intended to play Alice. Were you happy with the decision to step back and take on a supporting role?

Wilde: Oh yeah. No part of me would want it any other way. I think what Florence did with this role was uniquely great. This character is the heroine of the ages. And she, as an actress, is that rare combination of dramatic, brilliant comedy and action heroine who can run like Tom Cruise. Like what can an actress do in stunts and throw off these stunning emotional acrobatics and do it effortlessly with an accent that isn’t even theirs? Like, come on. It’s like fiddling with the wing of an airplane.

AP: You’ve talked about some of your stylistic influences, from the portrayal of Slim Aarons to Adrian Lyne’s thriller thrillers. What are some other themes?

Wilde: I’m a huge fan of 1950s icons and a lot of art, architecture, cars, and music. This was a chance to truly play in this world. The architectural influence of (Richard) Neutra is throughout the film. Closely.

I always make endless playlists, watchlists, and reading lists. It was a really funny bunch of stuff. People were like, What is this movie? You want me to watch Requiem for a Dream, The Truman Show, and Gentlemen Prefer Blondes, and you want me to read The Female Mystery, but also Jordan Peterson?

AP: “Booksmart” has treated female sexuality very explicitly and “Don’t Worry, Darling” is already sparking discussions about some of the sexual acts shown in the trailer. Was that a battle to include that?

Wilde: Yes. There is a lot to get out of the trailer. The MPA came down really hard on me and the trailer at the last second and I had to cut some shots, which I resented because I thought they raised it another notch. But of course we still live in a really strict society. I think the lack of eroticism in American film is a new genre. Then when it comes to female fun, it’s something we don’t see very often unless you’re talking about queer cinema. You know, it’s interesting because in a lot of weird movies, the female characters are allowed to have more fun. The masses are not as tough as companies think. However people get upset. I mean, people really resent me for this. I think it’s a testament to the movie. We want to be provocative. The idea is not to make you feel safe.

AP: This is also a movie that has been in the spotlight from the start, creating a buzz and a rumour. How was that for you as a director?

Wilde: Every filmmaker longs for people to see their film. That’s all you want people to see. If people are excited about a movie, for whatever reason, what you wish is for them to come in the door. Whether you’re a fan of the 1950s cars and that’s what will take you to this movie, or if you’re going simply because you like our amazing team, all I care about is that you get a chance to watch it, and I hope people have the instinct to share it. What I really wish is for people to see it again. I think it’s a real second watch movie. There are a lot of Easter eggs out there.

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Follow AB Film Writer Lindsey Bahr on Twitter: www.twitter.com/ldbahr

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