How great is it to have Keira back in the spotlight? I’ve certainly missed her interviews, and yesterday she made an appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert whilst promoting Colette in New York City.
The ‘Colette’ star, who shares Stephen’s passion for classic Emma Thompson movies like ‘Sense and Sensibility,’ is a newly-minted Officer of the British Empire.
VARIETY – Filmmaker Wash Westmoreland, and actresses Keira Knightley and Denise Gough dropped by the Variety Studio presented by AT&T at the Toronto Film Festival to discuss their new movie, “Colette,” which tells the story of French novelist Gabrielle Colette.
Westmoreland co-wrote the film with his late partner, Richard Glatzer, who he had previously written and directed all his movies with, including “Still Alice,” which won Julianne Moore the Oscar for best actress. The pair had wanted to make “Colette” for years and before Glatzer passed away from complications due to ALS in March 2015, he hoped it would be their next project.
“He got to see Julianne win the Academy Award when he was in the ICU in the hospital,” Westmoreland revealed. “We knew we had a chance now, we had a springboard into our next film. And I said, ‘What is it to be?’ At the time, he was just typing with his toe and he typed ‘Colette’ on his machine. And two weeks later, he passed away. But I knew what I had to do and set about doing it.”
Westmoreland said his first solo directing effort proved to be emotional. “It was difficult because Richard and I had worked so closely for so many years. We knew each other so well, having written together, worked together, slept together, done everything together for so long that part of my mind is Richard, and sometimes when I would be faced with a difficult problem, I would ask: ‘What would Richard say?’ And the answer would be there.” Westmoreland added that in many ways, he considers Glatzer a co-director on the film.
Knightley has played a number of dynamic women in her career, and noted that portraying Colette was empowering. “I was like, ‘Oh, I like walking in your shoes, this is great. I walk tall.’”
When Knightley and Gough were asked about other powerful women they would like to portray, Gough joked, “I would like to play Keira Knightley in the story of her life.”
Knightley added that she’d be interested in the stories of Josephine Bonaparte and Florence Nightingale. Gough said, “I think we could always do with another Joan of Arc. You can never get enough Joan.”
Gough then revealed that she has a personal connection to a historical woman ripe for a biopic. “I’m also a direct descendant of the first-ever female pirate, Grace O’Malley,” she said. “The first-ever female pirate was an Irish woman who led ships full of men.”
ADVOCATE – Rule-busting bisexual writer Colette gets the attention she deserves in the new film from out director Wash Westmoreland (Still Alice), set to be released September 21. Keira Knightley steps into the titular role in Colette, as the woman behind the Claudine novels who enthralled Belle Epoque-era Paris — even if her husband, Willy (played by Dominic West), took all of the credit. Colette was brash, sexy, and way ahead of her time, and her early novels, written under Willy’s name, depicted a young woman’s sexual awakening with kink and verve.
The biopic begins with Colette’s marriage to Willy, her move to Paris from the country, and her rise as a star of any salon she attended. Westmoreland’s film also follows Colette’s sexual awakening as she proclaims and acts on her attraction to other women. Eventually, she and her husband embark on a polyamorous relationship, during which she takes female lovers.
Colette finally settles on one lover in particular, the wealthy Missy (Denise Gough), who dresses in men’s clothes and uses male pronouns.
But beyond portraying Colette’s lively personal life, the film is also a feminist treatise. Not only did Willy take credit for a woman’s work, but he said he had to because a woman’s work wouldn’t sell — a familiar refrain even today.
“Female writers don’t sell. Female directors don’t make films because they’re not going to make money. You get that all the time,” Knightley said in a new featurette on the film. “And we do what we’re told and we follow the rules of our society. And [Colette] very much broke them.”
Referring to the ongoing argument about whether or not women’s art will sell, Knightley said, “She would be as extraordinary today as she was back then.”
The first trailer for Keira’s upcoming role in Colette-directed by Wash Westmoreland debuted on July 11 (sorry for the delay posting it!), and doesn’t it look incredible? This is of course Keira’s first lead role in four years, and it’s so exciting to see her in these type of roles again.
My apologies for the lack of updates, too. I’m slowly working on various aspects of the site behind the scenes, which I can’t wait to share with you. Thank you for the continued patience!
THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – Fox Searchlight has set a date for Keira Knightley’s post-World War II drama, The Aftermath.
The movie, which was directed by James Kent and also stars Alexander Skarsgard and Jason Clarke, is set for limited release on April 26, 2019.
Knightley plays Rachael Morgan, who arrives at the ruins of Hamburg to be reunited with her husband, Lewis (Clarke), a British colonel charged with rebuilding the shattered city. Rachael is surprised to discover that Lewis will share their grand house with its previous owners, a German widower (Alexander Skarsgard) and his troubled daughter.
Ridley Scott exec produced the historical drama under his Scott Free banner.
THE HOLLYWOOD REPORTER – Bleecker Street has filled out its 2018 calender.
The indie distribution company has set the dates for titles that include the Papillon remake, Keira Knightley period piece Colette and drama Leave No Trace.
Bleecker Street has moved the nationwide release date for Jon Hamm political thriller Beirut up two days, from April 13 to April 11, and has pushed up the limited release of On Chesil Beach nearly a month, to May 18.
Papillon — the Rami Malek-Charlie Hunnam remake of the Steve McQueen-Dustin Hoffman two-hander — will open nationwide on Aug. 24, nearly a year after its TIFF debut. The Slender Man thriller and Keanu Reeves sci-fi film Replicas are also set to open on that date.
Bleecker Street has also dated all of its Sundance acquisitions, beginning with Leave No Trace, which will hit theaters in a limited release on June 29. The Ben Foster-starrer will open the same weekend as the Sicario sequel.
Knightley’s Colette is set for a limited Sept. 21 release, opening the same weekend as Taron Egerton’s Robin Hood. And fellow Sundance feature What They Had, starring Hillary Swank and Michael Shannon, will open on Oct. 12 in a limited release.
In a romantic new video for the single “Let Her Love In,” Righton enlisted his wife, Keira Knightley, to make a rather rosy cameo. The video was shot on an iPhone in the South of France, and Righton directed and edited the footage himself. Watch it below: