Ana de Armas has had a good few years in Hollywood recently. From getting rave reviews for her turn as a holographic love interest in Blade Runner 2049, to taking center stage in the star-studded mystery thriller Knives Out, de Armas has become one of the industry's hottest talents. In a recent interview, the actress revealed that her upcoming role as Marilyn Monroe in the biopic Blonde proved especially difficult due to the new accent that had to be mastered.
"I tried! It only took me nine months of dialect coaching, and practicing, and some ADR sessions. It was a big torture, so exhausting. My brain was fried."
Marilyn Monroe is one of the most iconic figures in Hollywood history, whose story has taken on mythical proportions in the minds of fans. Playing such a character naturally places a great burden of expectations on de Armas' shoulders. While she will be playing the role of an actress who made her place in the industry decades earlier, Ana de Armas noted that there are some strong parallels between her own current career and the path that Monroe had to navigate.
"I had a lot of thoughts as a woman in the industry, and even in general, about how things from the 1930s, 1940s, 1950s are so relatable to nowadays. And how if you don't have a strong base, with your family and so on, it's really hard to make it through - really hard."
The casting process for Blonde has been an arduous one. Naomi Watts was originally slated to take on the lead role of Marilyn Monroe before she was replaced by Jessica Chastain, who exited the part soon afterward, which is when de Armas finally got her shot. Even then, de Armas revealed in a past interview that many people involved in the production did not want a Latina to play Monroe, and she had to undergo a grueling string of auditions before she landed the part, which she believes was worth it in order to force Hollywood to change how it views the casting of minority actors.
"I'm not going to let anybody or anything tell me I cannot dream of playing Marilyn Monroe. Things need to change [in the industry] but you have to actively push for change too... you have to present your version of the character in a different way. You have to challenge... [Praparing to play the characater] was very intense. There was so much information; everybody has a story about Marilyn. I've never had to prepare for something so specific, play someone so well-known and one of the most photographed people in the world. I looked through all the books, the movies, the theories about her death and it took me forever. And then of course I had to work on the accent, the voice. It was a lot of work."
Directed by Andrew Dominik, from a screenplay by Dominik, based on the novel Blonde by Joyce Carol Oates, the movie Blonde stars Ana de Armas, Adrien Brody, Bobby Cannavale, and Julianne Nicholson.
The first quotes in this story first appeared at The Times. Additional reporting arrives to us from Flaunt.com.