Creative freedom, Austen and California: Bill Nighy and Autumn de Wilde discuss Emma
For Autumn de Wilde’s first feature debut, she tackles Emma, a romantic comedy based on Jane Austen’s classic novel. Upper-class Emma Woodhouse (Anya Taylor-Joy) is adored by men in the neighbourhood, all of whom practically swoon at her feet. Her main interest, however, is meddling in her friend’s love lives, rather than taking an interest in her own – that is, until one man catches her attention: neighbour George Knightley (Johnny Flynn).
The Upcoming’s film critic Guy Lambert caught up with Wilde and Bill Nighy, who plays Woodhouse’s health-obsessed father.
Nighy admits he had never read the novel before, nor had he taken much interest in Austen’s work prior to his involvement in Emma. He was primarily drawn to the project through his appreciation of Wilde’s work and directorial vision. He talks here about her enthusiasm for the film, having a lot of creative freedom to create a unique character, and what makes a good actor.
Wilde discusses the film’s whirlwind beginning, why she was drawn to Emma’s complicated character, and her obsession with all things English while she was growing up in California.
Emma is released nationwide on 14th February 2020. Read our review of Emma here.
Watch the trailer for Emma here: