The Help: set report from Mississippi - Telegraph
Skeeter (Emma Stone), a product of one of those genteel families who returns Posted by Bob Ritzema under courage, movies, relationships, religion Aibileen and the other maids, including her best friend Minny Jackson cause, and being excluded from the job market by vindictive former employers. Through writing and storytelling, Skeeter, Aibileen, and Minny all dare to challenge the ads that Skeeter looks at, how would you describe the job market for women in town? How would you analyze Skeeter's relationship with her mother?. A would-be writer, Skeeter is the one asking Aibileen all those the ways American movies portray race relations during the struggle for civil.
Because your character is much more reserved and emotionally conflicted, was it also difficult to find a balance, so that audiences could connect to her?
It was very difficult, yeah. We always get the shit end of the stick.
Flashy characters are more entertaining to people because you get it. But, at the same time, how we feel and how it shows through your eyes is a beautiful thing on film. Meryl Streep is a perfect example of that. You have to keep in character and know that the pay-off is that, when you string it altogether, what you see is a total human being. I want to see a human being. I want to be entertained by recognizing that person as someone that I know and someone who is multi-faceted.
What was it like to balance that quiet performance with Emma Stone and Octavia Spencer, whose personalities are so strong in the film? Was it fun to get to play with them? No characters are the same. And, each character balances the other character.
Minny balances Aibileen out because she keeps her light and she saves her from caving into her grief. Even in theater, people are not so much into creating characters anymore. People who are alone all the time never grow. Those hermits just stay the same. Relationships change us and make us grow.
How did you develop the chemistry that sustained itself through the movie? We all loved each other. I think I got acting training, so I can just fake it. How was it to work with Tate Taylor, who was so passionate about this project? First of all, Tate is the best collaborator. It probably comes from growing up in the South and being new to it all. He really fights for what he believes in.
He fought for Octavia in this role. Not a lot of people would do that.
Aibileen's relationship to Skeeter. by Trang Tran on Prezi
Did the Academy Award nomination you got for Doubt change the scripts and offers you got? Yeah, Doubt really changed the course of my career.
- Viola Davis Exclusive Interview THE HELP
I get wonderful offers. I have no complaints. Well, yeah, I do have complaints. I need some sleep! I have to tell you, the only thing an Oscar nomination gives you is more stress. People have a whole different set of expectations for you because that Oscar nomination precedes you in the room. Whatever you see me in is usually the biggest role for a black actress that year. For some people, it will. Someone else comes up, all the time, and you have to understand that there are other really talented people.
I would absolutely love that! That would be my dream. I would love that. Now his grave is scattered with empty liquor bottles and beer cans, the usual tribute to the hard-living icon. Church is the weekly hub of Aibileen and Minny's little community, and from inside comes a towering, soaring southern voice.
The choir sways fervently in their primrose yellow robes, singing Victory is Mine — 'Ah told Satan, get thee behind me…' and the congregation, in their vivid Sunday best, wave their fans frantically against the heat. The song begins again. Oyelowo is from Brixton, though you would never know from his thick, chewy Southern accent. After the scene, when he comes outside for a drink, someone asks him if he's done this kind of thing before. Prominently parked outside the church is Pastor Green's turquoise Chrysler New Yorker, just one of a swath of beautiful lates and earlys cars, one or two provided by enthusiastic locals.
Everyone in town has embraced this film. But some have been a bit bemused. One night when the film crew were shooting, with huge floodlights lighting up a house and the street blocked off, a woman asked curiously, 'Whas happenin' up there? They raidin' a crystal meth lab again? Stockett is here with her eight-year-old daughter, Lila, who has a small part in the film. Stockett ends up staying for most of the shoot. It took her five years to write, and by the time she showed it to Taylor it had been rejected by 60 agents.
Viola Davis THE HELP Interview | Collider
She waited anxiously to see what he thought, but he loved it right away and told her that even if it never got published it would make a great film. A year after publication the tables were turned, and when I interviewed Stockett in March she was waiting to read Taylor's film script. Tate and I have always been pretty gentle with each other about our writing, but I didn't know how I was going to be gentle if I didn't like it, but it was amazing. Tate had read the book 14 times and I've read his script about nine times, and now sometimes we argue about who wrote what.
I ask him what he was doing there. It is Christopher Columbus. He tells me how his daughter went to school with Taylor's niece, who came over to their house in San Francisco one day bringing a short film, Chicken People, made by her Uncle Tate 'I pimped her out,' Taylor will tell me later.
I asked my wife to look at it. She said, you've got to read this. And it is a phenomenal book. But after seeing some of the scenes he had shot, DreamWorks' trust in Taylor was justified and mostly Columbus just sticks around because he's having such a good time. It's been an unbelievably friendly set, enhanced by everyone being locked into what the production designer Mark Ricker calls 'this little Bermuda triangle of the South.
There's no movie theatre, no Starbucks — so we all just hang out, go swimming, go on road trips. There's been bugs, there's been heat — but it's been a really bonding experience. So I'm just trying to take it day by day. But it's a short drive. And if the police stop me, they'll just escort me home.
They've already promised not to arrest anyone.
The Help: set report from Mississippi
She will be appearing as a member of the Junior League. But my costume is pretty. I'm not a purple person normally, but I have asked for hair as big as they can get it. There are boxes of control-top pantyhose and girdles, and tables covered in hats. An elaborate peach-coloured dress hangs in state, with a note attached confirming that it belongs to Brunson Green's grandmother, and a photograph of her wearing it.
Stockett goes to be fitted while I examine the hot-pink stilettos and a rack of raunchy clothing destined for Celia Foote, who is lower than white trash and is looked down upon by the members of the Junior League. She is played in the film by Jessica Chastain, who has to be made artificially voluptuous for the role with strategic padding. Sharen Davis and her team are fine-tuning the details of kitting out 28 Junior Leaguers for this afternoon's scene.
Davis is the costume designer, twice nominated for Academy Awards Ray and Dreamgirls. She grew up in Louisiana and her grandmother was a maid. Davis had read The Help and loved it. I've never worked so hard to get a movie before. I wanted to make the ladies of the Junior League look like a bouquet of flowers when you see them together. These characters were so young. In the end the look came from Seventeen magazine. Stockett emerges from the fitting room in a lilac linen ensemble with a scalloped neckline.
There is discussion about whether she need wear the matching jacket. The co-producer Sonia Lunsford appears — she has also been drafted in to play a Junior Leaguer, a pregnant one, which is something of a joke among the cast because she is a lesbian.