In an interview, Anya Taylor-Joy gives a quick update on The Northman, which reunites her with The Witch and The Lighthouse director Robert Eggers.
Anya Taylor-Joy says the new movie from The Lighthouse director Robert Eggers is like nothing the world’s ever seen. With production currently underway, The Northman will reunite Eggers with a number of his past collaborators, including Taylor-Joy, while also introducing a number of exciting stars to his filmography.
Since working together on 2015’s The Witch, cinematic debuts for both director and actor, Eggers and Taylor-Joy have had ascendant careers. Eggers followed up his successful first movie with The Lighthouse, which starred Robert Pattinson and Willem Dafoe and premiered at last year’s Cannes Film Festival to further critical acclaim. Taylor-Joy, after giving notable performances in M. Night Shyamalan’s Split and the black comedy Thoroughbreds, has had a stellar 2020, turning heads with her interpretation of Jane Austen’s Emma and her star-turn in the recent Netflix miniseries The Queen’s Gambit. Eggers will take on Vikings next in The Northman, which features Taylor-Joy and Dafoe alongside Alexander Skarsgard (True Blood, Big Little Lies), Nicole Kidman, Ethan Hawke, and Björk.
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In an interview with Collider about The Queen’s Gambit, Taylor-Joy gives fans a little update on The Northman, admitting that she could say more over coffee than in such a formal setting. She starts out by gushing over the success of her now-longtime friend and loses none of her enthusiasm as she transitions into talking about the movie:
Robert and I have now been friends longer than we’ve been co-workers, and getting the opportunity to create art again together is just amazing, incredible. We’ve both grown so much apart and now we get to grow back together, and it’s so beautiful. I will say that I am so proud to be a part of this project. Every moment on set I’m proud, and I think we will be presenting the world with something like it genuinely hasn’t seen before, and I am so genuinely humbled that I get to be a part of it. … People showed up on our set and they were like, “oh okay, so it’s a real Robert Eggers movie,” and I’m like, “Yeah, you’re gonna be cold, you’re never gonna be comfortable, and it’s gonna be amazing.”
As if Eggers fans didn’t have enough reason to be excited about The Northman, these comments from Taylor-Joy are about as positive as they could be. It’s true that actors are paid to promote the movies they feature in, but when someone emphasizes their pride for something during a press junket for an unrelated project, it’s hard not to believe them. That she highlights how other cast members were familiar with his style of filmmaking is particularly encouraging because it means Eggers is already established as a director with a strong creative vision that even big-name stars will surrender themselves to. For those who loved The Lighthouse, a movie as weird as it is mesmerizing, it can only be comforting to know that any movie with his name on it will be the version he intended to make.
Of course, it’s much too early to declare The Northman a masterpiece. Eggers has commented on how this movie has a significantly larger scope than his previous work, and any number of problems could come up between now and its release. Notably, it’s unclear what effect the COVID-19 protocols that have influenced many other productions will have on this one. Filming hasn’t even wrapped yet, so it’s probably best if fans reign in their excitement for now – even if Anya Taylor-Joy has just made that very difficult.
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