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Margot Robbie Calls Filming 'Babylon’ „The Best Experience of My Life”, First Reactions Are Out

Margot Robbie in Babylon

Margot Robbie plays Nellie LaRoy in Babylon from Paramount Pictures.

Perhaps one of the quietest Oscar contenders so far, Babylon has been surrounded by a lot of secrecy for a long time, which might seem ironic given the fact that the script leaked very early on. But now, as we enter the final month ahead of the movie’s release, the marketing campaign is in full swing, and some critics have already seen the final product.

 

As part of the movie’s promotion, Margot Robbie, who leads the ensemble as Nellie LaRoy, a late 1920s Hollywood superstar who was heavily inspired by Clara Bow, gave an insightful interview with Vanity Fair where she opened up about filming the movie and her career as a whole. Babylon will be a cocaine-filled journey through the transition between silent films and talkies towards the tail-end of the 1920s, and will follow the depravation of the industry when they were starting to realize what they could become without being tied by any rules.

 

Robbie might have been born to play the part, as she reminds many of the people that have worked with her of a classic movie star from the first few decades of Hollywood, including Allison Janney, who compared her to Katharine Hepburn, or Martin Scorsese himself, who compared her to Carole Lombard and Joan Crawford:

 

“Like Lombard, she’s vivacious, strikingly beautiful, and she has a great sense of humor, about herself most of all. Like Crawford, she’s completely grounded and instantly commanding—she enters the frame and you pay attention to her.”

 

Babylon

Jovan Adepo in Babylon

 

Babylon‘s writer/director Damien Chazelle also had nothing but nice things to say about his lead actress:

 

“Margot’s able to tap into this wildness and this bravado where you don’t know what’s going to come, and it keeps surprising you. Usually when you think of actors with that kind of raw energy, it’s an unschooled energy. With Margot, that’s not the case at all.”

 

Robbie, who came across as quite humble and reserved to Vanity Fair‘s Rebecca Ford, described Babylon as the best experience of her life:

 

“What you see onscreen is the chaos of making a movie and how fucked it is, but also how it’s just the greatest thing ever. And, literally, filming it was the exact same thing. Shit was so unhinged and so fun and amazing and just absurd. It was definitely the best experience of my life.”

 

Margot Robbie in Babylon

Margot Robbie in Damien Chazelle’s Babylon

 

The actress revealed that her primary source of information when trying to prepare for a role is to go back to the character’s childhood and build it from there. She said the following about prepping for Nellie LaRoy:

 

“Whenever I’m trying to make a character, I have to figure out their childhood. I can justify anything they do later in life if I just figure that out. [Clara Bow] had probably the most horrific childhood I can imagine for anyone. You can justify anything Nellie does and says in this movie if you imagine that she experienced something like that as a kid.”

 

And she really got into character. According to her co-star Diego Calva, the dance sequence that is featured in the trailers and seen in the image above, required Robbie to dance for eight hours straight in two consecutive days. By the end, the entire crew applauded her. Said Calva:

 

“She just gave everything she had. Everything’s raw. She’s a fearless actress.”

 

Margot Robbie leads Babylon

Diego Calva in Babylon

 

In Babylon, Robbie appears in a couple of scenes with fewer clothes than normal. That’s not something that concerns her, though, as she told Vanity Fair:

 

“I don’t really have a whole lot of modesty left. I don’t feel embarrassed when it’s Nellie doing something. I’d feel embarrassed if it was me, but it’s all her.”

 

The first reactions to the movie came out after a screening earlier this week, and it seems like it is a lot. They are quite polarized for now, as one could have expected just by seeing the trailer, and here are some of them, both good and bad:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Babylon will open in North American theaters on December 25. You can check out the trailer here:

 

 

 



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