Olivia Wilde Talks Directing Career Amid ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ Drama – The Hollywood Reporter
Olivia Wilde was honored as one of Elle‘s Women in Hollywood at the magazine’s celebration in Los Angeles on Monday night, and during her speech opened up about some of what she experienced during the Don’t Worry Darling press tour and its aftermath.
The Warner Bros. film, of course, was at the center of many stories about the complicated relationships between Wilde, her stars Florence Pugh and Harry Styles, and Shia LaBeouf, who originally held Styles’ role. The drama came to a head during Don’t Worry Darling’s premiere in Venice, where the internet was convinced Styles spit on costar Chris Pine.
“I was an actress who started producing and then finally got the courage to start directing, and wouldn’t have started any of it at all if I knew Twitter would be invented,” Wilde noted during her speech at the Getty Center. “But here I am and it’s a real thrill to have what is undeniably the greatest job on the planet.”
The director admitted that sometimes it’s not easy to keep going. “Sometimes it’s tempting to excuse ourselves from the burning hellfire of the misogyny that defines this business and say ‘Goodnight, good luck, I’d rather eat glass for a living,’” she said but added that women in the entertainment industry don’t let each other give up, and she’d recently gotten encouragement from other Hollywood ladies in “the form of a tight grip of your shoulders and a tense stare into your eyes and a defiant, ‘Do not let them fuck with you.’ And it’s always really tempting to reply, ‘Well if I didn’t know things were bad before, I do now.’”
Wilde said that at events like Elle‘s Women in Hollywood — where she was honored alongside Ariana DeBose, Anne Hathaway, Issa Rae, Zoe Kravitz, Sydney Sweeney, Sigourney Weaver and Michelle Yeoh — she felt “motivated to keep fighting through the hellfire. In some way, the challenges are all a part of it, right, real badges of honor are just par for the course.”
“Let’s face it, you’re not a woman in Hollywood until you’ve begged to be placed into a medically induced coma until your press tour is finished. Until then, you are just a woman residing in or around the Hollywood area,” she continued. “I love my life, I love my job, what more could I ask for,” teasing she would only add a solo cover rather than being one of eight honorees.
Two of her film’s stars were also in attendance to reference the craziness surrounding its release: Nick Kroll, who hosted the event, and Kate Berlant, who presented Wilde with her honor.
“For those of you who don’t know me, I’m probably best known as the least interesting part of the Don’t Worry Darling press tour,” Kroll joked, later adding, “Spoiler alert, the movie has a big surprise twist ending where it’s revealed that we had a great time making it.”
As Wilde teased, “this might surprise all of you but the hardest part of the Don’t Worry Darling experience was actually trimming Kate’s jokes because they were so funny, and we weren’t trying to make it funny,” Berlant also came to the defense of her director, noting that what was lost in the media frenzy was that the movie was a box office hit.
“I don’t know what that kind of tabloid attention feels like, it seems absolutely terrifying,” Berlant continued. “I personally would be reduced to ash, truly. But Olivia handles all of it with such grace and charm and grit, I’ll never get over it.”