In An Interview With Salon’s Andrew O’Hehir …
… the comely English actress speaks at length about her turn in director David Cronenberg’s “A Dangerous Method,” which chronicles the relationship between a woman named Sabina Spielrein, who once came between famed analysts Carl Jung (Michael Fassbender) and Sigmund Freud (Viggo Mortensen).
The film has its American debut at the New York Film Festival this week and Knightley, who’s probably best known for her work on the “Pirates of the Caribbean” franchise spoke at length with O’Hehir about preparing for her role.
For my money, Knightley was at her best in last year’s “Never Let Me Go,” but has assembled an impressive and eclectic body of work over her brief career.
But here’s the headline. It says a lot about what young actresses have to think about when they appear nude onscreen at a time when those scenes appear on the Web almost instantaneously:
Q: So let’s talk about the sex scenes in this movie, if we may. That’s certainly going to get a lot of attention, because you and Michael Fassbender are playing one of the first famous S/M relationships. It’s restrained and not all that salacious, but there’s no denying some people may find it arousing …
Knightley: “Yeah. I don’t know if they will, though. I mean, it’s certainly not shot like that, and that was one of the reasons why I thought I was all right doing that. I didn’t want it to be sexy, in that kind of voyeuristic way. David was very clear about that, it has to be a reflection of that brutality, that side of her. It has to be part of the character, and he wanted it to be clinical. Particularly in the age of the Internet and everything, you have to ask a lot of questions about whether it’s relevant, what the downsides and upsides are of doing something like that. I nearly turned it down because of that, and it wasn’t until I’d spoken to David to ask, “OK, what is this, and how are we doing it?” that I actually went, all right, I can do that as long as it’s not a sexy spanking scene.”
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