Collider | Taissa Farmiga Explains Why She Had a Hard Time with Her ‘Gilded Age’ Audition Until Something Special Clicked

Farmiga also reveals the project that solidified her passion for acting.



I’ve been lucky enough to cross paths with Taissa Farmiga quite a bit over the years for interviews, but a Collider Ladies Night conversation is different. Farmiga’s had a one-of-a-kind journey in this industry and during our 40-minute chat, we covered as much of it as possible leading up to her latest project, the HBO series, The Gilded Age.

From Downton Abbey creator Julian Fellowes, The Gilded Age kicks off in the United States in 1882, a time that involved a significant conflict between old money and new ways of amassing enormous fortunes. In the Upper East Side of New York City, the former group includes the Van Rhijn household, led by Christine Baranski’s Agnes van Rhijn. Agnes holds tight to the past and keeps an eye out for newcomers who don’t belong, like her new neighbors the Russells.

That’s where we meet Farmiga’s character, Gladys Russell. She’s the teenage daughter of George (Morgan Spector) and Bertha (Carrie Coon). At this point, Gladys should have made her society debut, but Bertha refuses to let Gladys out of lockdown until she can fill her massive ballroom for the occasion. Trouble is, given that the Russells are new to the area, Bertha is finding it rather difficult to earn a place in the local elite social circle.

During our Collider Ladies Night chat, we went back to the beginning for Farmiga. Even though it’s quite clear she’s oozing with raw talent, Farmiga initially had minimal interest in acting. Even when her sister, Vera Farmiga, encouraged her to join the cast of her directorial debut, High Ground, she agreed to do so more for the experience, not necessarily for a passion for acting.

“For me I have such an interesting start with it because I don’t think the ‘aha moment’ of I need this in my life came until I was already working a bit. My older sister Vera’s obviously an actress and she directed her first film, this indie film called Higher Ground 10, 11 years ago, and it was my first job when I was 15, and it was to play the younger version of her character. I think I filmed the movie [in] eight days. She asked me to be in it and it was more just because I looked like her and she asked me to. I couldn’t say no. I was like, ‘Okay, this is a cool experience,’ and then after that I went back to my normal life.”

“Normal life” didn’t last much longer after that. Higher Ground made its way to the Sundance Film Festival and the industry took notice of Farmiga’s work. But even then, it’d take a little more time for Farmiga to come to the realization that she didn’t just enjoy acting, it was something she needed and she was determined to pour everything she had into her craft.

“I think it was the first time I worked with an acting coach, and it was for In the Valley of Violence. I was a little nervous because the character was a little bit bigger than anything I’ve done. In the Valley of Violence is done by Ti West who’s a great horror director, but it was kind of like a weird hipster Western movie, and it was the first time where I got to see how someone — not just going on natural instincts. You break down the scene, you break down the emotions and to me, the emotions started feeling like a mathematical equation. It was like, ‘Oh, if you had this and you’re feeling this and you add a little bit of this person’s response,’ you know? It kind of felt like an equation to me and I loved that. And it was after working with the coach and really building up my skills to do this job because, sure, you have natural instincts, but if you don’t work at it, if you don’t practice and if you don’t learn how to properly start approaching a scene, you can only run for so long. I had the natural part of it, but once I got the book smart part of it, it really just sort of cemented, ‘I’m so f*cking lucky. This is it! This is what I want to do!’ I don’t know what it was. By the end of the job I was like, ‘Oh, I want to hold onto this. I need to do everything I can to work hard and be able to keep moving forward.’”

A little over five years later, that drive and willingness to grow hasn’t changed. In fact, you can see Farmiga’s ability to learn from her experiences on full display in her story about her Gilded Age audition. Originally, Farmiga auditioned for the role of Marion Brook, now played by Louisa Jacobson. But there was absolutely no defeat in that for Farmiga, rather, an ability to recognize when something doesn’t quite click and make the necessary pivot for the better. She explained:

“When I was auditioning for it, I had a hard time. I remember I read once with my husband. I didn’t like the tape … I tried to make the self-tape twice and I wasn’t happy with it. I don’t know why I wasn’t clicking or responding to Marion. I sent in a tape and I was like, ‘I feel fine about it. It is what it is.’ And then casting, the producers they really liked it, but it was like, ‘It’s clearly not right for Marion, but we really, really like you. Will you read this character?’ And I was like, ‘Okay! Why not?’ I was down to try it because, again, perfectionist, I felt like, not that I failed at the other tape, but I was like, I didn’t fully connect. So I was happy to have a second shot with Gladys and that taped in two seconds and I was like, ‘Oh, I know this girl. She’s so many versions of 16, 17-year-old Taissa.’”

You can see Farmiga shining in the role of Gladys on The Gilded Age every Monday on HBO. If you’re looking for even more on Farmiga’s journey from thinking she wanted to be an accountant as a teenager to joining the American Horror Story ensemble and more, check out her episode of Collider Ladies Night at the top of this article or listen to our full 40-minute conversation uncut in podcast form below.

Source: Collider

The Gilded Age | Official Trailer #1


In a new world, a new age is about to begin. The Gilded Age begins in 1882 with young Marian Brook (Jacobson) moving from rural Pennsylvania to New York City after the death of her father to live with her thoroughly old money aunts Agnes van Rhijn (Baranski) and Ada Brook (Nixon). Exposed to a world on the brink of the modern age, will Marian follow the established rules of society, or forge her own path?

The Gilded Age debuts Monday January 24 on HBO and will be available to stream on HBO Max.

New Series Project: American Horror Stories

Sundance Film Festival 2021 Lineup Announced

Sundance Film Festival 2021 Lineup Announced

Taking place January 28 through February 3 next year, the 2021 Sundance Film Festival will look quite different than ever before. After unveiling their screening plans, featuring a new online platform, drive-ins, screenings at independent arthouses around the country, and more, the lineup has now arrived.

The full 2021 slate of works includes 72 feature-length films, representing 29 countries and 38 first-time feature filmmakers. These films were selected from 14,092 submissions including 3,500 feature-length films. Of the feature film submissions, 1,377 were from the U.S. and 2,132 were international.

Check out the lineup below.

U.S. Dramatic Competition

The 10 films in this section are all world premieres.

Coda (Director and Screenwriter: Siân Heder, Producers: Philippe Rousselet, Fabrice Gianfermi, Patrick Wachsberger) — As a CODA – Child of Deaf Adults – Ruby is the only hearing person in her deaf family. When the family’s fishing business is threatened, Ruby finds herself torn between pursuing her love of music and her fear of abandoning her parents. Cast: Emilia Jones, Eugenio Derbez, Troy Kotsur, Ferdia Walsh-Peelo, Daniel Durant, and Marlee Matlin. DAY ONE

I Was a Simple Man (Director and Screenwriter: Christopher Makoto Yogi, Producers: Sarah S. Kim, Christopher Makoto Yogi, Matthew Petock, Yamato Cibulka) — As a family in Hawai’i faces the imminent death of their eldest, the ghosts of the past haunt the countryside. Cast: Steve Iwamoto, Constance Wu, Kanoa Goo, Chanel Akiko Hirai, Tim Chiou, Boonyanudh Jiyarom.

Jockey (Director: Clint Bentley, Screenwriters: Clint Bentley, Greg Kwedar, Producers: Clint Bentley, Greg Kwedar, Nancy Schafer) — An aging jockey is determined to win one last championship, but his dream is complicated when a young rookie shows up claiming to be his son. Cast: Clifton Collins Jr., Molly Parker, Moises Arias.

John and the Hole (Director: Pascual Sisto, Screenwriter: Nicolás Giacobone, Producers: Elika Portnoy, Alex Orlovsky, Mike Bowes) — A nontraditional coming-of-age story, set in the unsettling reality of John, a kid who holds his family captive in a hole in the ground. Cast: Charlie Shotwell, Michael C. Hall, Jennifer Ehle, Taissa Farmiga.

Mayday (Director and Screenwriter: Karen Cinorre, Producers: Jonah Disend, Lucas Joaquin, Karen Cinorre, Sam Levy) — Ana is transported to a dreamlike and dangerous land where she joins a team of female soldiers engaged in a never-ending war along a rugged coast. Though she finds strength in this exhilarating world, she comes to realize that she’s not the killer they want her to be. Cast: Grace Van Patten, Mia Goth, Havana Rose Liu, Soko, Théodore Pellerin, Juliette Lewis.

On the Count of Three (Director: Jerrod Carmichael, Screenwriters: Ari Katcher, Ryan Welch, Producers: David Carrico, Adam Paulsen, Tom Werner, Jake Densen, Ari Katcher, Jimmy Price) — Two guns. Two best friends. And a pact to end their lives when the day is done. Cast: Jerrod Carmichael, Christopher Abbott, Tiffany Haddish, J.B. Smoove, Lavell Crawford, Henry Winkler.

Passing (Director and Screenwriter: Rebecca Hall, Producers: Forest Whitaker, Nina Yang Bongiovi, Margot Hand, Rebecca Hall) — Two African-American women who can “pass” as white choose to live on opposite sides of the color line in 1929 New York in an exploration of racial and gender identity, performance, obsession and repression. Based on the novella by Nella Larsen. Cast: Tessa Thompson, Ruth Negga, André Holland, Alexander Skarsgård, Bill Camp.

Superior (Director: Erin Vassilopoulos, Screenwriters: Erin Vassilopoulos, Alessandra Mesa, Producers: Benjamin Cohen, Grant Curatola, Patrick Donovan) — On the run, Marian returns to her hometown in upstate New York to hide out with her estranged identical twin sister, Vivian. Struggling to put the past behind her, Marian lies about the reason for her return, leaving her sister in the dark until their two worlds begin to collide. Cast: Alessandra Mesa, Ani Mesa, Pico Alexander, Jake Hoffman, Stanley Simons.

Together Together (Director and Screenwriter: Nikole Beckwith, Producers: Anthony Brandonisio, Daniela Taplin Lundberg, Tim Headington) — When young loner Anna is hired as the surrogate for Matt, a single man in his 40s, the two strangers come to realize this unexpected relationship will quickly challenge their perceptions of connection, boundaries and the particulars of love. Cast: Ed Helms, Patti Harrison, Tig Notaro, Julio Torres, Anna Konkle.

Wild Indian (Director and Screenwriter: Lyle Mitchell Corbine Jr., Producers: Lyle Mitchell Corbine Jr., Thomas Mahoney, Eric Tavitian) — Two men are inextricably bound together after covering up the savage murder of a schoolmate. After years of separation following wildly divergent paths, they must finally confront how their traumatic secret has irrevocably shaped their lives. Cast: Michael Greyeyes, Chaske Spencer, Jesse Eisenberg, Kate Bosworth, Phoenix Wilson, Julian Gopal.

Read more here.

Source: The Film Stage

Teen Vogue: “American Horror Story” Actor Taissa Farmiga Marries Hadley Klein

“Married my best friend.”

American Horror Story star Taissa Farmiga has a surprise: she’s married!

The actor announced her nuptials with now-husband Hadley Klein on Instagram this weekend, sharing that they actually said “I do” months ago — on August 8, in fact. “Married my best friend,” Taissa wrote alongside a cute pic of the couple posing with their pretty wedding cake courtesy of L.A. pastry chef Nicole Bakes Cakes. In the photo, Taissa wears a delicate eyelet-embroidered off-white dress with dainty sleeves, which she paired with a bridal face mask — a wedding accessory of These Times. She’s showing off her ring-adorned finger, while Hadley wears all black, plus a drop of cake frosting on his face.

Eagle-eyed fans might have already guessed at the couple’s relationship status, because they haven’t kept it a total secrt. The screenwriter has even referred to Taissa as his wife on social media, particularly in a birthday ‘gram he posted back in August. “Happy, happy birthday to my superhotbutalsocool wife,” he wrote at the time. “So happy to have an ‘excuse’ to stuff our faces full of birthday sweets all week.” And, as noted by E! News, Hadley left a comment on a video of Taissa dancing to celebrate President-Elect Joe Biden’s victory earlier this month, writing: “WAIT i’m married to those moves????? daaaaaaam.”

Still, it’s understandable if fans missed the subtle references to their wedding, especially if they weren’t following Taissa’s now-husband, and the overt wedding picture was definitely cause for celebration. Plenty of Taissa’s followers and fellow celebs flocked to the comments to share their support and well-wishes, including fellow AHS stars Billie Lourd and Leslie Grossman, the latter of whom wrote: “This makes me so happy!! So many mazels to you guys.” On Twitter, AHS actor Gabby Sidibe added: “TAIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII!!!!!!!! Congratulations!!!!!! Pictures of you standing next to cake have always been my fave and this 1 is the best! Congratulations to you and Hadley!!!”

Source: Teen Vogue

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New Project Series: HBO’s “The Gilded Age”

‘The Gilded Age’: Harry Richardson, Thomas Cocquerel & Jack Gilpin Join HBO Drama Series

EXCLUSIVE: Harry Richardson (Poldark), Thomas Cocquerel (Alive) and Jack Gilpin (Billions) are set as series regulars in Julian Fellowes’ The Gilded Age drama series at HBO. The project is a co-production between HBO and Universal TV.

The fictional epic of the millionaire titans of New York City in the 1880s hails from the Downton Abbey team of Fellowes, producer Gareth Neame and director Michael Engler. They join previously announced series regulars Christine Baranski, Cynthia Nixon, Amanda Peet, Morgan Spector, Denée Benton, Louisa Jacobson, Taissa Farmiga, Blake Ritson and Simon Jones.

Created, written and executive produced by Fellowes, The Gilded Age centers on a period of immense economic change in America, of huge fortunes made and lost and the rise of disparity between old money and new. Against this backdrop of change, the story begins in 1882 – introducing young Marian Brook, the orphaned daughter of a Southern general who moves into the home of her rigidly conventional aunts in New York City. Accompanied by the mysterious Peggy Scott, an African-American woman masquerading as her maid, Marian gets caught up in the dazzling lives of her stupendously rich neighbors, led by a ruthless railroad tycoon and his ambitious wife struggling for acceptance by the Astor and Vanderbilt set. Will Marian follow the established rules of society or forge her own path in this exciting new world that is on the brink of transformation into the modern age?

Richardson will play Larry Russell. Appealing and good natured with an easy charm, Larry is a recent Harvard graduate eager to make his way in the world. Above all, Larry is his mother’s child, her Achilles’ heel, the one person she loves without limit. And he loves her as well. He is protective of his little sister, Gladys, and like her he is a classic child of the rich. He thinks he doesn’t care about money, because he has always had plenty of it.

Cocquerel is Tom Raikes, a sensible young lawyer from Doylestown, PA. He’s been a solitary and career-driven practical man but is smitten when he meets Marian, his late client’s orphaned daughter. He relocates to New York City in pursuit of a relationship with her. Tom understands that Marian’s family, specifically her two aunts, are very conservative, and he’s careful not to overstep any boundaries along the way. He’ll put up a fight to get what he wants, but he’s an appealing, charming gentleman above all else.

Gilpin portrays Church, the Russell family’s butler. He is American, from a dismal background, but evades his past by excelling at his job. He has no time for nonsense in the workplace due to his attention and care for his job. Above all, he is Bertha’s ally, and he intends to stay reasonably true to her every step of the way, unlike her own maid.

Fellowes, Neame, Engler and David Crockett executive produce, and Engler also directs.

Richardson played the role of Drake Carne for three seasons on BBC One’s Poldark. Most recently he was seen in six-part TV series Total Control for Blackfella Films in Australia, alongside Rachel Griffiths and Deborah Mailman, an official selection in the Television section of the 2019 Toronto Film Festival. Richardson is repped by Hamilton Hodell, ICM and Morrissey Management.

Cocquerel recently wrapped shooting Escape Room 2 for Sony Pictures Entertainment. He most recently was seen as the lead in the independent feature Alive opposite Angus MacFayden, as well as playing the leads in In Like Flynn, an Australian/US co-production, and the independent film The Divorce Party. On the television side, he just wrapped a season-long arc on the CW’s The 100. Cocquerel is repped by CAA, Management 360 and Shanahan (Australia).

Gilpin most recently was seen as Sean Ayles on Billions, and he also has appeared Madam Secretary, The Night Of and The Good Wife, among others. His film credits include, Adventureland, 21, Quiz Show, The Juror and Something Wild. Gilpin is represented by Buchwald.

Source: Deadline

New Project: Sam Raimi’s Series “50 States of Fright”

Full Details: Sam Raimi’s Series “50 States of Fright” for Quibi Will Star Christina Ricci and Taissa Farmiga!

Executive produced by Sam Raimi, Quibi‘s upcoming horror series “50 States of Fright” is based on urban legends from different states, and we’ve got full details for ya today.

And yes, Raimi is directing one of the episodes!

From the press release…

Quibi and Gunpowder & Sky’s new horror brand, ALTER, along with DIGA Studios and POD 3 announced today that Rachel Brosnahan, Travis Fimmel, Christina Ricci, Jacob Batalon, Ming-Na Wen, Taissa Farmiga, Asa Butterfield, John Marshall Jones and Ron Livingston will each star in an episode of the upcoming horror anthology series, “50 States of Fright.” The first season of “50 States of Fright” will explore stories based on urban legends from Colorado, Florida, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Oregon and Washington taking viewers deeper into the horrors that lurk just beneath the surface of our country.

Rachel Brosnahan (“The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel”), Travis Fimmel (“Vikings”, Warcraft: The Beginning) and John Marshall Jones (The Last Revolutionary, “Rectify”) are set to star in “The Golden Arm” based on a famous urban legend out of Michigan, co-written by Sam Raimi (Spider Man, Army of Darkness, The Evil Dead) and Ivan Raimi (Army of Darkness, Drag Me to Hell, Darkman) and directed by Sam Raimi.

Christina Ricci (“Monster,” “Z: The Beginning of Everything”) and Jacob Batalon (Spiderman: Homecoming, Spiderman: Far From Home) will play lead roles in “Red Rum,” which follows the storyline of Colorado’s scariest story.

Ming-Na Wen (“Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D,” “The Mandalorian”) is signed on to star in “America’s Largest Ball of Twine,” based on Kansas myth.

Taissa Farmiga (The Nun, “American Horror Story”) and Ron Livingston (“Loudermilk,” “A Million Little Things”) are set to co-star in “Almost There,” Iowa’s frightening folklore, which will be written and directed by Iowa natives Scott Beck & Bryan Woods (A Quiet Place, Haunt).

Asa Butterfield (“Sex Education”, “Hugo”) is cast as the male lead in “Grey Cloud Island” a chilling tale from Minnesota.

“The driving force for us as a studio is to foster the careers of emerging talent by marrying them with proven innovators,” said Van Toffler, CEO, Gunpowder & Sky. “With ‘50 States of Fright’ we sought out a diverse group of breakthrough performers and fearless horror visionaries and partnered them with Sam Raimi to oversee the creative process. This winning formula ensures we’ll get a s-load of scares.”

Source: Bloody Disgusting

Gallery Update: September 4 | Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Nun” Hollywood Premiere

I’ve updated our photo gallery with 233 pictures of Taissa at Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Nun” Premiere at TCL Chinese Theatre on September 4, 2018 in Hollywood, California. Make sure you check them out by clicking the thumbnails below. Enjoy!



GALLERY LINK
Public Appearances > Public Appearances from 2018 > September 4 | Warner Bros. Pictures’ “The Nun” Hollywood Premiere

Photoshoots for Rogue Magazine

Apologies for the lack of updates. I’ve updated our photo gallery with 10 photoshoots of Taissa for Rogue Magazine Winter 2019. Make sure you check them out by clicking the thumbnails below. Enjoy!


GALLERY LINK
Photoshoots & Portraits > Photoshoots from 2019 > Session #1 – Rogue

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