Last year, Gabriella did a photoshoot for 1883 magazine (you can check the pics here). In this interview she talks about Carrie and briefly mentions Squatters and Endless Love:
Gabriella Wilde isn’t the chattiest interviewee. In her defence, she has a stonking cold and is currently besieged by a make-up artist and hair stylist- who are both demanding her attention. I’m battling both in order to get her talking but Wilde, whilst not necessarily the most verbose, is behaving like a pro.
This professional calm is her most obvious trait. It’s clear that she takes her job very seriously. That job is now, she is keen to stress, acting. Her modelling days are long behind her and, typical of any actress eager to shake off the ‘model-turned-actress’ moniker, she bristles when the subject is brought up. “I haven’t done modelling since I was 17. I am focussing on acting. Working as a model as such is not something I do anymore. It’s really just the acting.”
This currently means her role in Kimberly Peirce’s remake of Carrie. She auditioned for it in her kitchen in a grainy iphone video filmed by her sister. It obviously did the trick, as she won the role of high-school-mean-girl-with-a guilty-conscience Sue Snell; a pivotal character second only to the top billing of Julianne Moore’s evangelical mother and Chloe Grace Mortez’s titular troubled teen. The remake is one that many might say needn’t have been made, so iconic was Brian DePalma’s 1970s original, yet Wilde, who only watched the De Palma film during shooting, feels theirs is a fresh take. “I think the best way to look at it is to say that they are two different films made from the book. It’s not a remake of the movie. There is a lot that is in the book that is not in the original film but that is in this film. Especially in regard to my character Sue Snell, if you read the book there is a lot of her diary entries and references to her and how she is thinking that isn’t so much in the De Palma movie.”
Having never read Stephen King’s book or watched the original before she started filming gave Wilde a different connection to Sue: “I sort of didn’t really feel like it was someone else’s character. I think it can feel that way so I sort of read the script first and had her in my head as myself.” Wilde, with her impeccable good looks, seems ideally suited to play Sue. Yet, much like Wilde herself, Sue is more than she seems; “She almost starts off as a character that you wouldn’t think would have a big journey but it all slightly unravels.” Stephen King referred to Sue as Carrie’s ‘fairy godmother’- something Wilde agrees with. “She definitely tries to save Carrie. At the beginning she does something terrible to her but she sets out the rest of the movie trying to save her. In a way it’s quite sad but it’s also quite charming that she gets it wrong because she’s just a kid. She doesn’t fully understand what she’s done or how to fix it. A big thing for me, in the movie, was watching Sue take responsibility for what she’d done.”
Sue Snell is a world away from Wilde’s role as corset-clad Constance Bonacieux, in 2010’s big budget remake of The Three Musketeers. She has fond memories of the film but when I mention the costumes a look of agony crosses her face. “Any film I do with normal clothing now I will never complain,” she says, as if imploring casting agents to take note, “It’s a whole different ball game when you’re wearing a corset: you can’t sit down. You can’t eat anything. So you’ll take it off at the end of the day and suddenly feel starving.” Luckily her most recent film, Martin Weisz’s indie filmSquatters, is mercifully corset free. She plays homeless, troubled Kelley; a character that, by all accounts, provided her meatier fare than previous roles. Much like Carrie, it gave her a chance to showcase her American accent, something she wasn’t exactly nervous about: “I audition so much in American that I think it feels quite safe to me. It almost feels quite scary for me to do something in my own accent now. It slightly removes you from yourself and, without doing too much work straight away it helps you find the character.” The film also stars Hollywood great Richard Dreyfuss, adding to the roster of talent including Julianne Moore, Colin Firth and Christoph Waltz, that she has had the privilege to work with. Wilde relays Dreyfuss’s playful antics on set; “He’d change his lines a lot and ad lib so you had to be on your toes around him. It can be quite off putting when you’re in a scene with him because you have to remind yourself that you’re in a scene too-otherwise you just end up watching him! He’s so brilliant.”
She is flying off to Atlanta the day after our interview to begin shooting Endless Love, directed by Shana Feste and produced by Josh Schwartz of Gossip Girl and The OCfame. It boasts an impressive cast, featuring Alex Pettyfer and Joely Richardson, and Wilde has bagged herself the female lead. Her career has been something of a slow burn thus far, but it all seems to be picking up. Is she excited? “For me, to be given the opportunity to be in anything because this industry is so tough is amazing. I just don’t want to play the same roles. I want to play roles that are different.” From the 18th Century French court, to squatting with Richard Dreyfuss by way of Stephen King’s classic high school horror, I’d say she’s doing just fine.