Being an actor is tricky. They're expected to give real performances take after take, while also attempting to find ways to make each individual performance unique. One way celebs often help slide into someone else's skin is through costuming, which will affect the way they move and carry themselves. This seems to be the case with Blake Lively in Paul Feig's upcoming comedy/thriller A Simple Favor. Lively is playing the mysterious Emily, who is effortlessly glamorous and intimidating in the film's trailer. I recently had the chance to speak with the cast of A Simple Favor, where Blake Lively spoke to how costumes affected her performance. Costumes and cat calendars, that is. When I asked if the wardrobe helped her performance, she said:
Oh, entirely. Because this character was a little bit hard for me to understand, actually. I knew that she was a survivor. But some of the stuff she does is just, like, so shocking to me. That I thought 'Oh she almost has to be a caricature of herself.' And in order to survive she has to be aware that she's playing a character. Even if no one else may be aware. What is that thing that's completely iconic and distinct to her? You can see a calendar of cats and one is dressed up as Anna Wintour, and one is dressed up like Karl Lagerfeld. And one is Coco Chanel, or Bowie. And you know exactly who they are, even though it cats. Because their look is so iconic.... So what is this really distinct look?
It looks like in order to delve into Emily's character, Blake Lively needed to start from the outside in. She first found the outfits that Emily would wear as a form of armor in the world, and then eventually looked inward to her past, and why this coping method is so affective for the mysterious missing mom. And while actors are commonly citing their influences, no one could have predicted that cat calendars would have had a role in Lively's performance in A Simple Favor. Meow that's what I call surprising.
Emily's costuming is certainly an iconic aspect of A Simple Favor-- and Blake Lively has been wearing similar pieces leading up to the film's release. In fact, she was wearing one of the character's signature outfits during our conversation-- with Lively also revealing how director Paul Feig's personal style played into her look in the movie. Anna Kendrick's dorky Stephanie is instantly taken by the character, and Emily's signature look definitely plays into that dynamic.
You can see my conversation with Blake Lively and Paul Feig below.
Buzz around A Simple Favor seems to be growing, given the film's all-star talented cast and genre-defying premise. Because while the movie is based around the mysterious disappearance of Blake Lively's Emily, there is plenty of signature Paul Feig humor included in the upcoming thriller based off the novel of the same name.
You can catch A Simple Favor in theaters on September 14, 2018. In the meantime, check out our 2018 release list to plan your next trip to the movies.