For actresses Ellen Page and Greta Gerwig, the experience of working on Woody Allen’s latest film, To Rome with Love, was the thrill of a lifetime. “It was really wonderful and to work with such awesome, talented people — it makes one’s job a lot easier,” Page told Uinterview exclusively.

“It was just the four of us, my section and everyone’s just so wildly talented,” Gerwig added. “It’s so fun to watch everybody act. But also, there’s a really good hangout vibe going on, sort of unexpected. I mean, I didn’t expect us to necessarily feel like, ‘Oh! We’re just totally yakking it up on the car ride there!’ But it was amazing and so fun.”

Though neither Page nor Gerwig have yet even turned 30, each actress has turned in indelible performances that suggest a maturity beyond their years – Page most memorably in 2007’s Juno and Gerwig in 2009’s Greenberg with Ben Stiller. This was their first film with Allen, and both were surprised by their experience. “I guess he’s known for being quiet, but maybe just for how quiet he was. Always sort of very, very reserved in the way he directed and gave you a lot of freedom and kind of liberty to have a natural evolution with what you were doing,” Page told Uinterview.

Like her co-star Page, Gerwig also had notions of what working with Allen would be like. “I think his comedic persona is he’s neurotic and kind of hyper-verbal and neurotic, and I’m sure that’s how he feels inside, but as a director he’s very calm, he’s very quiet, and he’s very succinct. He doesn’t use more words than he needs to,” Gerwig said.

1 Comments

  • christopherclarke
    christopherclarke on

    Greta Gerwig and Ellen Page are so wonderful… sigh.

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Q: What was the thing that surprised you the most about working with Woody Allen? - Uinterview User

ELLEN PAGE: I guess he’s known for being quiet, but maybe just for how quiet he was. Always sort of, very, very reserved in the way he directed and gave you a lot of freedom and kind of liberty to have a natural evolution with what you were doing.

GRETA GERWIG: I think his comedic persona is he’s neurotic and kind of hyper-verbal and neurotic, and I’m sure that's how he feels inside, but as a director he’s very calm, he’s very quiet, and he’s very succinct, doesn’t use more words than he needs to.

Q: What was the most memorable moment with the cast? - Uinterview User

ELLEN PAGE: I mean I just love working with Greta and Jessie and Alec. I think the four of us got along really well and there was an awesome energy on set and afterwards when we were just hanging out in our room and it was so nice because to get along, but then on top of that, just all sort of co-exist together really well. It was really wonderful and to work with such awesome, talented people, it makes one’s job a lot easier.

GRETA GERWIG: Yeah, I mean it was just the four of us, my section and everyone’s just so wildly talented, it’s so fun to watch everybody act. But also, there’s a really good hangout vibe going on, sort of unexpected. I mean I didn’t expect us to necessarily feel like “Oh! We’re just totally yakking it up on the car ride there!” But it was amazing and so fun.

Q: How did receiving only your part of the script affect your performance? - Uinterview User

ELLEN PAGE: The other three stories are just completely separate. It was actually nice because the first time I watched the film, you can kind of ignore the fact that you’re in it and you’re watching all the stuff that is essentially, all totally new to me, and that was nice to see that.

GRETA GERWIG: I stole the script from the mega trailer and read it, so I actually did read it. But I did that at the end of our shooting, because I actually do like just knowing your section, I think it allows you to stop intellectualizing how you fit in and just be in the scenes, I think. But, I did read it ahead of time and was still super entertained.

Q: Woody Allen doesn’t rehearse scenes before shooting them. How did that change your performance? - Uinterview User

ELLEN PAGE: I think it always varies from film-to-film. You’ll work with certain directors who really want to rehearse, with other directors who want to talk about it, and you’ll work with a director like Woody who doesn’t want to do either of those things and it’s about adapting to different people’s process and kind of going with it. And he just doesn’t want you to kind of be over-analytical, intellectualize, he wants you to be natural and do it. And that was actually a cool experience to approach something that way.

GRETA GERWIG: Yeah, not rehearsing or talking about it also gives when you first do it, there is just this freshness and spontaneity because of that, you know if you work it too much, sometimes that can get lost. So I think it’s one of the reasons his films feel buoyant is because they have that nervousness.