Marion Cotillard stars in Justin Kurzel‘s Macbeth in the role of Lady Macbeth opposite Michael Fassbender in the titular role.

Marion Cotillard Video Interview On ‘Macbeth’

Cotillard was drawn to star in this latest adaption of William Shakespeare’s Macbeth in part because of the vision that Kurzel had for the film. Instead of making madness the center of the story, Kurzel chose to explore the intimacy between the power-hungry couple.

“[Kurel’s] vision was really, really interesting because he really wanted to create the intimacy between the two characters, and also show their humanity. And I thought that was exactly the kind of Macbeth that I wanted to explore,” Cotillard told uInterview in an exclusive interview. “It’s not very theatrical like we’re used to see Lady Macbeth or even Macbeth so it’s more intimate.”

Working opposite Fassbender, Cotillard always had to be on her toes while filming Macbeth, as the Irish actor often brought new ideas to the set. Instead of finding the changes intimating, Cotillard found them invigorating, enjoying the spontaneity.

“Michael is a very creative actor and every day he would come up with a new idea for the scene, and that was amazing because I never knew what he would do,” the French actress said. That was surprising each time, and I just had to be super connected with the scene and him to know how to react with what he would propose in a scene. That was really, really amazing every day to be surprised.”

Prior to starting work on Macbeth, Cotillard, who is thankful not to share any personality traits with Lady Macbeth, had to work on channeling the character’s accent, replacing her French one with one more reminiscent of Old English.

“I wanted to, you know, honor this gift that I had to play Shakespearean English,” Cotillard explained. “So I studied a lot with my dialect coach, Neil Swain, who’s a Shakespeare expert, and we studied the play and we worked as much as we could to imprint Old English inside of my French person.”

Macbeth is currently in select theaters.


Q: How did you approach the role of Lady Macbeth? -

Well, Justin Kurzel’s vision, the director’s vision was really, really interesting because he really wanted to create the intimacy between the two characters, and also show their humanity. And I thought that was exactly the kind of 'Macbeth' that I wanted to explore. So, I think it’s the intimacy between the two of them, but also the intimacy within themselves that Justin really wanted to show. It’s not very theatrical like we’re used to see Lady Macbeth or even Macbeth so it’s more intimate.

Q: Did you feel a connection to your character? -

No, not really. I mean I really wanted to create this connection, and I hope I did, but I didn’t really, myself, feel a connection like in terms of personality. I really have nothing to do with her and I’m kind of happy that I don’t.

Q: What was your most memorable scene working with Michael Fassbender? -

Oh, there were a lot of memorable moments because Michael is a very creative actor and every day he would come up with a new idea for the scene, and that was amazing because I never knew what he would do. That was surprising each time, and I just had to be super connected with the scene and him to know how to react with what he would propose in a scene. That was really, really amazing every day to be surprised.

Q: Were there any issues playing an English character given that you are French? -

Yeah, a lot of pressure because I wanted to, you know, honor this gift that I had to play Shakespearean English. So I studied a lot with my dialect coach, Neil Swain, who’s a Shakespeare expert, and we studied the play and we worked as much as we could to imprint Old English inside of my French person.