VIDEO EXCLUSIVE: Taissa Farmiga On ‘We Have Always Lived In The Castle,’ Part 2
Taissa Farmiga had a memorable experience shooting her new thriller movie, We Have Always Lived In The Castle.
Directed by Stacie Passon and based on Shirley Jackson’s novel of the same name, the film also stars Alexandra Daddario, Crispin Glover and Sebastian Stan and is about two sisters who are shunned by the rest of society for crimes they are accused of and live in an isolated home with their uncle until their cousin arrives with dark plans in store.
“It’s an incredible story with an incredible cast, so I was very excited just to get to Ireland, which is a beautiful country,” Farmiga revealed about the film’s shooting location. “We shot in the Wicklow Mountains, and we were all holed up in this little castle, this little manor in the middle of Ireland.”
“When you’re playing kind of like a messed up family, you bond pretty quickly,” she added.
Farmiga, the younger sister of Oscar-nominated actress Vera Farmiga, also said she had fun playing her character Mary Katherine Blackwood, as she is an eccentric girl who is often not very approachable. Farmiga recalled how intriguing and different it was for her to play out her scenes with Glover and Stan without truly making eye contact or “connecting” with them all the time.
“I had a blast just kind of giving them the cold shoulder and making them have to act with the side of my face, that was fun for me,” 25-year-old Farmiga said with a smile of acting opposite her co-stars.
Farmiga went on to praise Glover as an “acting legend” and raved about his “distinct vision” for his character Julian, who is the uncle of her character Mary Katherine.
The young actress also said she liked the fact that Passon was loyal to the book the movie is based on, and confessed she has read the novel multiple times.
“What I loved about the original novel is just the tone of it,” she said. “I loved the contradictions, I loved that it had this feeling of something being so twisted and foreboding, yet there’s almost this fairy-tale glaze over it.”
Farmiga cited a specific example from the book that reflects this feeling, saying how Daddario’s character, Mary Katherine’s sister Constance Blackwood, often delivers bad news but in an oddly happy way.
“It wasn’t something that just made sense, you had to go along for the ride,” she added of the story.
Full interview transcript below:
Q: What do you remember most about the shoot?
A: First off, it’s an incredible story with an incredible cast so I was very excited just to get to Ireland, which is a beautiful country and we shot in the Wick Low Mountains. We were all just sort of hole up in this little castle, this little manor, in the middle of Ireland, so we didn’t have anyone but each other. So, when you’re playing kind of a mess-up family, you bond pretty quickly, you have to have these connections. I don’t know if there’s a specific moment where I was like “oh wow, I’m never going to forget this,” but just the experience overall, playing someone who didn’t have any respect for anybody. So, when I’m doing scenes with Sebastian Stan or even Crispin Glover, I don’t look at them in the eye. I don’t talk to them, like I talk to them, but I don’t talk to them. When you have a conversation with someone, you give the time of day, Mary Kat doesn’t do that, so I had a blast kind of just giving them the cold shoulder and making them have to act at the side of my face, that was fun for me.
Q: What was it like working with Crispin and Sebastian?
A: I think everyone was super passionate about the project before we started filming, so when
you work with people who care so much, like Crispin Glover is obviously a legend and an
incredible, incredible actor, but he has such as distinct vision for Uncle Julian. I knew before I
got there, when I heard he was cast, I was thrilled because I was like “oh, this is going to be an
interesting mind with an interesting take on the character, something I’m never going to see
before” and that’s absolutely true. I love that Stacey, the director, always went back to the
book, and that was something Crispin loved. He always had the book with him, when we were
about to film a scene and something didn’t fit right with him, he’s like “I don’t think this…this
doesn’t make sense for Uncle Julian.” I loved how assertive he was and the fact that he took
ownership over the character. He knew Uncle Julian better than anybody, and that’s something
I kind of admired. I feel like I did the same thing with Mary Kat, but when you see someone
who’s older than you and more experience, they paid the way and they tell you tell you it’s
okay, you know better, you know the character you’re taking, you know the character better
than anyone so you don’t have to rely on other people’s opinions if you disagree.
Sebastian’s a fun guy. He’s incredibly talented, just a joyous personality, loves to have fun. It’s
hard to say, you talk about somebody and say just “Oh okay, everyone’s so great, everyone’s so
great,” but genuinely, we all had fun. Everyone was there to play their very distinct character
and it was four very different personalities mixed in a scene, and the chemistry there was just
fun to be a part of.
Q: How much did you rely on the book?
A: I read the script first, and then I went back and I read the book. I read the book multiple times since then. What I loved about the original novel, for me, it was just the tone of it. I love the contradictions. I loved that it had this feeling of something being so twisted and foreboding, yet there’s almost this fairytale glaze over it. I think the best example of that is Alex Daddario when she’s telling you, when Constance is telling you bad news and she’s just telling you it’s fine, everything’s fine, and she’s smiling at you. I love those contradictions, I love the contradictions of Mary Kat, who’s this old soul and this young mind. And for me, it was a mix of the tone and the story to be told that it wasn’t something that just made sense. You had to go along for the ride.