Fearless actress Thandie Newton burst onto the screen in 1998’s heart wrenching Beloved, then followed it up with more very interesting but difficult racially charged roles in movies like Crash, and For Colored Girls, just to name a few. The English actress opened up to W Magazine about being taken advantage of by a casting director early in her career, why she clings to complicated roles, and how important it is for her to prepare her 2 daughters for life. Check out some of the excerpts below.
On being taken advantage of by director:
A director, on a callback, had a camera shooting up my skirt and asked me to touch my tits and think about the guy making love to me in the scene. I thought, ‘Ok, this is a little weird,’ but there was a female casting director in the room and I’d done weird stuff before so I did it,” she recalled, without naming the filmmaker.
When she found out years later what the director really used the audition for:
Years later, at a film festival, a producer told her drunkenly, “’Oh, Thandie, I’ve seen you recently!’ And he lurched away looking really shocked that he’d said that.” Her husband approached the man for some clarification. “It turns out that the director was showing that audition tape to his friends after poker games at his house. And they would all get off on it,” Newton said.
On what the incident taught her:
I was so so naïve when I started out and I realize now that we have to prepare our kids— I’ve got two beautiful daughters, one is 16 one is 11. So many people in our business, they don’t want to be the ones to say something that’s a bum out because then they become associated with a bum out and nobody wants to read about so-and-so because they’re always blabbering on about a bum out. But one person will read this and it will stop them getting sexually abused by a director. That’s the person I’m interested in.
On Playing a Madam in her upcoming role on HBO:
Exactly! If you know me at all, it’s like, ‘What the hell is that all about?’ But that question is precisely what got me hooked. The show is really looking at things that stick in your craw. It poses these existential questions. It’s really fascinating. It’s like being in a game of Dungeons & Dragons except set in the Wild Wild West.
Click here to read the full story.
By [email protected]_marie