On the eve of the 90th Academy Award nominations, the pink carpet was rolled out at Fox Studios Australia for guest of honour, Queenslander Margot Robbie, to premiere her highly rated film as producer and lead star I, Tonya.
Literally 24 hours ago, I saw you looking gorgeous at the SAG Awards. Now here you are looking just as amazing standing in front of me in another hemisphere.
MR – (laughs) I can’t even tell if that was 24 hours ago, it seems like five seconds.
What originally drew you to be part of this movie?
MR – It was a brilliant script, rebellious in nature unlike any other script I’ve read before, which is why we gravitated towards it and found things relevant with the idea of truth. And class divide is something wrong happening in America as women are told what to be, speaking out combats unfairness. Much of that felt relevant but on the surface, the amazing fun script made me laugh then immediately feel guilty for laughing at something challenging me as an audience.
How did you prepare physically?
MR – Mostly just build muscle mass, weights, sit ups and general workouts – nothing major. Training for ice skating was important to get right, that I worked on for months with incredible instructors.
Your opinion of the #TimesUp movement at the moment.
MR – I’ve been very fortunate in our industry but as a woman of the world, of course I’ve experienced gender inequality. It’s definitely all of our duties to work towards a society that doesn’t exist anymore. It may take a long time although the louder conversations are, the closer to achievement.
As a producer, how hard was it to get a project like this up and running?
MR – It’s an extremely ambitious undertaking from a producorial’s point of view, a very unconventional script which means people usually won’t invest a ton of money. You got Olympics, period setting spanning over forty years, all those things that make a script expensive – this one has it in spades. So as a producer, it was exceptionally difficult but the passion from all was undeniable after they read the script. Comments like: ‘I don’t know how the hell I’m going to pull it off but I’m in’. That passion got the film made.
Was it difficult to snap out of character once cameras stopped?
MR – Yeah good question, it took me a while actually. I did have to snap out of Tonya often due to producing stuff in between takes. I don’t really do character morphing if not filming scenes but instantly can go straight back into it when cameras roll. Although this character did linger with me a few months after shooting wrapped, tricky to shake off.
I hope the Academy thought you were as brilliant as I did as Tonya.
MR – (smiles) Thank you so much, you never know….you never know.
Hey you were also great in Tarzan, bit of an underrated film.
MR – I loved it, had such a good time making it as well, nice meeting you Shane.
Shane A. Bassett