In the final issue of the year, actress Florence Pugh exclusively talks to ES Magazine about her role in the newest iteration of “Little Women,” how working with co-star Saoirse Ronan was like being with family, and how the nude scenes in “Lady Macbeth” left her with little room to feel insecure about her body.
On the first time she met Meryl Streep on the set of Little Women: “She was already on set, kind of in character, and I came running down the stairs and I was like, ‘MERYL!’ And I flung my arms around her.”
On wrestling on set with Saoirse Ronan: “Every single scene that Saoirse and I would wrestle in — that was our suggestion. Sometimes she’d be like, ‘God I really want to hit you.’ And I’d be like, ‘Me too.’ And then we’d have a little wrestle and a hug. That was genuine. Every time Saoirse was punching me in the face, it was like, ‘HA! This feels just like family.'”
On her role as Katherine in Lady Macbeth required nudity and how this gave her self-confidence: “Katherine changed everything. I loved the fact she was naked all the time. At that point in my life I had been made to feel shit about what I looked like and that film was perfect, there was no room for me to feel insecure.”
On not wanting to be typecasted into a certain role: “I know it would be very easy to put me in a box and say, ‘You’ve gone for the feisty loudmouth women.’ I think in an actor’s life, well I hope in mine, you have a responsibility to turn scripts down. All the women I play say something and I think that’s so important. That’s why I fall in love with them.”
On feeling eager to please at the beginning of her career: “When you go out there [LA] as a baby-face, fresh thing who is eager to please, they will make you into whatever they need to make you sell, essentially. You need to know exactly what you are representing when you go into meetings so if someone says, ‘That’s really cool you don’t pluck your eyebrows,’ that you don’t f***ing, like, die and whimper. ‘No, I don’t want you to cut my hair. No I don’t want you to wax my upper lip. I have a face and hair grows out of it. Please leave me alone.'”
On whether she was nervous about playing Amy in the new iteration of Little Women: “Not with Amy. She never weighed heavy on my shoulders and I genuinely enjoyed playing every second of her. So I’m never nervous talking about her.”
The full interview appears in this week’s issue of ES Magazine, Thursday 19th December 2019.
[Photo Credit: Paul McClean/ES Magazine]