Rachel Weisz on ‘The Favourite’ and How Yorgos Lanthimos Designed the Shots Around the Acting


One of my favorite films of 2018 is director Yorgos Lanthimos’ The Favourite. Loaded with amazing cinematography by Robbie Ryan, brilliant performances by the entire cast, a fantastic script by Deborah Davis and Tony McNamara, amazing costumes and production design, and remarkable work from every other department, The Favourite is one of those special movies that you absolutely need to see on the biggest screen possible. Also, while Lanthimos had previously shown he was a gifted filmmaker with his previous work (The Killing of a Scared Deer, The Lobster, and Dogtooth) The Favourite only reinforces my belief that his talent behind the camera is still growing. Trust me, see this film.

Image Fox Searchlight

If you haven’t seen the trailers or read Perri Nemiroff’s glowing review, the film takes place in 18th century England and revolves around the frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) whose life with her close confidant and friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) is upended with the arrival of a new servant named Abigail (Emma Stone). Like all films by Lanthimos, any description does not do the film justice because of the way he uses cinema to express the story. The Favourite also stars Nicholas HoultJoe Alwyn, and Mark Gatiss.

During my interview with Rachel Weisz, she talked about collaborating with Lanthimos, Robbie Ryan’s fantastic cinematography, knowing she wanted to make the film after reading the script, what it means being part of a film in Awards contention, and more.

Check out what she had to say in the player above and below is exactly what we talked about followed by the official synopsis. The Favourite is now playing in limited release.

Image Fox Searchlight

Rachel Weisz:

  • What was it like working with Yorgos Lanthimos and Robbie Ryan and the amazing cinematography?
  • What was it like filming the dance scene?
  • What does it mean to her to be part of a film being mentioned in Award season?
  • Her reaction reading the film for the first time.

Here’s the official synopsis for The Favourite:

Early 18th century. England is at war with the French. Nevertheless, duck racing and pineapple eating are thriving. A frail Queen Anne (Olivia Colman) occupies the throne and her close friend Lady Sarah (Rachel Weisz) governs the country in her stead while tending to Anne’s ill health and mercurial temper. When a new servant Abigail (Emma Stone) arrives, her charm endears her to Sarah. Sarah takes Abigail under her wing and Abigail sees a chance at a return to her aristocratic roots. As the politics of war become quite time consuming for Sarah, Abigail steps into the breach to fill in as the Queen’s companion. Their burgeoning friendship gives her a chance to fulfil her ambitions and she will not let woman, man, politics or rabbit stand in her way.