scy, avatar

She might be a cool person and all, but reading interview titles like "Rebecca Ferguson admits she still hasn't read Dune" is infuriating to me.

Like, you're getting paid how much to play this iconic character in a beloved franchise and still can't be bothered to familiarize yourself with the material? That's just disrespectful.

scy, avatar

Wow, I absolutely didn't expect this to be that controversial.

I think what bugs me most about it is that I've seen multiple interviews with her where she's apparently confused about some in-universe stuff, or even almost comes across as mocking it. It seems as if she's not giving a shit about the thing the audience loves dearly.

Does her performance suffer because of that? Absolutely not. She's great as Jessica. [2/3]

scy, avatar

But this adaptation feels a lot like it's being made by fans. And if they're not fans, then they're respectful and aware of the legacy they're working with. Or at the very least not rolling their eyes when talking about it.

Rebecca comes across as just doing another job. There's nothing really wrong with that, I guess it just makes me sad. But that's probably more of a me problem.

Also, thanks for speaking up instead of unfollowing or something. It helps me learn and grow as a person. [3/3]

sandzwerg, avatar

@scy I haven't seen any interviews but is she asked the same in depth lore questions that other actors get asked and she is the only one who is not in the lore, or are other actors just not asked the same questions?

scy, avatar

@sandzwerg I haven't seen anyone asking her (or any other cast member fwiw) any "deep lore questions" at all, and I hate that I can't remember what it was that initially made me go "wait a minute, she doesn't really understand that part of the movie, nor does she care". It was some interview back when Part One was released.

What made me write that toot was this interview here (Part 2 spoilers): (starting at 9:40)

especially "you want me to talk to my fetus? absolutely"

scy, avatar

@sandzwerg I'm not 100% sure, but for me that feels like mocking it.

Like, fine, if you think this is basically just a story out of the fantasy of a cringey white dude, that's okay. But if you can't suspend your disbelief when it comes to supernatural stuff, maybe don't do sci-fi then?

sandzwerg, avatar

@scy I don't read her as so ignorant(for a lack of a better word) as you apparently do. I mean it's actors talking about acting, not just the lore. Josh Brolin some minutes before makes jokes about the names of the characters. I do get that you dislike her response more than Zendaya and Florence Pugh (who mentioned she read the book). But I also get that comment of Rebecca as more related to her acting than the lore. Like as an actor I can think I look stupid riding a broom in Harry Potter, but

panopticon, avatar

@scy Jodorowsky also never read Dune and it probably was the best thing to happen for the modern Dune.

tante, avatar

@scy She's hired to play in a movie whose script (and other material the writer/director has given her) she has read. That is what she is hired for as a professional. If her process is reading other material for it, that's fine, if her process works differently that's also fine. She's doing her job. One can disagree with artistic choices she made and maybe even find places where the choice one doesn't like stems from her not being familiar with some source material but unless she has a very weird contract, she's not paid to read what the fans want her to read.

Like I get it. I love the books. My son's middle name is Leto. But she's a professional doing her job in the way she wants to. And we should support that just as we want to be treated similarly.

scy, avatar

@tante I'm not saying she's doing a bad acting job. But, if you really wanna go down that road, I'm pretty sure her contract also includes these interviews promoting the movies, and at least I feel somewhat alienated by how she comes across.

Now, is Dune perfect and to be revered? No, some of it is bullshit or even problematic. But she's not even pointing out problems or fostering a discussion, she's just like "yeah, whatever, I don't know or care why people love this so much".

scy, avatar

@tante Now, should she have to care? No. Like you say, her main job is to play the part, and she does it well.

Does it make me like her, want to watch more movies with her, become interested in her opinions and worldviews? Absolutely not.

Maybe my main problem is that I watch this kind of behind the scenes stuff at all, but I can't help it. And I've discovered awesome people doing it! Like, I'm a huge fan of Florence Pugh as a person now and will watch movies just because she's in them.

sandzwerg, avatar

@scy dunno, you need to read the script not the book. Do you really think that actors read all the books to movie adaptations they play on? Because I would really be surprised if that is the case for a majority

scy, avatar

@sandzwerg I would. And a lot of actors say they do.

But of course not everyone has to do it. And she can do whatever she wants.

But I think there's a difference between "based on a random novel by some unknown author" and "based on one of the most influential franchises of all time, with a huge existing fan base".

I personally wouldn't go unprepared into something like that, but I'm also somewhat of a completionist and super interested in the background of all that stuff.

uliwitness, avatar

@scy I can understand it as an actor. A movie ≠ other Dune movies ≠ the books … it sometimes helps if you don't play the character from the book, but rather the character the director gives you.

Especially with female roles from older works that may be horribly regressive. Some directors even prohibit reading the book so the actor plays the voyage, not the destination.

Now, Jessica is a character that holds up surprisingly well, but I don't blame her for sticking to the script alone.

scy, avatar

@uliwitness I don't think you can purely rely on the script with Dune. There's so much internal monologue and character motivation and stuff that I feel like I really see in some of the performances. And I also don't think that Denis Villeneuve of all people would forbid anyone from reading the books.

But sure, she can get her background explained by Denis or whoever and work with that, and she does it well. I just wish she'd care more, I guess, or at least not tell me how little she does.

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