Anne Hathaway "Ceased To Function" While Working With Anthony … – TheThings

Hathway had a really hard time preparing for an important scene with Hopkins in the 2022 film.
2022 has had some of the most raved-about movie performances in recent years. Among them is Anne Hathaway's role in James Gray's Armageddon Time. While Hathaway has had a few fairly controversial moments in her career, including co-hosting The Oscars with James Franco, she has been one of the most consistent performers in the business. Year after year, Hathaway turns out great work. And playing a version of writer/director James Gray's mother in Armageddon Time may be one of her best.
But Hathaway isn't the only actor who's been stealing attention for Armageddon Time. The film, which follows a young Jewish American boy dealing with antisemitism in 1980, also contains a truly remarkable performance by Sir Anthony Hopkins.
In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Anne Hathway revealed what it was like to work with Hopkins as well as how their biggest scene together caused her body to stop functioning.
Caution: Minor Spoilers For Armageddon Time Ahead
Armageddon Time is a semi-autobiographical film about writer/director James Gray's life in the 1980s and how the conflicts of then parallel the conflicts of today. The film, which co-stars Succession's Jeremy Strong, Jaylin Webb, and Banks Repeta, features Anne Hathaway in an outstanding performance as Gray's mother. One that's received a ton of critical praise as well as put her on the short-list for an Academy Award nomination.
"The woman that my character is based on died a few years after the events in this film, so I was always very conscious of the fact that I was speaking to James about something that’s tender," Hathaway explained to The Hollywood Reporter of how she prepared for the role with her director.
Related: Things Got Awkward When Anne Hathaway Refused To Shake Hands With A Journalist
"I wasn’t just speaking about a character and how I would like to play her. It couldn’t actually have that kind of force," Hathaway continued. "It was a character that I was receiving, and I found direct questions were not helpful. I found [myself] asking indirect questions, something that would kind of just stoke the fires of his memory — asking a simple question like, 'What would your mom have playing on the TV when she cooked?' He would answer, but then it would lead to all of these other memories because memory is not really linear. It’s atmospheric, and all-encompassing."
Related: Anthony Hopkins Said This TV Star Is The Best Actor He's Ever Seen
Hathaway went on to say that she felt as though she needed to "receive" the part rather than fight to understand it. Over numerous conversations with Gray, she was able to paint a larger picture of who his mother was.
"I now know a few people who have lost their mothers at different stages of their lives. And I have to say, I don’t think you ever stop grieving the loss of your parents," Hathaway explained to The Hollywood Reporter. "It becomes something you live with, but I think that you are changed by it. I took that very seriously when I was speaking to James — that I was speaking to him about someone for whom he is mourning."
There is no shortage of great Anthony Hopkins movies, and this fact wasn't lost on Anne Hathaway when she was required to work opposite him in 2022's Armageddon Time. On top of her respect for the actor, their biggest scene together required a great deal of emotion. The scene, after all, deals with grief and the unbearable weight of loss. While Hathaway is an experienced actor, the hard subject matter, as well as what the moment meant to the film's director, weighted on her.
"I find that the most challenging scene for me in this movie was my first scene with Anthony Hopkins because I just completely ceased to function," Anne Hathaway explained during her interview with The Hollywood Reporter.
"Like, I couldn’t talk as a human, I couldn’t speak as an actress, I couldn’t say my lines, I couldn’t remember my lines. I couldn’t do the accent, which I’d worked very, very hard on. I really, really, really couldn’t function," she admitted.
The build-up to shooting this scene was brutal on the actor, but when she finally focused, she "just let it out".
Related: Anne Hathaway Surprised Fans With Her Celebration Of The Devil Wears Prada's 16th Anniversary
'I’m at a stage in my life where I’m starting to experience grief more and more. People I love very, very much have shifted, and I’ve had to change my relationship with them to being one in the here and now to one in the there and everywhere. And that’s hard. So that part felt maybe like the most connected-to-me scene in the film."
Dylan Parker is a list and content writer and editor working for Valnet Inc. since 2017. He’s written for TheTalko, Baby Gaga, Moms, and Screen Rant. Currently, he is both a writer and an editor at TheThings where he specializes in entertainment, film, and celebrity news. Dylan has also written for Narcity and various other entertainment, food, and travel publications.


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