Had you read the book before you were approached for the part?
I hadn’t known that the book was being adapted and made into film, I saw it in a bookshop and bought it while I was doing a film with seven men. I saw that ‘girl’ was in the title, leafed through it and realised that it was three female narrators and that was interesting to me.
Given the success of the book, were you at all nervous about playing the role given that it is beloved by so many loyal fans?
I had imagined it in my head. I found it an exciting prospect to imagine the character for myself.
How would you describe your character Megan?
I would call her a wrecking ball, a woman-child. I would also describe her as a woman that has lost control but she doesn’t know it. She has committed crimes in her heart and she hasn’t forgiven herself for her crimes, and acts out in various ways. She is a woman that doesn’t have a lot of self-worth and is dealing with a lot of suffering.
You mention that the three female protagonists were a large appeal to doing this film, was that in part due to coming of Magnificent Seven where you were working with a large male cast?
I think that three, complex women with intermingled stories that are connected in so many ways were an attraction. I don’t believe that there are a lot of stories being told like this, especially given how dark this story is. It is a heavy story, with a heavy subject matter, and I think that a lot of people don’t always want to see this from female characters in mainstream films. You typically find stereotypical female characters that are people pleasers, where they are wives and girlfriends, typically who are in the background.
What was the atmosphere on set? Did you get to spend much time with Rebecca Ferguson and Emily Blunt?
That was the irony of this project, in that I was really open to working with other women and empowering myself in that way, and get to collaborate with female actors, but we only saw each other in passing on set. We were rooting for each other, and it was a very supportive vibe on set, but I spent most of my time working with the male actors. That wasn’t my plan going into the project.
You mention that your character is a ‘wrecking ball’, did you find that there was an emotional impact to playing this character?
I think the more experience I have working on films the more I can shed that character rather than carrying around that heavy weight.
What was it like working with Luke Evans? Because your character experiences a lot of trauma.
Luke is a dream to work with. I wish that there was a more in-depth scope to our relationship so I could have worked with him even more. The scenes that we had to do were intimate, but fortunately we had an intimate connection from the start.
How did you find working with Tate Taylor?
Tate wanted to make the realist version of this film, and strip down the characters and the story. I imagined that can’t be easy territory and having to strip down your actors. Tate is an actor, and he comes from that world. He has a unique grip on directing his actors in a very gentle way. He is a true collaborator and he breathes life into his characters, and is able to plant seeds and watch them blossom without interfering with that process.
You have mentioned that on this film you were looking to work with other female actors more, but what else do you look for in the projects that you pick?
For me, I am looking for something that is unexpected. A lot of the characters for women that are currently available are all written the same, and I want to portray characters that are intensely real where it doesn’t feel theatrical it feels like you are peering into a slice of life.
What would you like people to take away from your character in Girl on the Train?
It is an entertaining film, but I think that there are some very real issues that are addressed in the film. My hope is that touches audiences on a very human level. There are a lot of fans of the book, but I think those who haven’t read it will connect with these women, at least that is my hope.
The Girl On The Train is available on Digital Download now and Blu-ray and DVD 6th February.