While there was plenty to celebrate on the carpet, stars Margot Robbie and Domhnall Gleeson also reflected on the fallout following the controversy and how the industry is grappling with what to do moving forward.
Robbie weighed in on the allegations facing the disgraced producer, stressing the importance of supporting the victims.
“I think the most wonderful thing that is happening is that the industry and people are supporting the women who have come forward,” Robbie said. “I think that can only bring about a positive change, not just in our industry, but every industry. I think the conversation being prevalent and people really embracing the idea of moving forward in a positive way, is the best thing that can come from this.”
Gleeson said the complexity of the issue was hard to sum up in a sound bite.
“You just want to be a part of moving things along to a place where people don’t have to worry about going to work. I find it really hard to be eloquent in a short period of time because it feels like a really long conversation we need to have properly,” he said.
The Fox Searchlight film tells the story behind the beloved children’s books “Winnie-the-Pooh” and the author A.A. Milne.
It’s easy to forget that Christopher Robin and his Hundred Acre Wood were based on A.A. Milne’s own son and his stuffed toys. In the immediate aftermath of World War I, Milne’s instant bestseller offered a welcome respite from the trauma for both adults and children.
Gleeson said the biggest challenge playing Milne was learning how post-traumatic stress disorder affected his family, writing, and creativity. Gleeson joked he was prepared for the pressure of having to play such a well-known and beloved writer thanks in part to his previous roles in two other fan-heavy franchises: “Harry Potter” and “Star Wars.”
“You just have to concentrate on the job and know you can’t work any harder than your artist did,” he said.
Robbie stars as Milne’s glamorous, well-intentioned, and overbearing wife in the film. Robbie said Daphne was an unusual character to play since she wasn’t exactly the most likable person.
“I grew up with the Winnie-the-Pooh toys and there is one point where Daphne starts making the voices for the toys,” Robbie said. “My mom did that for me when I was kid, it was a massive childhood memory and to read it in script form, I knew that I had to do this.”
Ten-year-old Will Tilston, who Christopher Robin, said his eight auditions had made him a bit “anxious” to get the part, but he had a lot of fun once on set.
“I like Winnie-the-Pooh. He has a very little mind, but he’s funny and can be really intelligent sometimes,” Tilston, who’s making his film debut, said on the carpet.
The film isn’t without its darker elements. Christopher Robin went on later in life to hate the books and the childhood fame it brought him. No one in the family could have predicted the success, and in many ways, Robin was the first child celebrity. Producer Damian Jones said he hopes the backstory adds to the complexity of the book.
“The books are joyous and a pleasure to read, and can be simply read on the surface, but the subtext is quite profound. I hope that by giving it a further layer with this film, it enhances the substance of the stories,” he said.
“Goodbye Christopher Robin” arrives in theaters on Friday.