×

Chloe Sevigny, Kristen Stewart Talk Diving Into Lizzie Borden’s Psyche, Modernity of ‘Lizzie’

“When you say 2010, it seems like ‘Oh, my god. That was so long ago,'” Chloe Sevigny recalled when talking about the gestation period for “Lizzie.”

The historical biopic has been in development for the past decade. Sevigny explained how she worked on other projects in the meantime: “It wasn’t like this was my only focus for the past 18 years.”

But the story, which peers into the private home life of the infamously accused and acquitted murderer of her father and step-mother, Lizzie Borden, went through numerous iterations before arriving at the final product.

“When it became [the] incarnation that it is now, we knew we wanted to focus on the love story and Lizzie’s inner life in the house, and the relationship with Bridget and what that meant to her,” Sevigny said. “And how she was trying to build this escape from this life that she was so unhappy in.”

Kristen Stewart, who Sevigny said was her first choice to play the Irish maid who becomes Lizzie’s confidante and paramour, believes the story resonates in the present day because “you see women that seem really modern, self-possessed, [and] desirous of life. People you can really relate to that are literally gagged and bound by their era,” she said.

Stewart noted that while Borden’s story is a tragic tale, “it’s nice to see two animals like that get up and bite back” as they tried to fight their way out of a contentious household. “Both of these women felt not only taken advantage of, but also like they weren’t allowed to exist,” Stewart said.

In playing the titular role and spearheading the film through its fruition, Sevigny was drawn to “just how mysterious she is. I mean, to me, that was what really appealed. Just like, who is this character?”

As Stewart echoed her sentiments, Sevigny went on to expand on her curiosity: “You know, what would drive her to do this? Which is where the story came out of. How does she find the strength then to pull this off. Is she crazy? Was she in an epileptic fit? What was it that would draw a woman to do this? And how oppressed was she that she would go to such extremes?”

“Lizzie” premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and hits theaters nationwide on Sept. 14.

More Film

  • Motherless Brooklyn Edward Norton

    Edward Norton Investigates Murder in 'Motherless Brooklyn' Trailer

    The trailer for Edward Norton’s forthcoming crime drama “Motherless Brooklyn” is officially out. Warner Bros.’ drama, based on the 1999 novel by Jonathan Lethem, follows Lionel Essrog, a young man who works for a small-time mobster in Brooklyn while struggling with an intense case of Tourette Syndrome. “Okay, listen, I got something wrong with me, [...]

  • Summer Box Office

    Box Office Report Card: Studios Get Their Summer Grades

    Studios got badly burned this summer. From May to August, popcorn season in movie speak, the film flops piled up and the big hits were few and far between for nearly every company except Disney. As a whole, summer did little to instill confidence in the state of moviegoing. To be sure, there were successes [...]

  • Port Authority

    Nate Parker's 'American Skin' to Play in Deauville

    Nate Parker’s politically charged drama “American Skin” is set to play at the 45th edition of the Deauville American Film Festival following its world premiere at Venice. “American Skin,” which tells the story of a Gulf War veteran whose son is killed by a police officer, marks Parker’s first feature film since the news resurfaced [...]

  • (L to R) Kristian Bruun, Melanie

    Box Office: 'Ready or Not' Finds $2 Million on Opening Day

    Horror movie “Ready or Not” scared up a $2 million opening day at 2,244 North American locations as Fox Searchlight got a two-day jump on the weekend. The figure includes $730,000 from Tuesday night previews. “Ready or Not” centers on a bride’s wedding night turning deadly when her new in-laws force her into a strange game [...]

  • Lance Reddick Angel Has Fallen

    Lance Reddick on His 'Angel Has Fallen' Role and Yale Acting Classmate Paul Giamatti

    Lance Reddick, known for tough-cop roles on such shows as “The Wire” and “Fringe” — and as a city councilman who used to be a tough cop in “Bosch” — will play the director of the Secret Service in “Angel Has Fallen,” the third installment of the “Olympus Has Fallen” series, coming to theaters Aug. 23. [...]

  • AI Technology David Beckham

    How AI Tech Is Changing Dubbing, Making Stars Like David Beckham Multilingual

    David Beckham does not speak Arabic, Hindi or Mandarin. But when the soccer legend starred in a PSA for malaria awareness this spring, he effortlessly switched among these and six other languages, thanks to cutting-edge technology that could soon change how Hollywood localizes its movies and TV shows. The PSA in question was produced with technology [...]

  • Adam Driver appears in The Report

    'The Report' Trailer: Adam Driver Investigates Post-9/11 Interrogation Tactics

    Adam Driver is in pursuit of the truth in Amazon Studio’s first look at “The Report,” a tense political drama about the CIA’s use of torture. The film focuses on Senate staffer Daniel Jones (Driver), who begins to investigate the CIA’s Detention and Interrogation Program, a group created in the aftermath of 9/11. As he [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content