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Interview: Going to ‘The Mad Women’s Ball’ with Mélanie Laurent

Mélanie Laurent is a really cunning actress. I say that because she always seems to be the smartest person on the screen. Her expression is always serious, yet oddly playful. It makes for characters that you immediately care deeply about. Whether it’s for Quentin Tarantino in her American breakthrough Inglourious Basterds or in Beginners, she just captures your attention and imagination. This extends to her directorial output, especially the deeply underrated Galveston. Most recently, her latest movie The Mad Women’s Ball has just been released, after playing at the Toronto International Film Festival. I had seen the flick prior to TIFF and was able to arrange a Zoom chat with her, right before I left for Toronto. Today, you can hear that discussion.

Below, you can hear my conversation with Laurent. I couldn’t resist talking a tiny but about Tarantino and Inglourious Basterds, but the chief focus here is on her directing career. In particular, since this was right before TIFF and the debut of The Mad Women’s Ball, her newest film is what we spent the most time on. She’s incredibly smart and very easy to talk to, so it was an absolute pleasure. As a fun aside, in true French fashion, she immediately put me at ease during the Zoom call by lighting up a cigarette. Truly, it was a perfect way to start the chat. Definitely give the movie a look, as it’s an impeccably crafted period piece. If you like historical costume dramas, this one stands out from the pack…

Here now is my interview with The Mad Women’s Ball actress and filmmaker Mélanie Laurent. Enjoy:

The Mad Women’s Ball is available to watch right now!

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Written by Joey Magidson

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