Posted on September 22nd, 2018 by Frederik

The Sydney Morning Herald has a great lengthy interview with Toni Collette on the upcoming release of “Wanderlust” in Australia: In the 20-plus years that she’s been on our screens, Toni Collette has tended to avoid playing characters she has much in common with. That, she reasons, would be boring. It means she wasn’t ever like the awkward Muriel Heslop in her breakout film, P.J. Hogan’s 1994 classic Muriel’s Wedding. Nor has she been a suicidal hippie like Fiona in the 2002 British rom-com About a Boy. And (as far as she knows) neither of her children sees dead people, as her character’s son did in Hollywood’s 1999 supernatural flick The Sixth Sense. But Collette’s latest role is as a therapist. And within a few minutes of her relaxing into a chair in the restaurant in London’s West End where we meet, I suspect she’s fairly good at giving profound advice. “Life is long,” she says, scanning the menu and casting it aside in one smooth motion. “Some people stick to the rules, some people question who made them. And those people then pave their own way, which is a braver, more satisfying path, yes, but it’s also a scarier one, you know?” I think so. To be fair to Collette, we are talking about the themes of Wanderlust, a new drama co-produced by the BBC and Netflix, in which she plays Joy, a counsellor who tries to resuscitate her own marriage after a cycling accident. But gentle wisdom, smoothed by travel, seems to pour from her. The interview can be read in its entirety on their website:

Posted on September 4th, 2018 by Frederik

“Wanderlust” premieres on BBC1 tonight, and so far it has received some of the silliest promotion from the British press one can imagine. I won’t bother linking to any of the “most X-rated drama ever”, “groundbreaking sex scenes” and “first orgasm on the BBC”. I assume those who tune in because of these headlines will be in for a disappointment. We’ll find out later today. In the meantime, the Telegraph’s Stella Magazine has run a cover story on Toni this Sunday. Here’s a preview: In the 20-plus years that she’s been on our screens, Toni Collette has tended to avoid playing characters she has much in common with. That, she reasons, would just be boring. It means she wasn’t ever like the awkward Muriel Heslop in her breakout film, Muriel’s Wedding. Nor has she been a suicidal hippie like Fiona in About a Boy. And (as far as she knows) neither of her children sees dead people, as her son in The Sixth Sense did.But Toni’s next role is as a therapist. And within a few minutes of her relaxing into a chair in the West End restaurant where we meet, I suspect she’s fairly good at giving profound advice. You can read the complete article on The Telegraph, in case you have a premium membership for their articles.

Posted on September 4th, 2018 by Frederik

Article from Radio Times for today’s premiere of “Wanderlust” on BBC1: In some ways the concept behind Wanderlust is a hard sell: a drama about the sex life of a middle-aged married couple? And the wife is a psychotherapist called Joy whose whole life has been shaken up by a cycling accident? And the husband is an English teacher called Alan? Could be dull. But we have good news! Wanderlust is excellent. Even better, Joy is played by Toni Collette who could give an Oscar-worthy performance just by reading out the back of a shampoo bottle, and Alan is played by The Halcyon’s Steven Mackintosh. No shampoo bottles are necessary because playwright Nick Payne (Constellations) has delivered a script that is funny and pacy and also very, very truthful. Sometimes painfully so. What we get is a drama that takes a hard look at marriage, monogamy and the thorny connections between love and lust and sex. While Joy and Alan are having their Bedroom Issues, their two kids are navigating problems of their own: hormone-filled teenager Tom is desperate to get going, and grown-up daughter Naomi is suffering the heartbreak of rejection. The complete article can be read Radio Times.

Posted on August 7th, 2018 by Frederik

Here’s a nice Q&A with Toni as Out Magazine reports on the release of “Hearts Beat Loud” (which I thouht has been released in June?!): Toni Collette has held a firm place in our hearts — and given us karaoke goals — since her debut as gawky ABBA fangirl Muriel in 1994’s Muriel’s Wedding. This summer, The Aussie actress returned to horror (The Sixth Sense, anyone?) with Hereditary and got tuneful again in the queer-themed indie Hearts Beat Loud. Here, Collette dishes on music, her homeland, and Muriel’s lasting appeal.

What are your thoughts on 1994’s Australian film explosion, with Muriel’s Wedding and Priscilla, Queen of the Desert?
Those two films and Strictly Ballroom came flying out of the country in a very short period of time. It was exciting. I think those things are determined by the filmmakers. That’s what creates the wave. I don’t know if it’s happened since.

What do you remember about the reception of Muriel’s Wedding in America, and the splash you made as an actress?
I felt so alive and appreciative. It was such a surprise when people embraced that character. The movie was life-changing — it helped me embark on a career I never could have dreamed of.

Do you think the success of Muriel and Priscilla made it easier for American filmmakers to do more queer-targeted films?
Priscilla certainly did. It was so fun, but not without depth and poignancy. I don’t know if it opened doors for other films, but when something like that is available to people, it must.

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Posted on June 22nd, 2018 by Frederik

Nice bit by THR‘s Scott Feinberg on Toni’s Oscar chances: People started talking about the Oscars earlier this year than most thanks to the critical and commercial successes of Disney’s Black Panther and Paramount’s A Quiet Place, as well as the doc features Won’t You Be My Neighbor?, from Focus, and RBG, from Magnolia. It may now be time to include another title in the discussion, as well: the A24 horror flick Hereditary. Hereditary marks the feature directorial debut of 31-year-old Ari Aster and stars Australian veteran Toni Collette as the matriarch of a family that faces a bizarre series of events after the death of her own mother. The film, which premiered at Sundance in January and also screened at March’s SxSW Film Festival en route to a June 8 opening in 2,200 theaters, has proven divisive. Critics have championed it (it’s at 91 percent on RottenTomatoes.com) and moviegoers have shown up for it (it grossed $28.1 million domestically in its first two weeks in theaters following the biggest-ever opening weekend for an A24 release). But many ticketbuyers have left it confused and unsatisfied (hence its D+ CinemaScore grade), not least because of its open-to-interpretation ending. Where are Academy members likely to land on the spectrum of reactions? That’s a tough question to answer. Collette’s performance, which admirers consider the best of her decades-long career, certainly appears to stand a better chance of being nominated than any other aspect of the film, but everything is obviously largely dependent on what the rest of the year brings. The complete article can be read here.

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