Some of cinema’s finest actors find a deep connection with their respective characters and, whether it’s innate talent or just plain hard work and a little luck, their performances actually feel organic and real. Such is the case with Brie Larson’s stunning work in Room, the story of a twenty something woman who raises her 5-year-old child (Jacob Tremblay) in a locked wood shed.
Once she and her son escape their captor (Sean Bridges), finding a new home in the world is another challenge. Larson devoted seven months of research to prepare for the role of Ma, and she understood that playing such an emotionally complex part required a sense of balance.
“You have to be quite gentle with yourself and very understanding that you are just being a vessel for somebody,” said Larson, whose previous credits include Short Term 12 and The Gambler. “And so it’s important to allow yourself to go down that road in being that vessel but having a very clear understanding that it’s not you and it’s not your problems.”
During the press conference for Room, I asked Brie Larson if playing Ma took an emotional toll on her, and she delivered an insightful take on how she’s able to live her own life while also pursuing her exploration of Ma:
Room, co-starring William H. Macy and Joan Allen as Ma’s parent opens in New York and Los Angeles October 16 and nationwide November 6.
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