MONA LISA AND THE BLOOD MOON Interview With Star Kate Hudson And Director Ana Lily Amirpour (Exclusive)

Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon star Kate Hudson and director Ana Lily Amirpour talks to us about the mind-bending fantasy thriller, including their creative process and how the movie subverts expectations.

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In Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon, Kate Hudson and Jun Jong Seo star in this mind-bending thriller from visionary director Ana Lily Amirpour (A Girl Walks Home Alone At Night).

When a struggling single mother (Hudson) befriends a mysterious mental institute escapee with supernatural powers (Jong Seo), she sees a lucrative opportunity to make some fast cash. But when they draw the attention of a detective (Craig Robinson), their luck starts to run out as the cops close in on their crime spree.

Ed Skrein and Evan Whitten also star in the movie, and we recently had the good fortune to sit down with Hudson and Amirpour to discuss their unique collaboration. In the video interview below, they open up on the challenges associated with the project, how they worked together to prepare, and subverting audience expectations with some unconventional casting. 

Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon is a delightfully quirky and compelling romp that takes us on an unforgettable trip through New Orleans, and we can't recommend checking it out highly enough. Hudson is on top form ahead of what looks like another scene-stealing role in Glass Onion: A Knives Out Mystery, while Amirpour is clearly a filmmaker to watch.

Check out our interview with Hudson and Amirpour below and be sure to subscribe to my YouTube channel for more exclusive interviews by clicking here

Kate, this role asks so much from you whether it’s those clashes with Charlie, the dance in the club, or what happens nearer the end of the film; how do you go about preparing to play a character like Bonnie and, as an actor, why would you say it’s important to have a director like Ana there to guide you through it?

Kate: Let me walk backwards from this. Number one, it’s important to have a great director in anything that you do. I think if there’s one thing that I’ve learned from trial and error in this business, it’s that great storytellers are who you should be working with. So, when you have the support of someone like Lily, you know what you’re in for. You know you’re going to get a fun movie, a wild movie, an expertly well-shot movie, and I just think that Lily…the visuals are so great and so specific to her as an artist. I just love being part of that. So, yes, when you’re in the hands of a great filmmaker, not only does it allow you to do better work, you know that they’re going to capture the best that you can give. 

To me, preparation is always the same. Sometimes, I think from the outside in, certain things look more challenging than others. It’s always shocking to me which movies are the most challenging. Bonnie, in this film, was so much fun creating her. The hair and the wigs and the costumes and nails and tattoos…we really layered her and put her on, even with what might seem like a few layers. It was a lot of layers with Bonnie to get there and then when I put her on and it’s on the page, you really do slip into it. For me, I loved it. Hopefully, you just know the character inside and out and bring her to life. 

Ana Lily: She’s amazing. When she’s in that hospital bed and she’s all beat up with this really long bit of dialogue that we rehearsed. I just remember we were shooting it and Kate would be loose with it and it would go all over and be organic and also funny and real. That’s the magic. It’s really fun to watch.

Kate: That was such a fun scene to shoot.

Ana Lily: That was one where I was watching and was like, ‘Yeah…yeah!’ 

Kate: All of those prosthetics, you know, I had to have them cover my face.

Ana Lily: When we were first shooting that, we walked into the room and it was the first time I was seeing her fully beat up. I literally felt pain. I was like, ‘Are you okay?’ [Laughs] It was so real.

I loved that so many of the actors in this film play against type and show different sides of themselves, like Ed and Craig, but was subverting expectations with the cast something important to you from the start, Ana?

Ana Lily: The interesting thing for me is that I’m often a lot attracted to great comedic actors. I feel like when an actor has this mastery of making you laugh in a real way, it’s a type of genius. I don’t actually see it as playing against type. I just want to bring that energy and truth and levity into this story. It was like Kate for Bonnie. There was no, ‘Oh, can she?’ That’s just who it is because why wouldn’t it be? I don’t know. I don’t even have that thought, so I think it’s my attraction to…I also see life that way. The hard things aren’t just hard, hard, hard and the fun things aren’t just fun. There’s darkness in the humour and humour in the darkness is always there for me in the storytelling. 

Thanks so much for your time. Kate, I can’t wait to see Glass Onion later this year and Ana Lily, I’m excited for what’s next for you.

Kate: Thank you, Josh. That’s another fun one!

Mona Lisa and the Blood Moon arrives in theaters, on Digital and on Demand on September 30, 2022.

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