Thank You, Blake Lively, For Reminding Us Why We Need More Female Screenwriters
12:30 pm, June 26th | by Laura Donovan
Perpetually smiley, willowy Blake Lively may seem like an easygoing California girl, but she’s not one to take orders from those who may not be as well-versed in an area as she is. The “Savages” actress, who portrays a troubled young woman dating two pot dealers in the upcoming film, orchestrated some “revisions” and “rethinking” of her role to fully understand the part she undertook and better portray a 20-year-old girl.
Lively, who has said before that she has only been with boyfriends and is a committed relationship person, is a lot different from onscreen character O, who is kidnapped after her marijuana dealing boyfriends refuse to collaborate with the Mexican drug cartel. Though unable to relate to O’s path, Lively got to know her part well and told the LA Times magazine that the author of the book on which “Savages” is based and and male screenplay writer didn’t exactly have a ton of insight into her character:
“The character in the novel was written by a man, as was the character in the screenplay, and it’s hard for any older man to know what it’s like to be a 20-year-old girl. And my approach is, if she’s doing something you don’t feel is right, then at least let’s understand why. She’s a bit of a pessimist in the novel, for example, but it was important to me for her to be hopeful. If someone is hopeful and believes in good, then it’s much more powerful when that source of light is captured and threatened to burn out.”
Props to Lively for acknowledging that fact, holding her own, and reminding us that female screenwriters are few and far between. Rather than submit to director Oliver Stone’s initial image of O, Lively worked with him until “[she] said, ‘This is a girl I can understand.’ I wanted O to be a strong young woman.” Stone has said more than once that Lively was a bit of a “challenge” and was heavily challenged by “Savages,” but she brought her personal experience as a young female to the project–something the men behind the script couldn’t do.
[H/T The Frisky]