It is an unprecedented and revolutionary time for women in film, and as one of the stars of Wonder Woman, Connie Nielsen is actively involved in this. Nielsen plays Queen Hippolyta, mother of Diana (Gal Gadot) in the film directed by Patty Jenkins, which has been critically acclaimed and continues to break international box office records. As of this article, the film has grossed $725 million. Warner Brothers recently announced that Nielsen will be reprising her role along with Gadot in the highly anticipated Justice League, which opens November 17.
Nielsen also currently stars in The Confessions, a thriller from award-winning Italian director Roberto Andò. The film is about a mysterious murder at a G8 meeting where the world’s most powerful economists are gathered to enact important provisions that will deeply influence the world. The film also features international stars like Toni Servillo, Daniel Auteuil and Lambert Wilson.
Later this year, Nielsen will star alongside Paul Rudd, Paul Giamatti, Sienna Miller, Hiroyuki Sanada, Jeff Daniels and Guy Pearce in Ben Lewin‘s World War II drama The Catcher Was a Spy. An official release date has yet to be announced.
Parade recently talked with Nielsen about The Confessions, the success of Wonder Woman and the leadership of director Patty Jenkins.
What can you tell us about your character in The Confessions, Grace Seth?
Grace Seth is a member of the world arts community, a bestselling author of children’s books and part of the small group of superstar VIP guests the G8 or G20 often invite.
I really admired how unique and offbeat this thriller is. What attracted you to the script?
The Confessions has a mysterious quality, a sort of breathless, non-linear narrative with a mystery at its core— but you realize it is another kind of truth the filmmaker is searching for than the simple whodunnit it looks like at first.
You speak eight languages. What can you tell us about how this has impacted your work as an actor?
Speaking Italian and French has afforded me the opportunity to participate in movies with a wide range of directors—like Olivier Assayas, and The Confessions’ Roberto Ando’ —and to move among cultures in a fluid way.
How does it feel to see how phenomenally well Wonder Woman has been received worldwide?
It’s a relief, frankly, that a woman’s film is soaring like this, and exciting for the possibilities it opens up.
Patty Jenkins is a hero for aspiring female filmmakers. Is there anything you can tell us about her leadership on set?
She is a strong director—communicative and open, yet with specific ideas about her vision. She is up for anything you want to try, but will tell you what she is looking for, too.
How does it feel to see how children in particular are embracing Wonder Woman and the characters in the film?
They may not be conscious that they are opening up the dimensions of what is often a narrow and limiting narrative about women. The kids who see Wonder Woman will have no problem conceiving women as heroes, as having agency, as being brave and unstoppable. Because they saw the film, there is now a generation of boys and girls who have added new space and freedom to the perception of women.
The Catcher Was a Spy sounds like a fascinating project. It has a great cast and Ben Lewin’s last film, The Sessions was great. What can you tell us about the film?
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