MOVIE NEWS – Anya Taylor-Joy has revealed that she originally asked to play the mermaid in the sea horror titled The Lighthouse.
Anya Taylor-Joy has already worked with director Robert Eggers on two feature films, her directorial debut The Witch and the upcoming The Northman, alongside Alexander Skarsgård. Although she did not get a role in Eggers’ second film, The Lighthouse, it was not for lack of trying.
Speaking to NME, Taylor-Joy revealed how she badgered Eggers for a role in the film starring Willem Dafoe and Robert Pattinson.
“I felt very lucky that Rob [Eggers] and I love each other so much and he wanted me to come along on this journey,” Anya Taylor-Joy said of being in The Northman.
“I was jumping at it because when he first called me and was like, ‘Hey I’m making The Lighthouse and there’s no role for you. There’s a mermaid…” I was like, ‘I can be the mermaid!’ He was like, ‘You really should not be this particular mermaid, Anya.’ I was like, ‘I can be the seagull, I can just be in the background.’”
Lighthouse follows the story of two lighthouse keepers who are slowly driven mad when a storm strands them on a remote island. In one very “adult” scene, Pattinson’s character Thomas Howard fantasises about having sex with a mermaid (played by Valeriia Karaman) while masturbating in a shed. Later scenes contain nudity and adult content.
In her latest collaboration with Eggers, Anya Taylor-Joy plays Olga, the witch in The Northman. The film follows the journey of a young Viking prince, Amleth (Skarsgård), who seeks revenge for the murder of his father. Along the way, he meets Olga, and they become romantically involved.
“I think it was very important that even though Rob deals with archetypes, any person that’s surviving in this world is pretty fierce,” Taylor-Joy said of her character. “Something that I really love about Olga and this relationship is: I don’t think there’s ever a moment where Amleth looks at her and thinks that because of her size she is not an equal and she does not have something she can offer him.”
“We talked a lot about in the beginning the kind of give and take of how we were helping each other throughout the film so you could believe that bond and you could invest in it so the end has a really big payoff. I love that they both play to each other’s strengths and that they respect it, they’re both very curious about each other and really respect that.”
Anya Taylor-Joy is set to reunite with Eggers in the upcoming Nosferatu remake. However, the director recently cast doubt on whether the project will happen anytime soon, saying in an interview with IndieWire that the project had “fallen apart twice”.
The Northman is released in UK cinemas on April 15.