Felicity Jones plays Jyn Erso in the new Rogue One a Star Wars Story! The character is a strong female lead that has strength and character. Today I am excited to share our Felicity Jones interview for Rogue One A Star Wars Story.
I had the chance to interview Felicity during the #RogueOneEvent in San Francisco. You may have seen Felicity Jones in The Theory of Everything, A Monsters Call or Inferno with Tom Hanks.
One of the things I really loved during the Roque One Event was how all of the other cast members described Felicity Jones. They all mentioned how she was a leader not only in the film but on set. That she set the tone for the movie and they all got along great. They all described her so positively and you could see how well they all got along.
True friendship and collaboration were apparent between cast members. Felicity was very open, friendly and fun during our interview. She started off the interview picking up a Jyn Erso doll that was on the table and commenting on how scary it was since it has multiple arms.
When asked to describe her character Felicity paused for a second to think about her answer and then told us.
She has a very strong ideology. She hates the empire, she hates everything they stand for, they have destroyed her family , so anytime she sees a storm trooper she is an animal who wants to take them down. But at the same time, she has a wonderful humanity and she learns how to be a leader throughout the film. She starts off and she’s a bit of an outsider and is very suspicious and untrusting of people.
She’s had a bit of a hard life, there’s been quite a lot of struggle, so it’s not easy for her to trust people. Throughout the film, you see her actually forming these kindred spirits with the other rebels. Finding something that they all have a common dislike of the empire and they unite over that despite their differences.
We asked if she brought any suggestions for her character. Felicity told us
Oh, I mean, throughout everything it was very, very collaborative from the costume, originally the costume you know the first suggestions were sort of this combat style, combat trousers and a kind of flack vest. And I tried that and it didn’t feel quite right and it didn’t feel Star Wars enough and so we had a quite a lot of discussions about bringing in something, bringing in more of this Japanese style that you see in those early films with OB Wan Kenobi. And that you know, the martial arts type clothing that they wear. And to bring out that side of Jyn to bring something a little bit more spiritual into her characterization through the costume. But, every step of the way it was a very, very open dialogue in terms of for all of us to bring, bring as much as we wanted to the characters.
The role of Jyn is quite physical and includes fighting Stormtroopers among other space creatures. We asked Felicity what type of training was involved in prepping for the role.
Well it was sort of going from, you know, I’ve never done any of this stuff before so it was just learning everything from the very beginning and just working very closely with the stunt team who took me through you know, these sort of acrobatic moves that Jyn would have to perform eventually. In the film, so it was just a lot, a lot of practice and a lot of practice.
Do you have any martial arts training?
I used to do actually a little bit when I was little, I don’t know if anyone else did this at school, judo. Did anyone else do Judo? Yeah. Now, I look back and that’s kind of a weird thing to be doing at ten years old but yeah I did a little bit of judo when I was younger and I absolutely loved it. I enjoyed that side of it but there were a lot of early mornings of kind of half asleep, running around the set and, and everyone is permanently in sweatpants when you’re in Star Wars.
So were there any injuries or bumps, bruises, probably?
There were actually. Yeah, I always feel like I should keep my mouth shut about the injuries, with sort of health and safety for Disney. But, no, I’m going to reveal [LAUGHS] what happened. Uh, yeah, there’s a lot, you don’t realize ’cause the adrenaline is pumping so much and then you get home and you’re just literally enormous bruises all over. In a way it sort of, I probably bring it upon myself ’cause I get really into it and take it very seriously.
And I like to do as much as possible you know, I it’s nice I think when you can see the actor actually doing as much of the stunt and the stunt team like that as well. So that it, it feels believable, I think
Did you have to get different clothes to cover the bruises since you couldn’t talk about how you were getting bruised?
Well, interestingly you have ’cause a lot of time you’re doing quite a lot of wirework so you have a harness that you’re wearing. So, you always have another version of your costume and it’s amazing. There’s sort of, there’s the stunt version and then you have the walking version and the sitting version. You know, exactly the same costume, you end up having all these different types that you’re wearing depending on what’s needed. But, luckily it was long sleeves so you never saw the, I could keep in disguise.
Can you talk a little bit about what Star Wars means to you and now being part of it what that means to you?
Star Wars I feel the reason it’s lasted for so long is it’s about family, it’s not just blood relations it’s all, it’s family, the family that you form with friends. Friendships I think what’s so special about it is those friendships are across different races, different languages, but it’s people who come together and they’re obviously united by, by fighting the forces of evil.
And I think that’s what people, generations and generations tap into those, those relationships and really empathize with those characters.
Do you pull from any of your own real life experiences for your role as Jyn?
I gosh that’s a good question. I think you do, probably subconsciously without even realizing it. You’re constantly drawing on your own experiences and definitely some actual Star Wars is about parent child relationship. I think without a doubt would have thought about my own parents when I’m doing some of those scenes that I have with Jyn’s parents, definitely.
What was the most difficult part about being a part of Star Wars?
I think sometimes it comes with a lot of pressure, and it’s obviously it’s you know Star Wars is the boss. It’s not any individual or any one person, it’s the whole franchise and, I think it’s the responsibility. Not letting that kind of become too much and get to sort of overly serious. I think you know, obviously when, when there’s a sense of leadership, it’s trying to keep a kind of likeness. And an enjoyment and not kind of beat yourself up too much for all the mistakes that you might be making. [LAUGHS]
What did you learn about yourself from this film?
I don’t know, I think in a few years I’ll be able to answer that. I don’t know, I still feel like I’m kind of in the middle of it. I just hope, I mean I always hope that people respect you for your work. I don’t know if that answers your question exactly but something along those, those lines.
Will we see your character go to the dark side?
No way. [LAUGHS] No, she’s on the good side all the way. All the way.
Check out this extended look at Rogue One: A Star Wars Story!
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY follows a group of unlikely heroes in a time of conflict who band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. This key event in the Star Wars timeline brings together ordinary people who choose to do extraordinary things, and in doing so, become part of something greater than themselves.
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY is directed by Gareth Edwards and stars Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn, Donnie Yen, Mads Mikkelsen, Alan Tudyk, Riz Ahmed, with Jiang Wen and Forest Whitaker. Kathleen Kennedy, Allison Shearmur and Simon Emanuel are producing, with John Knoll and Jason McGatlin serving as executive producers. The story is by John Knoll and Gary Whitta, and the screenplay is by Chris Weitz and Tony Gilroy.
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY arrives in theaters everywhere on December 16th in 3D, Real D 3D and IMAX 3D!
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Visit the official ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY website: http://www.starwars.com/films/rogue-one
ROGUE ONE: A STAR WARS STORY arrives in theaters everywhere on December 16th In RealD 3D and IMAX 3D!
I was a guest of Disney for the #RogueOneEvent. All opinions expressed are my own.