Evan Rachel Wood: ‘Equal opportunity for women means playing unlikeable characters’


Evan Rachel Wood insists equal opportunity for actresses means showing the complexity of women – warts and all.

Last month (Feb18), the Westworld actress appeared before the House Judiciary Committee to recount her story of surviving sexual assault, rape and domestic violence at the hands of two abusers. And surprisingly her latest film Allure sees her take on the role of an abuser, albeit one who is a survivor of abuse herself.

In an interview with HuffPost UK, Evan insisted that if women truly want equal opportunity, they can’t shy away from taking on darker roles which shows them being imperfect human beings.

“I do believe in equal opportunities for women on film sets, on screen and behind the scenes,” she insisted, referencing the push for gender equality now consuming Hollywood. “Character-wise, I think that also means not just being heroic but being flawed. Playing the not-likable ones, the darker, more complex ones.

“So I thought, you want equal opportunity for women? That also means in this way: looking at the dark side.”

In Allure, the 30-year-old mother-of-one stars as Laura, an abuse survivor who seduces and emotionally abuses a teenage girl Eva, played by Julia Sarah Stone.

Though the part was originally written for a man, Evan admitted she had long been curious about taking on a gender-swapped role, especially after being drawn in by the concept of the story.

“I have not seen an abuse story told in this way or from this angle,” she admitted. “I think that’s what I loved about this movie is, usually, you only see the story from one side, and this was a 360-degree view of how this happens, how it’s perpetuated and how it gets passed on to other people. In that way, it was abuse sort of as I know it, which is as a virus that spreads.”

Allure, which also stars Denis O’ Hare and is written and directed by Carlos and Jason Sanchez, will be released in U.S. theatres on 16 March.