In Mother and Child, the lives of three women who don’t know each other are irrevocably intertwined by the complexities of adoption. One of those women is Lucy, played by Kerry Washington. Tragically, her character cannot physically conceive, so she and her husband decide to adopt. The lives of the three main women also affect those around them, which includes Paul – a high-priced and powerful attorney played by Samuel L. Jackson. Both of these fine actors stopped by to talked to Buzzine about their involvement in Mother and Child to give a little insight into their characters.
From the moment they walked in, it was obvious that the actors were in high spirits. Samuel L. Jackson cracked jokes whenever he had the chance. “Don’t look so happy to see me now!” he announced as he came into the room. When asked if he relished playing a soft-spoken, regular character as opposed to larger-than-life super heroes, Jackson quickly countered with, “Is that what he is? Soft-spoken and regular?"
"It’s as exciting to step into the skin of this particular character as it is to be Nick Fury or anybody else. It’s the story that’s the exciting thing, and being able to service it and put that character on the inside of that story and have him be part of the dynamic of what’s going on between his character and Naomi [who plays Elizabeth in the film], and move the story along in that particular way.”
Kerry Washington also shared her thoughts about her character and her acting process. When asked about her very emotional scenes in the film, Washington was hesitant to answer. “I don’t really know how to answer that question – it’s such a tricky question,” she said.
“[As an actor] you don’t prepare for a moment in the film; you prepare to be that person for the whole journey. What’s interesting to me about Lucy is that we meet her in a difficult moment. When I started doing research about her, I realized this is a women who has spent years undergoing infertility treatments, IVF, trying to get pregnant…struggling with that. Now she’s made this new decision to do something differently. She’s already at the end of her rope.”
Like his fellow cast members, Jackson was quick to laud praise on writer/director Rodrigo Garcia. “Rodrigo did an amazing job of writing the story,” Jackson said. “How does [Rodrigo] get in touch with his feminine side that well to make that happen? I’m just glad he wrote a role like [Paul] for a guy.”
On Rodrigo, Washington added, “He is a powerful observer. He really is an observer of human beings.”
“It was great. I know her socially…a bit. I know her husband [Liev Schreiber] better because we worked together. Amazingly, the first thing we did was go that scene in the apartment. Fortunately, I didn’t have to go through the normal stuff you go through when you do love-making scenes, where you go, ‘Where can I touch you? Where can I not touch you? I apologize for getting excited.’ [smiles]
’I apologize for not.’ You gotta let that go both ways! Fortunately, she was the one in charge. It worked out great, but we had a great working relationship.”
Mother and Child is going up against some stiff competition this weekend and another film that Samuel L. Jackson happens to be in as well [Iron Man 2]. “Hopefully [Mother and Child] will find its audience,” he said. “It’s about real people and real relationships. Amazingly enough, this film has a lot to say about faith and Jesus and belief…and hopefully the faith-based audience will show up for this movie.”
Mother and Child is in theaters now from Sony Pictures Classics.