‘Me Before You’: Emilia Clarke & Sam Claflin Talk Awkward Auditions and Turning on the Waterworks

     June 1, 2016

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Me Before You is a good old-fashioned tearjerker, fully equipped with personal tragedy, blossoming romance, and ill-fated love. Based on the best-selling novel by JoJo Mayes and directed by theater veteran Thea Sharrock, Me Before You stars Emilia Clarke as Lou, an infectiously good-natured young woman from humble means in need of a steady gig. When her job search leads her to an unexpected position as a caregiver, Lou meets Will Trainer (Sam Claflin), wealthy banker and former playboy who became quadripalegic in an accident two years earlier. Bitter, cynical and devestated by his new circumstances, the young man who once had it all has lost his will to live and Lou makes it her mission to change his mind. There are sparks, there is romance, and there are “good luck stiffling your sobs” amounts of tears.

With Me Before You arriving in theaters this week, I recently joined a group of reporters to chat with Clarke and Claflin about the film. An energetic and playful pair, the duo talked about their awkward first audition encounter (Emilia had cleanse breath), keeping things light on the set, how they researched the reality behind the story, the powere of getting in a good cry, Lou’s insane wardrobe, and more. Plus, Clarke talked about finally getting to share the screen with her former Game of Thrones co-star Charles Dance and framing Claflin as a Khaleesi bobblehead theif.

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Image via Warner Bros./MGM

Could you both introduce your characters?

SAM CLAFLIN: Hello, I’m Will.

Actually, I have a better idea. Could you introduce each other’s characters?

CLAFLIN: Oh, no. This is … Well, I’ll let you go first.

EMILIA CLARKE: Yeah? Okay. Will Trainer is, when you first meet and he literally is a man who has everything. He is charming and incredibly ugly [laughs]. Yes, obviously. This gorgeous, charming, affluent, top of his career man, you meet him and within the first couple of minutes, he as in a road accident, and becomes quadriplegic. From then on, you see quite a different Will Trainer. You someone who becomes incredibly bitter and angry and frustrated with his circumstances. He comes from a very, very well-off English family. They have a family castle which is where he goes back to, so you see him before and then when you see him when he meets Lou, he is quite a different man, quite a different person. Is that good? Yes? Paying attention?

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