How Drew Barrymore Helped Save Oliver Jackson-Cohen’s First Film Role

     October 12, 2020



Oliver Jackson-Cohen has loads of new credits to celebrate like The Invisible Man, The Haunting of Bly Manor and Maggie Gyllenhaal’s upcoming feature directorial debut, The Lost Daughter, just to name a few. But, Collider Connected also gives us the chance to look back and discuss the early credits that paved the way to those most recent accomplishments, credits like Jackson-Cohen’s very first studio film, Going the Distance starring Drew Barrymore.

The 2010 romantic comedy stars Barrymore and Justin Long as Erin and Garrett, a couple who attempt to have a long-distance relationship while pursuing their career goals on opposite sides of the country. Jackson-Cohen steps in as Damon, a friend of Erin’s who puts her relationships with Garrett to the test.

Scoring a role in your very first feature film opposite Drew Barrymore is quite the opportunity, but it’s actually one that Jackson-Cohen might have lost had it not been for Barrymore herself:

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Image via Warner Bros. Pictures

“I didn’t have a Visa and so Warner Bros. had to get me this Visa and I got denied because I’d only done one job in the UK before. And so Drew wrote a letter. I’d never met her, but she wrote a letter to the immigration Visa people. So I felt like when I turned up, I already owed this person my life! There was a whole point where it’s like, ‘Well, you’re not gonna be able to do the movie because if you can’t get the Visa in time, we can’t keep on pushing the dates,’ and so there was a moment where it was like, ‘I’m sorry, we’re gonna have to let this go.’ I felt like, it wasn’t just like, ‘This is your first movie and this is your first studio movie and you’re working with America’s sweetheart.’ Yeah, it was a lot of pressure, but she was so wonderful to work with, and so supportive. She’s really quite special. I know she now has a show so everyone can kind of see how she just exudes kindness.”

This is just one of many stories Jackson-Cohen had to share about his journey from being a big Home Alone fan as a kid to starring in the hit series The Haunting of Hill House, and now, The Haunting of Bly Manor. Click here to give his full Collider Connected interview a watch!

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