In a film titled Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, it could be very easy to fall into camp, so it’s a real testament to the film’s stars – Lily James & Bella Heathcote – that there’s not a wink or a nudge or a raised eyebrow to even a second of their performances. It’s as if they’re actually in another version of Jane Austen’s classic, a BBC production or a wannabe Oscar hopeful, only that in the margins of the frame a bunch of undead people seem to be roaming about.
James and Heathcote star as Elizabeth and Jane Bennet, two sisters navigating their way through the manners, heartbreaks, proposals, stabbings, shootings, beheadings and zombies de rigueur of Pre-Victorian England. The inclusion of zombies to Austen’s classic doesn’t feel like a post-modern affectation; instead it accentuates the classist themes of the source. By turning all the peasants into zombies, the film draws attention to the social revolution surrounding the Bennets – all as they while away the hours, wondering if the boys ‘like’ them.
In the following interview with Lily James and Bella Heathcote, the actresses discuss their favorite version of Pride & Prejudice, how much tone effected their performances and their upcoming roles in Baby Driver and The Neon Demon. For the full interview, watch below.
Lily James & Bella Heathcote:
- On their favorite version of Pride & Prejudice
- On how much they looked to previous versions of their characters
- On how their performances differ from other interpretations
- On whether the tone of the film affected their performances
- On their characters in The Neon Demon & Baby Driver