How Ralph Feinnes His Stressful Side During Invisible Woman Filming

He’s worked with some of the finest directors in both the U.K and Hollywood and starred in some of best and biggest films made in the last two decades, but stepping behind the camera heralds new and stressful challenges, as the Ipwish-born actor would attest.

Ralph FeinnesA shaven Ralph Feinnes

"It felt pretty stressful at times. There were days we were squeezing stuff out at the last minute - that creates a lot of tension within. I tried to hide it - it was acting," he said, adding that keeping track of time and costs is an added worry. "The clock is ticking, and you add time. Usually the director can watch a monitor and see (what's been shot)," he said, via

“I had to be in the scene sometimes... so I would have to go back and re-look at it. Constantly, you're eating up time by doing that. Often, I would be hitting the end of the working day and... it's the budgetary costs that has a knock-on effect, so you have to be very careful."

The Invisible Woman is a biographical film, adapted by Abi Morgan from Claire Tomalin's book The Invisible Woman: The Story Of Nelly Ternan And Charles Dicken. It explores the author's relationship with mistress Nelly Ternan (played by Felicity Jones).

"Every biographer that I've read, when they come to writing this episode in Dickens' life - his falling in love with Nelly and the way he exited his marriage - is uncomfortable reading," Feinnes added.

“He didn't have any kind of interior vocabulary to know how to deal with it. I think he knew he had to get out, so he did and it left a lot of wounding behind. It's hard to... feel like you like him at that moment."


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