Staunton 'Tipsy' For Vera Drake Finale

VERA DRAKE star IMELDA STAUNTON was drunk when cameras started to roll on the movie's improvised finale - because unconventional director MIKE LEIGH plied her with brandy in the build-up to the harrowing scene.

The 61-year-old film-maker kept details of the script from the whole cast in the hope their reactions to sudden plot changes would be genuine.

And when the entire Vera Drake team were relaxing and drinking alcohol, Leigh decided the time was perfect to spring the final scene - in which the title character's sideline in illegal abortions is exposed - on his leading lady.

Staunton, 49, says, "The film was most improvised and I was the only actor to know about Vera's work. Mike didn't want the rest of the cast to know until the denouement, when Vera is arrested. But not even I knew when this would take place.

"When it did, we were all sat around the dining table filming a celebratory dinner. We were drinking real cherry brandy as we couldn't find anything that looked realistically similar. So I started to feel very relaxed and a bit tipsy, thinking this was one of the easier scenes.

"Then the police arrived, so the day turned into an eight hour improvisation of the most critical part of the story - and I was tipsy on cherry brandy!"

20/01/2005 14:05


Tags: Imelda Staunton - Mike Leigh


More Imelda Staunton

pride reviews

After taking Cannes by storm and picking up a few awards in the process, the true comedy-drama Pride has already joined the ranks of beloved...

Pride Movie Review

Based on a true story, this crowd-pleasing comedy-drama is such a joy to watch that it wears our faces out with all the smiling, laughing,...

With 100%, 'Pride' Is Probably The Best British Movie of the Year

Pride is almost certainly the movie that you have to see at the cinema this weekend. The comedy-drama has everything to match some of the...

Pride Trailer

During the UK miners strike between 1984 and 1985, working families are in desperate need of support. They're feeling victimised and abandoned by society as...


Maleficent Movie Review

Disney rewrites its own history again with this revisionist version of its 1959 classic Sleeping Beauty. As she did with Alice in Wonderland, screenwriter Linda...

'Maleficent' Teased In New Behind-The-Scenes Interviews With Angelina Jolie And Elle Fanning

Ready to check out the brand new behind-the-scenes featurette for Disney's new live action fairytale, Maleficent? Stars Angelina Jolie and Elle Fanning talk about their...

Maleficent Trailer

'Maleficent' stars Angelina Jolie and Elle Fanning talk about the upcoming fairytale movie alongside screenwriter Linda Woolverton and director Robert Stromberg in a short featurette.'We...

Maleficent Trailer

Maleficent is a cruel sorceress who will stop at nothing to destroy those who have stolen her wings and ruined her world. As a child,...



Imelda Staunton Newsletter

Subscribe to this news alert service to receive news and reviews on Imelda Staunton

Unsubscribe | Unsubscribe All