Jessie Buckley and Eddie Redmayne photographed by Jason Hetherington
for The Sunday Times November 21, 2021 issue
PHOTOGRAPH BY JASON HETHERINGTON AT SERLIN ASSOCIATES.
STYLING BY JAY HINES. REDMAYNE: GROOMING BY PETRA SELLGE.
BUCKLEY: HAIR BY MARK FRANCOME PAINTER,
MAKE-UP BY GINA KANE
Article: Eddie Redmayne’s Cabaret gamble:
Interview by Kirsty Lang
The actor has dreamt for years of bringing the Kit Kat Club to the stage —
he talks latex, tights and first night nerves with co-star Jessie Buckley
'Eddie Redmayne has a dilemma. His children, aged three and five, are desperate
to come and see him on stage in a new production of Cabaret. He has been playing
the music nonstop at home and they’ve even learnt the moves to the song Money
Makes the World Go Round. “They enjoyed Frozen, so they think it’s going to be
like that,” he says, chuckling “Their favourite number is Don’t Tell Mama, but they
have no idea what it’s about.” The jaunty tunes belie the fact Cabaret is probably
one of the darkest musicals ever written. Set in Weimar Germany as the Nazis
begin their ascent to power, there’s violence, antisemitism and the leading lady,
Sally Bowles —who can’t tell her Mama...'
Aged 17 he was cast as the Emcee in a school production at Eton that was later
taken to the Edinburgh Fringe. He remembers “running up the Royal Mile in
latex and tights handing out leaflets for the show”.
How does Redmayne see his character, the mercurial Emcee?
“I see him as a survivor who can shape-shift himself out of every situation.”
The script of Cabaret doesn’t put a label on the Emcee, but the character is often
played by LGBT actors, so Redmayne’s casting has come in for criticism.
“Of all the characters I’ve ever read, this one defies pigeonholing. I would ask
people to come and see it before casting judgment,” he says firmly.
This is a sensitive conversation for Redmayne. He came in for considerable
flak for his Oscar-nominated role in The Danish Girl, based on the true story
of the first person to undergo gender reassignment surgery.
His critics believed the role should be played by a trans actor.
Would he take it if he was offered it today?
“No, I wouldn’t take it on now. I made that film with the best intentions,
but I think it was a mistake.”
“The bigger discussion about the frustrations around casting is because
many people don’t have a chair at the table. There must be a levelling,
otherwise we are going to carry on having these debates.”
Jessie Buckley, who will be playing Sally Bowles, adds:
“This is the most diverse company I have ever worked in.”
“On the first day everyone introduced themselves and said their pronouns,
he, she, they . . . and it was lovely to be part of that conversation.
Our Kit Kat Club welcomes everyone, whoever you are.”...
November 21, 2021 issue
BTS of the photoshoot posted by JamieDaniels on Instagram
Eddie is wearing their imperial blue Piccadilly suit trousers.