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How Jude Law & Alicia Vikander brought royalty to life in Firebrand

How Jude Law & Alicia Vikander brought royalty to life in Firebrand

How Jude Law & Alicia Vikander brought royalty to life in Firebrand
Roadside Attractions/Vertical Entertainment

Out chats with the iconic actors about their latest period drama.

We love a period piece, especially one that bends the rules of history! The new film Firebrand is just that, as it takes you on a journey through the relationship of King Henry VIII and his most understated wife Catherine Parr.

In the historical drama, Oscar winner Alicia Vikander takes the spotlight as Catherine. Set against the backdrop of Henry VIII's (Jude Law) reigning years, Catherine finds herself navigating dangerous situations, all while dealing with the king's degrading health and vile temper and her connection to childhood friend Anne Askew (played by Erin Doherty) that creates danger for Catherine and her marriage.

As if managing a broken marriage to the King of England wasn't enough, Catherine must also balance her motherly responsibilities to Henry's children. Although King Henry has been seen in the media before, this is the first time Catherine's story is being told on screen, and Out had the chance to speak with the film's stars about their characters.

While speaking to Law, we asked how he approached playing this vile king while also trying to humanize him.

"It was such an interesting part of his life to be able to play because obviously he has a history of tyranny and violence, but he's also kind of on the way out," Law told Out. "He's weakening, he's dying, which makes him in many ways more dangerous. Like a kind of wounded, I always saw him as a wounded gorilla that his legs don't work, but he's got this big powerful upper body but nothing kind of works underneath. And so just trying, I suppose to bring a plausibility to that. There was, I wasn't trying to get sympathy for him, but just trying to understand perhaps why, or rather how these wounds on his legs and this sense of self disgust would affect him. And especially having been this kind of golden god as a young man who was revered for his dancing and his sportsman agility on the sports field and his music. And it was a kind of crushing weight, I suppose, on where he found himself. And let's not forget also her ego. I mean, I don't think he went about expecting to have this sort of unbelievably dramatic love life. And so here he is 30 years on from his first marriage and he's got two beheadings, a divorce, a death on his conscience. And I think that had a huge effect on him too. So Catherine was up against it. She was up against someone with a damaged ego, physically damaged emotionally, and absolutely he had to be authentic rather than just sort of a monster."

Roadside Attractions/Vertical Entertainment

Because Catherine Parr had never been depicted on screen before, Alicia Vikander, who we know best from Tomb Raider and The Danish Girl, had a lot to play with, so we asked her what aspects of her character she found the most compelling to play.

"I mean, there are the clear aspects that this was such an incredible woman, not only of her time. Now most people don't know that she was a published author and that she was very politically involved for a woman of that time, obviously then she survived living with this man. And that's just worth highlighting," she said. "But I think to kind of get in the headspace of what it must have been like for women throughout history. I mean, we just live in a now thank society that has changed. It's like aspects of women of just how to kindly move yourselves. It was moments when I had just that feeling of being a young woman, of just knowing how to kind of tiptoe around sometimes how men could approach you or talk to you and you would just try to just tone it down, don't upset anyone, just don't make a thing out of it. And here you have that kind of same feeling, but it was depending on your life every day and that you shouldn't shy away from how this woman kind of had to Knowing going into the marriage that obviously the truth of what happened to the previous wives, but also knowing that this, I think she wanted to succeed. I think she wanted to kind of obviously survive and therefore she had to create this relationship that both not him needed to believe, but I think she too needed to believe because otherwise you can't get up in the morning. You have to justify your own self in this reality. And I think that kind of struggle with having to live that life was what really kind of interests me to try and tell."

Both Vikander and Law are captivating and fully immersive themselves in this time period, and there is never a shortage of talent when these two names are involved!

Firebrand is playing in the theaters and will be available for VOD on July 2. Watch the trailer below.

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Gabriella Angelina

Gabriella Angelina is an entertainment journalist with a unique perspective on the world of TV and film. With a motto of "Don't watch me, watch TV," she has become known for her insightful and often humorous critiques of the latest in entertainment.

Follow her on TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube.

Gabriella Angelina is an entertainment journalist with a unique perspective on the world of TV and film. With a motto of "Don't watch me, watch TV," she has become known for her insightful and often humorous critiques of the latest in entertainment.

Follow her on TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube.