Two different stars play Mossad secret agent Rachel Singer in the espionage thriller The Debt — Jessica Chastain as the young Rachel and Helen Mirren as the more mature one.
So at the premiere last night, when director John Madden was flanked by both Chastain and Mirren, he exclaimed, “It’s a Rachel Singer sandwich!”
“Kosher, I hope,” quipped Helen.
Madden praised both actresses and said that after making this movie, the range-laden Mirren “went on to play Phaedra, one of the most unnerving parts, and then a female Prospero, and then Arthur!”
“She’s a silly girl. What can you say?” chimed in Mirren herself.
By the way, Madden said he cast Chastain because he wanted “an actress the world didn’t know” so the audience wouldn’t be fixated on “how actress A turned into actress B.”
But now that Chastain is far from unknown, he’s OK with it.
Said he, “We’re the unforeseen beneficiaries of the beginnings of a career that’s going to explode!”
Tomorrow I’ll post my interview with the impressive Ms. Chastain, who’s also in The Tree of Life and The Help.
Again, it’s all about the range these days.