Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Ron Livingston, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass and Jason Reitman

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Charlize Theron [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

A couple of weeks ago, I got to fly to LA and see an advanced screening of the movie Tully, in theaters today. I also got to go to a press junket with the cast and director of Tully: Charlize Theron,Mackenzie Davis, Ron Livingston, Mark Duplass and Jason Reitman. Check out the Tully interview below and be sure to go see Tully, in theaters today.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Ron Livingston, Mackenzie Davis, Mark Duplass and Jason Reitman

Beeb Ashcroft: Good morning, everyone. My name is Beeb Ashcroft. I’m with AllMommyWants.com. And this film is so successful in walking the tightrope between humor and content that is very serious and sometimes devastating. So I’d really like to hear from all of you on how you walk that balance, to make the tone work so well.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Jason Reitman [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

Jason Reitman: It starts with Diablo [Cody]. And I think that’s — yeah, that’s where the DNA of this film is — and that’s how Diablo’s always written. She’s found things that could easily be considered tragic or dramatic. I mean, I even remember when I was making Juno and I would tell people, I’m making a movie about teen pregnancy and they would go — ohhh. I’d say, no-no-no. It’s a comedy. It’s going to be funny. Really? And they’d be confused. And now — you know, with each subsequent film I think people start to understand, oh, this is going to be a funny film, despite what we’re talking about. So I think that’s the thrill of reading her material, is that it’s right there on the page. The drama and the humor are intertwined.

Meghan Cooper: This question is for Charlize. This is Meghan from JaMonkey.com and I wanted to talk to you about what your opinion is on motherhood and how it differs in other countries and specifically, is there something uniquely American? Or something uniquely South African that stand out to you?

Charlize Theron: I think there’s something about being a parent that just is the same for everybody. There was this documentary a couple of years ago called Babies. I don’t know if you guys saw it. I saw it right before my kids came into my life and it really moved me because ultimately what you see, yes, the experiences are very different. And you know, in Mongolia you can actually tie a kid to a table and not go to jail — and here that would probably be problematic…

Jason Reitman: I mean, we still do it.

Charlize Theron: But ultimately — it’s the one thing that I think we all share is just that we’re trying to get through every day, whatever we choose to do to hopefully be the best things for yours kids. And it might be different in how we go about it in different countries, but I think, as mothers…every decision gets made based on our kids. At least I have found that.

“It takes a village to raise a kid,” and I was raised that way. I grew up with a lot of people around me and my mom really sharing me with a lot of people. It was just great to grow up that way, for me, it was always going to be how I was going to raise my kids and from the moment they came home, that first night, my village was there and they got to meet their village and that village is in their life now and I think will be in their life forever.

And I rely on those people. They are kind of like my chosen family. And I value what they bring to my kids’ lives and I know that I’m not solely responsible for how great my kids are. There’s a lot of great people who are bringing so much to their lives.

And I think this movie will maybe start that conversation a little bit more, because when we talk about help it’s always, it feels so cold. But you know, help can be something that’s really warm and, it doesn’t have to feel like this isolated thing that you’re bringing in from the outside to help you. I think the more you think about it, it’s like just becoming part of raising a child instead of just help. I think you realize the value in that and I’m so grateful for the people that I have, not only in my life, but in my kids’ lives.

Yolanda: Hi. My name’s Yolanda from Babble.com. I’m just wondering — you’re talking about how it does take a village to raise a child and our villages seem to have opened up to the Internet, social media. How do you think that has changed the look of motherhood and how we parent today?

Charlize Theron: Well, I’m no expert. And I’m not very good with social media and all of that, but I do see the positive in just being able to…have some support groups, boards that I go to when I have questions and things like that and I think it’s so valuable to have that.

But it can also become a place where you feel kind of like you’re doing it all wrong, because everything that you see and hear is telling me you’re doing it wrong. So, you have to kind of take it all with a grain of salt. But I do think there’s something nice about having more access to places and spaces where you can share your experience and change the face of what we think parenthood should look like. And the more that honest conversation takes place, I’m grateful for that. I mean, when I find my little spaces where I can do that, I’m very grateful that I can have those conversations. So like wean it out, like everything else in life.

Dawn McAlexander: Hi, I’m Dawn from EatPlayRock.com and this is for Ron and Charlize. In our modern era of women in the workforce and men often being stay-at-home dads, we often still refer to moms as the parent and dads as like the weekend person or the babysitter. What do you think it will take to change that?

Charlize Theron: You’re a dad.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Ron Livingston [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

Ron Livingston: I’m a dad. Yeah, you know, I’m not sure. I think maybe… A] more dads will have to do it and B] they’ll have to get better at it. And so, that’ll feel like, oh, this is the way it can go. And then I think they have to get a little prouder about talking about it. I think a lot of dads, even if they are primary caregivers and even if they are great at it, there’s sort of…they don’t want to, you know what I mean? They don’t want to like brag, keep bragging about that during the football game, because it doesn’t, it doesn’t go over well. So, there’s a little bit of that, I think. Yeah.

Cathy: Hi. I’m Cathy with Bel Air Mommy and I don’t know who to ask this question to. In writing the script, what came about doing the middle child as the quirky child? Because I appreciate that watching that, because my kid is the special one. He’s so special that he bit the pastor on Friday at school. So, when you were having that conversation, I was like, I just had that conversation. And I’m crying and I left one hot mess. So I wanted to know how did you guys fit that in? Because I appreciated that and it’s great to know that you’re addressing that because other moms don’t see what you’re going through — and they’re like, why can’t you pull it together?

Jason Reitman: There’s something really clever about how Diablo did that in this screenplay. You don’t really hear what was going on with her son. You also never hear the term, “postpartum depression” in the film. And these are all complicated gray areas and I think it’s really smart that Diablo never made it specific Because really, what either of those are there to serve to is this idea that we’re only supposed to present half of what it’s like to be a parent to the world. We’re only supposed to present the fact that, it’s like at the beginning when the principal says, “Oh, you’re about to pop” and Charlize goes, “Oh, it’s such a blessing.”

And, it’s the kind of subtle, brilliant joke that only she could do. But that’s how that script works. It’s playing off this idea that we’re supposed to present a version there to the world that we’re perfect. Yeah, we have a kid and life is perfect and it would be shameful to say anything otherwise. And when a great movie works really well, it makes you feel less alone. No matter what it is, no matter what you’re watching a movie about, the great ones make us feel less alone. That’s why we watch them as a group, in a movie theater.

And hopefully, by taking this kind of nuanced approach to both her relationship with her son, who finally says, “Maybe we don’t need this. I love spending time with you, but maybe we don’t need the brush.” We speak the idea of letting go of shame, putting shame down and allowing ourselves to be honest.

Press: Hi, everybody. My question is for Mackenzie and for Jason. This movie is such a great portrait, a real, raw portrait of motherhood that we don’t often see onscreen. It’s really wonderful. Was there a trick to sort of modulating what you would show and what you wouldn’t show, so as to not maybe scare off people from motherhood? Because it can be kind of scary sometimes. And also, you know, wonderful, too.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Mackenzie Davis [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

Mackenzie Davis: Jason doesn’t function in that gear. By the way, no one at this table does.

Jason Reitman: That’s the exciting thing about this group of actors. It’s their true understanding of what’s happening on the page and you know, there is a supreme understanding of humor in the drama and what’s behind everything that’s happening here and because of that they’re all interested in how to make moments feel more real. No matter what it is, no matter how self-effacing it is. And so I don’t think any of us ever had a conversation about, “Should really hold back here?”

I think there is a current in our culture that we’re not really supposed to tell our kids about sex, because then they’re going to want to do it and we’re not really supposed to tell them about child-rearing because then they won’t want to do it. But I feel like they’re going to do it either way, whether you tell them pr not, so you might as well.

Kat Balog: Hi, I’m Kat from KatBaloger.com and, Charlize, I read your interview with Chelsea Handler and you gained a lot of weight for this film and you said that you experienced a bout of depression yourself. And in the film it’s, “Girls heal, no they don’t” you know, and I thought that was a very significant line when you talked about postpartum depression. What do you want people to take from that line, you know? How do you think people should feel from that?

Charlize Theron: I think it lives in a gray area for all of us. Right? I think it’s different for all of us. But I do kind of agree with what Chelsea said in that interview, that we hurt different than men and I think we carry pain differently to men. And you know, I love that line. I loved saying it. It felt so right for Marlo. But when I think about myself, I don’t necessarily know that I believe that wholeheartedly. I don’t know if what we experience isn’t just part of building who we are. And is that a bad thing?

Like, does that mean you’re broken? Is that the part that never gets fixed? I don’t know. I kind of like not knowing, too. I mean I think that it’s going to be something that I’m going to experience more, as my journey continues as a woman and as a mom. And that’s okay. Like I don’t feel like I need to know that answer. Like it’s good to just acknowledge it and to talk about it. But I don’t know if I have the answer to it. But I do believe in concealer, yes.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Carla Renata: I kind of love you for saying that. Hi, I’m Carla Renata, the Curvy Film Critic and I wanted to ask Charlize…you have become a producer as of late and you did Atomic Blonde and you produced this one. Do you have any aspirations to produce projects or write projects for the small screen as opposed to the big screen?

Charlize Theron: Well, I’ve been producing for a while now, since Monster, and I have a Netflix show with David Fincher called Mindhunter that’s going into Season 2 right now. We did one season of a show with Netflix called Girl Boss, that’s not continuing. And we’re shooting something over the summer that’s a limited series for Netflix. I personally feel that it’s not so departmentalized anymore. Good stories are, to me, the format is so secondary and I think what’s happening is television and streaming is actually sometimes more challenging than what I find a lot of times happening in the theater.

And so in many ways I think what’s happening or has happened in that field has kind of kicked our asses a little bit in the film industry, to really step up our game and to really write more challenging things for women because women are killing it on television. And so we need more of that in film. Otherwise we’re going to be in trouble. You know? But no, I love that side of it. I love making things. I love producing.

Kathy King: Hi, I’m Kathy from MsKathyKing.com. I know you’ve touched on the subject a little bit, for Miss Theron — what do you hope women and men will take away from seeing this film? The overall.

Charlize Theron: I would have to say it’s what Jason just talked about, just to not feel alone. I know that making this film made me not feel alone. I think the honesty of the conversation that this movie starts is one that you just can’t deny, because it’s, it’s not truthful. And I think when you live and breathe in that place, then you realize you’re not alone. And I know for myself as a parent, there have been days where I really needed that. I just really needed to know that. And I think every parent will tell you that.

And that’s kind of the feedback that we’ve been getting so far. People see this movie and there’s a lot of moments where they see themselves and feel like that has never been, they have never had that opportunity to see that part of being a parent. And that’s a nice thing. I think when you can kind of do something that makes people feel on the level that’s raw and honest and undeniably truthful, that’s always a great place to be in.

We didn’t water this down. We never came from an angle to make this more appetizing for moms out there or families out there or try to say something that felt better about motherhood. We really just went for the truth and we all responded to that and I think we just felt like other people would respond to that as well.

Mildred Sun: Hi. My name is Mildred Sun with Dandelion Moms and this question is for you, Mark. What was your takeaway from the whole movie as far as motherhood? Your character reminded me of my brother. But I thought it was sweet that you wanted to get that for your sister. But what was your takeaway? You have children as well?

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Mark Duplass [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

Mark Duplass: Yeah, I have two children. They’re 10 and 6. And I remember when I first read the script, it reminded me of a conversation I had with my wife, who I think in some ways was like the earlier version of Marlo that’s hinted at of, you know, fun-loving, able to throw parties. And I think she really envisioned that she would be able to have it all and do it all.

Ot was like, somehow the Gwyneth Paltrow lore was achievable and people would look at her and we always had this joke where we say, how does she do it? And everybody wants that question asked about them. And my wife and I always joke about how she has to avoid that desire to have people saying that about her and admit that — well, I do it because I cry a lot in between and I get a shit-ton of help. You know, that’s how I do it. And so I felt that immediately, this story was very good — not to be reductive but, anti-Goop material in that way. [LAUGHTER]

And then for me personally, showing up on set, it was just so great to walk into a movie they’d already been shooting for a while. I saw the special chemistry between Jason and Charlize. They’d done a movie together before and the way that they talked to each other, just speaking candidly. When you have a successful director who’s been nominated for all these things and a successful lead actress who’s been nominated for all these things…

Jason Reitman: Won. She’s actually won…

Mark Duplass: …But you have multiple Razzies, though, so you’re good, Jason. But normally there’s this walking on eggshells kind of thing. I don’t want to bruise your ego. They were like a brother and sister together and it would be like, oh, I’m just going to do that. I’m going to be Jason to her in this scene and, you know, I think it’s great.

The character Craig is interesting to me because he, at once, is a white, privileged male trying to tell a mom how to live her life which is like, cut the man-splaining. Right? Right away it’s got a problem. But at the same time, the core of his message of being able to admit that you need some help, there’s no shame in that, is right. So I like that little complexity there.

Jason Reitman: Mark has one of my favorite improvisations I’ve ever seen from anyone on my set, where he just said to Charlize, mid-take in the Tiki Bar, :Okay, asshole, sit down.” And it was like,oh, I get this brother and sister act. I really like that.

Mark Duplass: Which again, it was exactly the way you guys treated each other on set. I really appreciated that.

Charlize Theron: It isn’t how I like people to refer to me. I think it is a term of endearment.

Myla Tosatto: Hi. I’m Myla from Enza’s Bargains and this is for any of you guys. In the movie Marlo used frozen pizza and the gross, watery, frozen broccoli to get through dinner. What’s the best and/or worst time-saving crutch you guys have had to use in a situation like that?

Mackenzie Davis: I don’t have children, but I am disgusting. I think,to melt butter and put sriracha in it and then dip bread into that. So. Recipe available.

Ron Livingston: In my house we’ve tried to sell something we call “cheesy beef,” which is, when none of us is prepared and there’s frozen hamburger meat in the freezer, I throw it in a pan and as it cooks I start shaving the stuff off and throw cheese on it and a bunch of salt and they eat cheesy beef. I don’t know how long this is going to last, but right now it’s working.

Tully Interview With Charlize Theron, Jason Reitman & The Cast

Charlize Theron [Photo Courtesy: Stacy Molter, FancyShanty.com]

Charlize Theron: I do just whatever is left over in the fridge. But I call it the “Mama Special”, which makes it sound really exotic and now I get asked, “Can we do a Mama Special?” And it’s just a big tray with everything that I could find in the fridge. And I sell it by saying, you can eat in my bed which is the stupidest thing to do.

***Stop Reading If You Want To Avoid Spoilers***

Ruby: Hi. My name is Ruby and I’m with WestSideMommy.com. This is a question for Charlize and Jason. Do you think that the timing of this being in 2018, if it were earlier, do you think it would be as relevant? I mean, I personally have friends or know people who have had night nurses, but I don’t know how common it was, you know, 10 years ago or even earlier than that. Do you think this movie would have sold earlier on?

Jason Reitman: One of the lovely things about the screenplay for this film is it plays this trick. For the first half you are given the impression that you were watching a movie that is solely about motherhood. And what you come to realize is that it’s like, have you ever looked at one of those posterswhere you look at it and then you move your head and realize there’s a totally different image there?

Then you get to the end of the movie and you realize, oh, you were watching two movies at the same time but during it you only thought you were watching one. And while Juno was about — growing up too quickly and Young Adult was about almost never growing up, or growing up too slow. This is a movie that is about that moment when you become a parent and you feel like you need to close a chapter on a portion of your life so that you can open up a space so that your child can occupy it. And that was the first thing Diablo ever said to me was when she said, “I have this idea for a script. What if a younger version of yourself could come to save you? And you could actually say goodbye to a younger version of yourself?”

And of course, we don’t want you to spoil the movie, but to speak to your question, would this movie be relatable in another time? I think people have always felt that thing, that I don’t know where I am in the arc of my life. Am I at the right time? Am I too early? Am I too late? And you start to think about the person you were when you were younger, almost as different human beings, that you would want to have a conversation with. And you’re just as curious about what they would think of you now and they would be very curious to find [out about you]…and that’s one of the brilliant things about Mackenzie’s performance is that the second viewing of this movie is Mackenzie walking into the house and going, “who do I become? Where do I live? What do I look like? What do my kids look like? Who are my kids? Who is my husband? Am I happy? Are we happy? What do I do for a living?” So as a result, the movie tells a story about actually getting to say goodbye to your younger self and I think that can exist at any time.

Tully is in theaters TODAY!

Check out the pictures from the press junket here and my post about the pre-party and premiere here and read my Tully movie review here.

Check Out The New Official Tully Trailer #Tully

Get Social With Tully

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About Dawn McAlexander

Dawn has been a music lover her entire life. She went to college in Boone, NC, an area that is rich in music and culture. She also worked as a radio deejay for 8 years and grew up in Southeastern, Va, a melting pot of different musical styles and traditions. She has been to more concerts than she can count in every genre you can imagine. She resides in North Carolina with her furbabies and her massive collection of Disney memorabilia.

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