At the end of the premiere, the audience took to their feet to give “Don’t Worry Darling” a five-minute ovation – yet the day did little to tamp down intrigue about its stars and alleged behind-the-scenes tension.
After much anticipation, Olivia Wilde’s “Don’t Worry Darling” finally had its world premiere at the Venice International Film Festival.
Before the film screening on Monday, hundreds of screaming Harry Styles fans swarmed the edges of the red carpet trying to get a glimpse of him. His rapturous reception made the Timothee Chalamet mania seen on Friday seem modest in comparison.
Star Florence Pugh also made a movie star entrance on the Lido donning a sparkling, off-the-shoulder Valentino and, like Styles, stopping to talk to fans on her way down the carpet.
By the time the premiere was over, audiences took to their feet, giving “Don’t Worry Darling” a five-minute ovation, and Styles could be seen in the balcony giving his co-star Nick Kroll a big hug. Yet premiere day did little to tamp down intrigue about the film and its stars. Some even took note of who was sitting next to who in the theater.
Many keyed in on the film’s press conference earlier in the day, with hopes that reports about behind-the-scenes tension with Pugh would be addressed or clarified.
Wilde, before the premiere, said she didn’t want to contribute to “the endless tabloid gossip” and “the noise.”
“The internet feeds itself,” Wilde said. “I don’t need to contribute, I think it’s significantly well-nourished.”
Pugh is in the middle of production on “Dune 2,” a massive blockbuster (also a Warner Bros. joint) and is expected to go straight back after her Venice obligations. Though the star of the film, she did not attend the press conference as her flight had not yet landed.
“Florence is a force and we are so grateful that she is able to make it tonight,” Wilde said. “I know as a director how disruptive it is to lose an actor even for a day.”
Behind-the-scenes drama rarely extends beyond internal industry gossip, but the question of exactly what happened in the making of “Don’t Worry Darling” has become a source of global intrigue.
— La Biennale di Venezia (@la_Biennale) September 5, 2022
Lack of clarity about everything from Shia LaBeouf’s departure from the film early on, to Pugh’s perceived lack of public support for the project on her social media accounts, has been simmering on TikTok and Twitter for some time and then furthered by a report in the Hollywood newsletter Puck, citing various anonymous studio and production sources.
Wilde, for her part, has been nothing but effusive about her lead actor. In an interview with The Associated Press, she spoke at length about Pugh’s extraordinary talent saying that what she did with the role was “singularly brilliant” and that the character of Alice is a “heroine for the ages.”
Still, questions remain about why Pugh has not been posting much about the film on her Instagram. She didn’t hype the trailer, or say anything about getting into Venice.
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