"Terrence Malick is a sculptor: he puts a lot of clay on the table"

Her boyfriend, Michael Sheen, was cut from auteur Terrence Malick's latest film, along with Rachel Weisz, but Rachel McAdams survived the edit of 'To The Wonder'.

Rachel McAdams (Credit: Wenn)
She tells 'The Independent' newspaper: “I think Terry is like a sculptor and the story presents itself to him. He puts a lot of clay on the table and sees what comes out of it, which I appreciate. He's not stuck to something, if you're out and something is not working then it's fine and you just move onto something else.”

In the film, Canadian-born McAdams is cast as the romanticised ex-girlfriend of Ben Affleck's lost protagonist. 

Affleck plays Neil, who  marries European beauty Marina (former Bond girl Olga Kurylenko). When the relationship sours Neil seeks out his childhood sweetheart (McAdams).

She explains that Malick expends as much energy preparing the actors as he does on the shoot: “Terry took me through my character's background, taking me around the neighbourhood where he believed my character would have grown up, saying, 'maybe you lived in that house or maybe you went to that high school',” she explains. “It was always 'maybe', it was really up to me to decide in the end, so I thought it was a really magical and liberating experience.”

There were down-sides. “Some days I was lost but I knew that something interesting would come out of that."

Next up McAdams will be seen lining up in the Brian De Palma thriller 'Passion', where she plays a ruthless advertising executive who takes her seemingly meek assistant (Noomi Rapace, 'The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo') under her wing. But when McAdams takes one of her assistant's ideas as her own, there follows a gripping revenge tale.

“I found working with Brian creatively satisfying,” says McAdams. “I felt like he had a clear vision of what that film was going to be and I felt free to interpret my character, and he was very open to Noomi and I trying whatever we wanted. He shoots very fast and we had lots of time to try things. He allowed us to find our own way and be as experimental as we wanted to be, and the weirder we were, the funnier it seemed to him.”

Her next move is Richard Curtis's time-travel romp, 'About Time'.  

'To The Wonder' is released on 22 February