Knives Out star Ana de Armas almost turned down the leading role in Rian Johnson’s smash hit mystery film.
The Cuban actress was initially put off the project before she had even read the script, as the character of Marta Cabrera was described merely as a “caretaker, Latina,” and “pretty.”
De Armas told Flaunt Magazine that she really “pays attention” to the descriptions of the characters that she might play. "I'm sure whoever did it wasn't thinking about what that meant but for me,” she added. “I was just like, ‘Oh no, I'm not doing this!' What do you mean—caretaker, Latina, pretty?’”
The 32-year-old says that “things could have been very different” if Johnson, who wrote and directed Knives Out, hadn’t sent her a more detailed and accurate breakdown of Marta.
"My character was a diamond," she recalled. "When they sent the whole script and I read the whole thing I realised, ‘Oh my gosh. I have to do this.'"
De Armas probably feels very relieved that she signed up for Knives Out, as Marta is arguably the lead of the entire film, alongside Daniel Craig’s Detective Benoit Blanc. Critics immediately raved about her performance, too, which was deemed to be so superlative that she received a Best Actress nomination at the Golden Globes.
Her career is now going from strength to strength, too. Next year she will star opposite Ben Affleck in the psychological erotic thriller Deep Water, as well as Paloma in Daniel Craig’s James Bond farewell No Time To Die, and also Marilyn Monroe in Andrew Dominik’s take on Joyce Carol Oates’ book Blonde.
Filming has already finished on all three of these movies, but the coronavirus pandemic means that the actual release dates are still very much up in the air.