Felicity Jones has said her latest film The Last Letter From Your Lover offered her the “perfect opportunity” to work with bestselling author Jojo Moyes.
The Hollywood actress stars in the romantic drama based on Moyes’ 2012 book, about two couples, in the present day and mid-1960s, who are linked by lost love letters rediscovered in an archive.
Jones, 37, plays Ellie Haworth, a young journalist who uncovers the letters in present-day London and decides to dig further.
Speaking at the film’s UK premiere, she told the PA news agency: “I have felt instinctively Jojo has just got a brilliant way of putting particularly female characters on to screen that are very likeable, very winning, very engaging.
“So actually Jojo and I had met years ago and wanted to do something together and then when this came along this was the perfect opportunity.”
Jones said getting into character as a journalist was “very hard”.
“I had to go deep, deep into the psyche,” she added.
“I spoke with journalists and quizzed them on everything – how it works these days, obviously how the job has changed particularly in the last 10 years, and used them as a reference really and kept coming back to these real-life people.
“We actually, having had those conversations with various journalists, we changed certain things in the script to make it more believable and more realistic.”
Nabhaan Rizwan plays archivist Rory McCallan while Callum Turner, Shailene Woodley and Joe Alwyn appear in the 1960s flashbacks.
Describing the film, Jones added: “It is two love stories, one set in the present day and one set in the 1960s, and it is about how these two stories interrelate.
“But that is what I loved about it. It gives you an old-fashioned romance with Shailene Woodley’s story with Callum Turner, and then it has this counterpoint of my character Ellie meeting Nabhaan Rizwan’s character Rory and a kind of look at modern dating in relation to meeting someone in the 1960s.
“It is a funny, feelgood, romantic film.”
Moyes, a former journalist, told PA she had previously believed the book to be “unfilmable”.
She added: “And when they took the option to adapt it I just thought this will never happen because it is a very complicated time structure and I didn’t think anything would come of it.
“And then they got two very good scriptwriters aboard, Esta Spalding and Nick Payne, who have managed to make it not just comprehensible but really smooth.
“I don’t think anybody watches it and doesn’t know where they are. It just becomes intriguing. That has been great. But I don’t think I could have done it.”
StudioCanal’s The Last Letter From Your Lover is released in UK cinemas on August 6.