Josh O’Connor knows how heavy the crown lies in modern celebrity culture.
“The Crown” Golden Globe winner, who portrayed Prince Charles on the hit Netflix series, told GQ that the fame following the role was shocking.
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“It was a fucked-up time,” O’Connor said. “I found it so impactful, people stopping me. You want to be in stuff that’s successful and seen, but I think sometimes we underestimate how powerful even a slight loss of anonymity can be.”
O’Connor continued, “What I was doing in my career before ‘The Crown’ — I just wanted to carry on doing that.”
The actor is starring in Luca Guadagnino’s “Challengers,” which originally was set to debut at the Venice Film Festival before the SAG-AFTRA strike. The film is now being released April 26, 2024. O’Connor additionally recently led “La Chimera” which premiered at Cannes. O’Connor is next set to co-star with Paul Mescal in queer romance “The History of Sound.”
O’Connor told The Hollywood Reporter earlier this year that upcoming film “La Chimera” is “much more me than ‘The Crown.'”
“I love ‘The Crown,’ but that was a moment in time, an incredible moment, and I’m eternally grateful for it, but that was a character [Prince Charles] for which I really had no concept,” O’Connor said. “Of course, I never have a full concept of any character, but I found Arthur [in ‘La Chimera’] easier to access in some ways because I sort of desired what he had. I was intrigued by him, by his interest in artifacts, and, yes, even by his ability to see the unseen.”
O’Connor wrote writer-director Alice Rohrwacher a letter to be cast in the feature, leading Rohrwacher to customize a character just for him.
“I saw ‘Happy as Lazzaro,’ and then I watched ‘The Wonders’ and ‘Corpo Celeste,’ and I wrote her a letter. And we had a Zoom call,” he said. “I was in Mexico City at the time. We had an amazing call, and I loved her. And she said, ‘I have no movie for you. But maybe in the future, I will.’ And then two months later, she said ‘OK, I was making this movie with an older actor, and now I will rewrite it so you can do it.’ It was incredible.”
He concluded, “Alice happened to be my favorite filmmaker and, very fortunately, she asked me to do this movie. Now she’s like a sister, we’re family.”
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