Zach Braff says he wanted to ‘base’ latest project around Florence Pugh

Zach Braff has said he always had Florence Pugh in mind for his latest film, A Good Person, and wanted to “base” it around his former partner.

The 47-year-old actor and filmmaker has written and directed the upcoming movie, which stars 27-year-old Pugh in the lead role and explores the impact of the opioid crisis in America.

Speaking to the PA news agency on the red carpet at the UK premiere of A Good Person on Wednesday, Braff said: “That was part of the initial inspiration for the film, was writing with Florence.

UK premiere of A Good Person
Florence Pugh and Zach Braff attending the UK premiere of A Good Person (Ian West/PA)

“And I wrote during the pandemic and there are a couple of themes I wanted to write about, and I wanted to base it around Florence.”

Braff and Pugh were first romantically linked in 2019, but Pugh, who previously defended the pair’s 21-year age gap, confirmed they were no longer in a relationship last year.

Braff, the star of TV medical comedy Scrubs, also explained how he drew on his own experiences of grief when writing the film, which follows Allison whose life collapses after she survives a car accident, which kills her fiance and his sister.

“It was the pandemic, and it was time to write something and my own experience with grief is kind of what bubbled up and that’s what I wanted to write about”, he said.

“It was just kind of there in front of me and that seemed like the logical thing.”

Meanwhile Pugh, who also produced the film, praised Braff’s writing style, telling PA: “He’s very, very good at writing unbelievably serious life situations, whilst partnered with some amazingly human hilarious one liners and I think that is how we live.

“We do go through life with dark things that we need to face, and we also laugh along with our family or friends at the same time.

“It’s human to find humour in even the darkest of times.”

The actress also spoke about the preparatory work she undertook to portrayal the role of Allison, who becomes addicted to prescription drugs.

“We spoke to people, we did lots of research and really tried to make it as authentic and as real and as human as possible,” she said.

Pugh added: “The mental prep is asking and talking and making sure that you’re in the right conversations, making sure that you’re taking notes, understanding how people get into these situations how it’s not black and white, and this can happen to anyone.

“And actually, it’s more to do with the physicality that I felt was necessary, of studying how it hurts, how it actually hurts the body every single day. So I took a lot of seriousness in studying that.”

A Good Person is in cinemas from 24 March and on Sky Cinema from 28 April.