Felicity Jones and Nabhaan Rizwan are two of the stars of Netflix’s newly released romantic drama The last letter from your lover. The film jumps between a modern love story that plays out between Jones and Rizwan’s characters, while a steamy affair takes place in the 1960s between Shailene Woodley’s Jennifer Stirling and Callum Turner’s Anthony O’Haire.
ComingSoon editor-in-chief Tyler Treese spoke with Felicity Jones and Nabhaan Rizwan about their roles in the Netflix movie, where they added something to a heavy drama and the death of love letters in the modern age. Check out the video below, or watch the full printout.
Tyler Treese: Felicity, despite being based on a book, there are a number of changes in your character’s relationship. To prepare for this role, did you read the original book, or do you prefer to go out of the script as there should be differences?
Felicity Jones: I find it very useful to read the book. As you say, it was interesting to see what was different from the book to the script and how it informed the character. In the book, Ellie has an affair herself, which is part of what clearly begs her interest in Jennifer’s affair history. But for the sake of the script, it didn’t feel right to have it. It felt like it made more sense for Ellie to be a little enterprising and a little lost, and also to make sure the stories don’t just mirror each other in such an obvious way.
Nabhaan, your character is involved in this very modern love story. Meeting through work is already a kind of difficult situation, and there is the strange situation of being read and the uncertainty that entails, but Rory navigates it all well and he respects boundaries. Can you talk to this portrayal?
Nabhaan Rizwan: Yes, absolutely. I think it is a very realistic depiction of what is happening in the world and that the border is important. And I think I love the fact that Ellie is quite forthcoming in her approach romantic and that kind of surprising Rory. Then they learn each other’s rhythms, and then they’re gone.
Felicity, your character is learning about himself by reading these old love letters. What did you really take away from the script and Ellie’s character arc?
Jones: Yes, I think early on it gives her such hope when she finds the letters. I think she has become a little disillusioned with life and what makes sense. So when she finds the letters, she’s just completely obsessed with them. I think they give her a sense of hope that love exists and that love lasts. I think she has become quite cynical because of various disappointing experiences she has had in her own romantic life.
Nabhaan, there are early some fun scenes in the filing room where Rory will not let Ellie come in with her food and drink. It’s a combination of being a stickler for the rules, but there’s also a little flirtation later. How great was it to get humor added to what is otherwise a very serious film?
Rizwan: Yes, absolutely. That was a big responsibility, I would say. It was a joy to bring it to life with Felicity, and it was just a joy to film and a completely different thing for me too and in a direction that I personally would also push for. So yeah, that was it, it was great to have that responsibility.
Jones: It’s so much nicer to make humorous cartoons as an experience. So I think both Nabhaan and I have probably done much heavier serious work, and you realize that it’s a lot easier to make more blond stories.
Felicity, the film is a reminder that love letters are truly a lost art. I don’t think slipping into Instagram DMs has the same type of sophistication. Is it time for them to return? Should we bring back love letters?
Jones: Yes. I mean, yes, definitely. I’m a little romantic. I think the idea of a love letter is lovely. I think you need to be more honest when you actually write a letter, while you can hide it a little more when writing an email or a text message. While there is something, be quite open in a letter and actually say what you mean.
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