We’re not in any way, shape or form surprised that Laura Dern just won a Golden Globe for her role in Marriage Story. However, the star did surprise us in her backstage interview by sharing an interesting connection involving the cast and crew: They’re all touched by divorce in some way, which she credits in part for the film’s deeply personal quality.
Speaking to reporters backstage at the 2020 Golden Globes, Dern responded to a question about how she felt about the film as a woman who — like Scarlett Johannson’s lead character Nicole — has been through a divorce. But, as Dern explained, she wasn’t the only one with an emotional investment in this beautifully vulnerable story. “In just one cast, which could have been a million different people, and one crew, which could have been a million different people, we all felt personal about it,” she said, noting that there was virtually no one involved in the making of Marriage Story who “hadn’t had their family reconfigured, if you will.”
Dern, who plays the divorce lawyer of Johansson’s Nicole, also gave a nod to the shaping influences in her life on a personal level. “To my amazing divorced parents, and to my amazing stepparents, and to my amazing children who came from love despite an ending in a marriage, we’re so privileged to redefine what family looks like. As Noah [Baumbach, director] has said… I want to tell a story where endings are not failures.”
During her acceptance speech, Dern further touched on the importance of portraying families onscreen that aren’t perfect but are real. Thanking Baumbach for his “seamless perfection, guidance and mentorship,” she praised him for allowing the cast to tell “the story of a family finding their way for their child.”
It’s through acting, she said, that stars “give voice to the voiceless.” And, in the case of Marriage Story, that meant turning out a brutally honest portrayal of a heartbreaking reality for many, many families. It’s a salient reminder that families come in all different forms and, as Dern and Baumbach emphasized, “endings are not failures.”
Top Video credit: Sara Kitnick / SheKnows. Shot on an iPhone 11 Pro provided by Apple.