When a public tragedy occurs, everyone follows the story in the news and, from that information, presume they know the whole story. Now, after having worked to retell the Tonya Harding story, actress Margot Robbie says people may have gotten the wrong idea. She hopes the public will go into I, Tonya with open eyes and take a second look at the rivalry that left one figure skater seriously injured and another one publicly ostracized.
Margot Robbie Talks About Playing a Hated Public Figure
In speaking with E! News, Ms. Robbie opened up about playing Tonya Harding, whose name still stirs strong emotions in the hearts of millions of Americans. The actress said that playing the disgraced public figure was a tremendous challenge. Certainly, playing a celebrity who is still living presents a unique set of circumstances, but Margot says it was public opinion that really affected her performance.
“[It was] kind of an exciting challenge to approach a situation [where] people had already made up their minds, or thought they knew all about [it], and kind of give them a reason to explore it further and explore another side to the story,” said Ms. Robbie.
She went on to explain that playing the still-living figure skater did affect her acting, as well. She knew that her portrayal of the character would be analyzed and compared to the real Tonya Harding. She was concerned that figure skating fans would be especially critical, as well as Ms. Harding herself.
Conversely, Robbie says having access to Tonya and others involved in the incident also helped her performance. The I, Tonya actress was able to hone her portrayal and play a more authentic character through the research and interviews made available to her during filming.
Margot Robbie and Tonya Harding Reunited for the I, Tonya Premiere
During filming, Margot and Tonya developed a strong friendship, one that seems to have lasted far beyond the last day of shooting, reports People magazine. The pair attended the Svedka Vodka sponsored premiere of the film together, which took place in Los Angeles. Harding, now 47-years-old, and 27-year-old Margot stopped to pose for photos and talk about the film.
“Amazing,” exclaimed Ms. Robbie, upon observing the turnout for I, Tonya.
Harding was equally impressed by the strong interest in her story. While accompanying the actress, Tonya was seen wiping tears away from her eyes. She was overwhelmed by the show of support for the film.
I, Tonya, starring Margot Robbie, Sebastian Stan, and Allison Janney, is currently showing in theaters.