Scarlett Johansson’s latest film Marriage Story follows a marital breakup — something she was all too familiar with when she began filming.
The actress, 34, stars as Nicole, an actress who finds her marriage to her husband, Charlie, a director, coming undone. Adam Driver stars as her husband, while Laura Dern plays Nicole’s lawyer.
“I was actually going through a divorce,” Johansson told Variety Thursday at the Venice Film Festival, where the film is due to have its world premiere this evening.
“I didn’t know what we were going to talk about,” she said of her first meeting with director Noah Baumbach for the film. “I just kind of blew into the room, ordered a glass of white wine and started complaining [about the relationship I was in].”
Baumbach didn’t appear to mind as the actress revealed her struggles at the time. Johansson split from her ex-husband Romain Dauriac in 2017 after getting married in 2014. The two share a 5-year-old daughter Rose Dorothy. She is now engaged to Saturday Night Live‘s Colin Jost.
“He was just listening and very attentive,” Johansson said. “And then he kind of cut it short and said, ‘Funny you should mention it.’”
The director warned the Avengers: Endgame actress this was “probably a project that you are either going to really want to do or not.”
Johansson had no reservations.
“It felt sort of fated in a way,” she said. “It was an experience to share with him and have him share with me. And it somehow came at just the right time.”
The film includes a meltdown between the two, which Johansson previously described as “exhausting” in an interview with As If magazine in July.
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“I did a job with Adam Driver recently which is coming out later this year,” she said. “We spent two entire days screaming at each other, brutally screaming and fighting for two full days.”
She added, “It was exhausting but if I didn’t have as strong an actor as Adam to take all the stuff I was giving him I would have been lost. For me, working with other actors is a really important part of what I do, it’s everything.”