Jessica Chastain Reveals Her Election ‘Nightmare’ at ‘Miss Sloane’ AFI Premiere

Will Thorne
Variety

Miss Sloane” is about powerful women in Washington D.C., fighting against an overwhelmingly male-dominated political system. Sound familiar?

At the film’s AFI red carpet premiere at the Chinese Theater on Friday night, the election and its uncanny synchronisation with “Miss Sloane” themes was on everybody’s mind.

“It’s a nightmare,” said the film’s lead actress Jessica Chastain of this week in politics. “Right here, talking about this right now, this week, it’s not the best experience, but it’s good when it’s a movie that has the message this movie does.”

Chastain, who plays the titular tough-as-nails lobbyist, admitted she wishes she had a little more time to prepare herself before discussing the film after the election. However, she said she feels that the message of female empowerment in the film is more important now than ever.

“I started doing my research and looked at the list of the most successful female lobbyists, and I met them all and asked about their personal lives, their work lives, what it’s like working in a political system that’s dominated by men. I looked at the way that they presented themselves to the world and so much of my character was based on my conversations with those women,” Chastain said.

Even though the mood of the event was somber because of the election, stars including Chastain, Gugu Mbatha-Raw and a pregnant Alison Pill lightened proceedings as they hugged in the middle of the carpet and posed for cameras, recreating the central trio of powerful women in the film.

Director John Madden added that, although they had always intended for the the film to be politically current, there was no way he or anyone else could have predicted how important the film’s central issue would become after the election. 

“It’s not usual in a film that has this kind of milieu, to have three women at the center of it, and one woman in particular, in an environment that we tend to associate with men,” Madden said. “But of course, in the current political debacle that we’ve been watching, this issue of women in politics has become front and center of every political discussion that’s been going on. It’s one of those odd moments in time that arrives which synchronizes completely with the film.”

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