In the new drama Gifted, Chris Evans plays Frank, a Florida man drawn into a custody battle for his wickedly smart niece, Mary (Mackenna Grace). He’s also drawn into a relationship with Mary’s teacher Bonnie (Jenny Slate) — and Evans and Slate, much to the internet’s delight, coupled in real-life as well.
The pair has since split, leading to what would seem like an unenviable task — promoting a film alongside one’s ex — but, professionally speaking, the actors could not have nicer things to say about one another.
Evans (Captain America) recalled being wowed by Slate’s try-out for the Marc Webb-directed film. “I had a watched a bunch of auditions, and it’s tough when you watch the same scene over and over and over again,” he said (watch above). “But I saw Jenny’s and something about it was just alive and new and very grounded.”
Slate (Obvious Child) was impressed by Evans’s preparation and dedication. “He is really, really curious,” she said. “And he also has a deep love for performance. And he’s also just a really pure soul. He’s playful and fun and respectful. And it would kill him to know that he was ever being unkind or he had showed up to work and not given his all. It’s really nice to work with someone like that.”
The costars grew up close to one another in the Boston region, which only strengthened their bond. “I was a fan, and seeing him as Captain America, I didn’t really know much about him,” Slate said. “I knew he was from Boston, and I’m from Boston, too. I had very minimal facts. And that’s why I was so delighted when I got to know him as a person. He’s really beautiful.”
Gifted is now playing in select cities and opens nationwide April 14. Watch the trailer:
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