Exclusive interview with Baby Driver’s Allison King
Tai Freligh interviews actress Allison King…
Allison King was born and raised in Los Angeles. She has been seen in many television shows, including Revenge, Drop Dead Diva, Secrets & Lies, Finding Carter, and Turn. She then went on to appear in the sci-fi drama Midnight Special. King has also made her mark in film. She was seen with a memorable role in Baby Driver, directed by Edgar Wright. She will next be seen in Thank You for Your Service alongside Miles Teller and Amy Schumer and will co-star in the upcoming film Horse Soldiers alongside Chris Hemsworth, Michael Shannon, and Michael Pena. She took time out of her busy schedule to talk to Flickering Myth’s Tai Freligh about her upcoming films and to answer some fun speed round questions.
Tell me about your scenes in Baby Driver and your character.
Sure, my character is a teller in a post office that Baby and his team rob. My role is someone who forces Baby to look at how his bad behavior has consequences in the larger world. I think that’s one of the wonderful themes of the movie and speaks to Edgar’s brilliance: our behavior and choices have profound effects on all the people in the world around us. But Edgar cloaks it in this fun, glossy, fast paced movie that’s full of music and joy. Such a talent!
What have you been hearing about your performance?
Well, I got a really nice mention in The New Yorker. From what they wrote, my performance was one of the only things they liked. It’s a little strange getting a review like that. On one hand, of course I’m flattered, and on the other hand, I love the movie and everyone involved so it’s a pretty sharp double-edged sword. But I do enjoy people’s reactions to my role. Without giving too much away, you are deeply concerned for my well being in the movie. It’s fun to hear how people process that.
Describe what it’s like to act in an Edgar Wright movie.
Edgar is amazing. I had already been a fan so I knew I was in excellent hands. I just didn’t want to screw it up. But for the most part with me he was very hands off and let me kinda do my thing. I think he’s someone who really spends the time and energy in casting the right person for his vision, and then on set he can just let that person do what he hired them to do. Other than that, I mean he’s exacting and very driven, but also incredibly warm and welcoming.
Any funny set stories?
There was one day, this was towards the end of filming and I think people were getting tired. But we were shooting in the post office and for whatever reason, like in a 15 minute time period, two cell phones went off while we were rolling. Edgar got pretty angry and told everyone, for godsake turn of your phones. Then the very next take, a phone went off, and it was Bill Pope’s! The Cinematographer! Edgar didn’t say anything he just looked at Bill. I thought it was hilarious. We all make mistakes. Luckily for Bill, he’d worked with Edgar for years so I guess Edgar just let that one slide.
You have two films coming up that deal with Afghanistan and the military. Was this by chance or was there something appealing about the subject matter to you?
This was purely by chance. I auditioned for both and booked both. I suppose there’s just something about me that screams Army Wife. They’re both also wildly different films. In that way it almost doesn’t feel like the subject matter is the same.
You’ve worked with some amazing actors previously. Who has been your favourite to work with and what did you learn from them?
By far it was Michael Shannon in Horse Soldiers. I have been a fan of his for years, since I was in acting school in New York. I was incredibly intimidated to work with him, he’s so intense in his characters, I wasn’t really sure what I was going to get on set. Turns out he’s about as lovely as a warm piece of pie. He was incredibly generous and made sure I had what I needed in the scene we shot. He went out of his way to make sure I felt welcomed and supported. The thing is, that kind of thing raises the quality of the work of everyone around you. It sets the tone of the work. It’s no surprise he’s so lauded and respected because of that attitude.
Tell me about your character in Thank You For Your Service.
I play a VA Counselor to one of the main characters who’s struggling with PTSD and a Traumatic Brain Injury. I think she’s a wonderful character and so well written by Jason Hall. She’s someone who’s struggling to provide the service these men desperately need as well as taking care of her own family at home. I think there are too many “Linda’s” in the real world who don’t get the support they need to do their jobs. It’s really a tragedy.
Describe Horse Soldiers and how your character fits into the movie.
Horse Soldiers is based on a true story of a group of special forces who went into Taliban controlled territory just after September 11th . Let me tell you, it was grueling to get back into the mindset of who we were as a country at that time. But my character is the wife of one of those brave guys who goes off to fight an unnamed enemy, in an unnamed place (she never knows where he goes for security), to come home possibly never. I can’t imagine how these families manage this much uncertainty!
What personal accomplishments are you most proud of?
That I’m still acting. I’ve been training and auditioning for years and it’s wonderful to finally have some success in projects I’m really proud to be a part of. I love these filmmakers and artists. I feel proud and lucky and grateful to be in this position.
How do you survive the zombie apocalypse?
Become a zombie.
East Coast or West Coast?
Why choose? Why not both?
Cersei, Jon Snow or Daenerys for the Iron Throne?
Daenerys. All the way. Although, I kind of want her and Jon Snow to hook it up together and be Fire and Ice all the way… in bed too.
If you could star with anybody in a movie, who would it be?
Well, I could never actually choose one. I am such an acting fangirl. But I totally have a girl crush on Reese Witherspoon… and if I could work with Michael Shannon again, my life would be complete.
If you hadn’t ended up acting, what would your alternative career been?
Maybe a Journalist. Or maybe a dog trainer. I love my dog and have loved watching his personality come through after some good training. He was found on the street and we adopted him as a scared little waif of a boy. Now he’s the most chill, friendly and happy guy in the world. It’s incredibly gratifying to watch that process. #adoptdontshop
We thank Allison King for taking the time to chat with us here at Flickering Myth. She can be found on social media at the handles below:
Photographer: Birdie Thompson
Hair: Matilde Campos
Makeup: Anton Khachaturian
Tai Freligh is a Los Angeles-based writer and can be found on Twitter.
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