‘She Said’ Star Jennifer Ehle on the Importance of Intimacy Coordinators on Set

Jennifer Ehle is front and center in one of the very best scenes of 2022. Ehle plays Laura Madden in Maria Schrader’s movie She Said, which revisits Megan Twohey (Carey Mulligan) and Jodi Kantor’s (Zoe Kazan) tireless work for the New York Times while investigating acts of sexual abuse committed by former film producer Harvey Weinstein. The film puts a heavy emphasis on spotlighting the women who bravely came forward with testimonies that ultimately put Weinstein behind bars, and one of those women is Laura Madden.

Madden is featured throughout the film, but there’s one scene in particular where she meets with Kantor that’s absolutely brimming with raw emotion and also includes one of the most devastating lines of the film; “It was like he took my voice that day, just when I was about to start to find it.” Mulligan will likely be the She Said representative in the Best Supporting Actress category this year, and very much deserves that nod, but if I had any say in the nominations, Ehle would be in the mix right along with her.

Image via Universal

With She Said now playing in theaters nationwide, I got the chance to catch up with Ehle to talk about her experience making the film and how she thinks the industry has changed for the better. She began:

“This is gonna sound strange, but I think that being given this opportunity to attempt to play Laura in this movie has helped me reclaim part of my voice that maybe I didn’t even realize was missing. I don’t know. It’s been very empowering to be a part of telling this story.”

She Said well covers the necessary broad strokes and details of this large ensemble’s involvement in the investigation, but one of the film’s strongest qualities is that it does so while also including in-between, deeply human moments that contribute to making the characters’ lives feel whole. Ehle pinpointed one particular beat for Laura that, perhaps, wasn’t vital to the chain of events in the film, but was key to fleshing out her world.

“You really don’t have that much time with her, but the moments are so beautifully curated, these sort of windows into her life, these glimpses of the life she has and what she’s going through before the opportunity or the gauntlet is thrown down of whether she’s going to even speak to these journalists, let alone have the courage to step forward and break the silence and go on the record. The moments are so beautifully curated. I know that there was one moment that meant a lot to me. I remember Maria said, ‘When your daughter says that your son wants to take his pillow to Cornwall,’ because we’re about to go on vacation — and it was such a lovely little specific moment because this family’s about to pack to go the next morning. You know that feeling when you’re gonna leave the next morning to go somewhere and particularly with all these children and everything? And the daughter is like, ‘He wants to take his pillow!’ And Maria was just like, ‘Oh, we’re not taking any pillows!’ And it was such a wonderful thing to feel like such a real mom in that moment. I like that. I was like, ‘Oh, I think I’m getting a sense of this person now,’ so that was really fun.”

Jennifer Ehle in She Said
Image via Universal

Before wrapping up our conversation, I asked Ehle for a current industry norm that her younger self first starting out in the business would be thrilled to know eventually becomes a given. Here’s what Ehle chose:

“Intimacy coordinators. That would have made a huge difference to my 90s. That is an extraordinary thing. We now have a number on our SAG card to call if we feel like something needs to be shared. The communication, the dialogue, the sense of how deep this goes in all walks of life, how deep this problem goes, how whenever there’s a discrepancy of power people are vulnerable to abuse. I think the awareness of that globally is huge.”

Looking for more from Ehle on her experience working on She Said? You can find just that in the full video interview at the top of this article!

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