The Good Place's D'Arcy Carden Knows It's Crazy to Think You'll Make It As an Actor

On The Good Place, a comedy about what happens to a group of medium-good people in the afterlife, D’Arcy Carden plays an immortal assistant named Janet, who’s not quite a robot, not quite human. The show, currently in its third season, unpacks the nature of morality, ethics, and good versus evil in dramatic fashion,…

Illustrator Lisa Hanawalt on Her New Comic Coyote Doggirl and the Appeal of 'Horse Girls'

The term “gross-out humor” doesn’t conjure up much subtlety or imagination. But for artist and illustrator Lisa Hanawalt, there’s something profoundly funny in the gap between the grotesqueness of everyday life and the inevitability of its existence. In one of her best-known comics, originally drawn for the…

Madeline's Madeline Director Josephine Decker on Dictatorship and Democracy in Art

Josephine Decker’s third feature film, Madeline’s Madeline, is an exquisite collision of content and medium, a story that could only be told in cinema. A fractured exploration of mental illness and the art-making process, the film is shot tightly, scored with thick and experimental acapellas and occasional out-of-sync…

Director Augustine Frizzell on Representation in Her Druggie Dropout Buddy Comedy Never Goin' Back

Augustine Frizzell wanted to see a movie that represented her teen experience, and so she made it. The result is the 39-year-old writer/director’s first feature Never Goin’ Back, in select theaters today via juggernaut distributor A24. The movie follows two coke-snorting, table-waiting, shit-talking, high-school…

Director Desiree Akhavan on The Miseducation of Cameron Post and Reimagining the Teen Movie

On paper, Sundance Grand Jury Prize winner The Miseducation of Cameron Post might sound like the making of a somber tearjerker. Chloë Grace Moretz stars as the titular Cameron, a teenage girl growing up in Montana in 1993 whose boyfriend dramatically discovers her making out with her best girl friend on homecoming…

Lauren Greenfield on Generation Wealth and the Culture of Money That Made Trump Possible

In the 1990s, director/photographer Lauren Greenfield began a project taking pictures of high school students at her affluent Los Angeles alma mater, Crossroads. One of the shots was of a group of boys flashing what Greenfield thought were dollar bills at her. Later at home, when she reviewed the camera’s film, she…

Hereditary Director Ari Aster on Taking Family Tragedy and Curdling It Into a Nightmare

Last week, I met Ari Aster, the writer and director of the horror film Hereditary, in the A24 office. For about 20 minutes, we talked about genre (he originally shopped Hereditary as a “family tragedy that curdles into a nightmare”), subverting expectations (undoubtedly a reason the film has proved so divisive), the…

Toni Collette on the Horror and Beauty of Grief in Hereditary

“H’aw’ya?” Toni Collette asked me as I entered the conference room at A24's New York City office on Monday. It’s hard to say which was weirder: hearing the actor’s natural Australian accent or seeing her warm and smiling. She spends much of the movie she was in town promoting—Ari Aster’s familial tragedy/horror hybrid …

Gina Gershon Didn't Like Scripts She Was Receiving, so She Wrote Her Own One-Woman Show

“We can’t do a whole interview about Showgirls,” Gina Gershon exhaled, not five minutes into our conversation at Odeon in Tribeca on May 21. I didn’t mean to exasperate her so soon—I couldn’t help it. The woman who played Cristal Connors in Paul Verhoeven’s cult classic of Vegas excess and g-strings—a movie I have…

Revenge Director Coralie Fargeat on Playing With Film Clichés and the Artistic Power of Blood

“Women always have to put up a fucking fight,” Revenge’s main villain, a chiseled, wealthy businessman, at one point spits at the movie’s heroine Jen while the two are locked in a violent duel. French director Coralie Fargeat’s new movie, released May 11, is the story of one blood-drenched, bullet-drilled, goretastic…

Asia Argento on Her Film Scarlet Diva and Why It's Okay for Women to Be Enraged Right Now

“I’m Anna Battista, I’m 24 years old, I live in Rome, and I’m the most lonely girl in the world,” Asia Argento’s lead character, a famous young Italian actress, proclaims in the writer and director’s 2000 film, Scarlet Diva. A semi-autobiographical depiction of Argento’s life, the film follows Anna, a wandering party…

Talking With Tanya Saracho About Vida, Her Thrilling New Queer Latinx TV Series

On Sunday, Starz will air the first episode of Vida, a new series about two Mexican American sisters who, after their mother’s death, return to their quickly gentrifying neighborhood on the Eastside of LA. The show is groundbreaking, you may have heard, for its writer’s room, which is helmed by Mexican-born playwright…