Margot Robbie didn't realize that I, Tonya was based on real events

Margot Robbie Tonya Harding I, Tonya

One of the biggest scandals to rock the Olympic world was when Tonya Harding's ex-husband Jeff Gillooly and her bodyguard Shawn Eckhard plotted to remove Nancy Kerrigan from the 1994 U.S. Figure Skating Championships. What followed was a widely publicized attack on Kerrigan that left her with a bruised, but not broken, leg which made Kerrigan unable to compete in the championship. Nonetheless, Nancy Kerrigan was still selected for the 1994 Olympic team. After being apprehended, Gillooly implicated his ex-wife in the plot and Harding was stripped her of her 1994 U.S. Championship title as well as being banned for life from participating in any USFSA-run events as either a skater or a coach.

It was a defining event for millions of people, but not for Margot Robbie, who plays Tonya Harding in the upcoming I, TONYA, as she told Vanity Fair that at first she believed that Steven Rogers' script was entirely fictional.

I think I was about four years old when the incident took place. I was in Australia and totally unaware of the whole incident and the crazy controversy. To be honest, when I read the script, I didn’t know who Tonya Harding was, and I didn’t realize it was a true story. I thought it was entirely fictionalized and our writer Steve was so creative to come up with the quirky characters and absurd incidents.

Obviously, Margot Robbie quickly learned just who Tonya Harding was during her research for the role, which also included training for months in order to elevate her skating skills. "I played ice hockey at one point, but this was a whole new world of pain," said Robbie. I, TONYA director Craig Gillespie has said that he hopes that the film will humanize Harding, whose story is "much more tragic and complicated than what the media portrayed in its narrative." Working on the film also made Margot Robbie appreciate Tonya Harding's athletic talents.

"I don’t think I ever really appreciated [her talent] until we were figuring out how we were going to shoot the triple axel in the film,” Robbie said. The film’s director and producers assumed they could just hire a skate double to complete the stunt—even though Harding was the first American woman to perform a triple axel in competition. (After all, hadn’t the sport progressed significantly in the 23 years since the incident?) Then they were told that only six women in history had completed that complicated jump in competition—and none could double for Harding. (The filmmakers ultimately had to use visual effects to complete the scene.)

I, TONYA doesn't have a release date yet, but it debuted today at the Toronto International Film Festival.

Margot Robbie will next be seen in GOODBYE CHRISTOPHER ROBIN, in which she plays Daphne de Sélincourt, the wife of Winnie the Pooh creator A. A. Milne. Also starring Domhnall Gleeson and Kelly Macdonald, the Simon Curtis film will hit theaters on October 13, 2017.

Source: Vanity Fair



Latest Entertainment News Headlines


Featured Youtube Videos