The protagonist of ‘The Mafia Tailor’ has not stopped being claimed by Hollywood since he won the Oscar thanks to ‘Bridge of Spies’, by Steven Spielberg
‘The Mob Tailor’ is a thriller set in a Chicago tailor shop in the 1950s, with a shifting narrative meant to make us question what we think we know about the characters. Ambitious and surprising, the film stars Steven Spielberg’s favorite actor, Mark Rylance (Ashford, United Kingdom, 1960), as the lead. The actor plays a tailor who sews beautiful bespoke suits for his clientele who, as the plot progresses, turn out to be mostly criminals associated with members of the Boyle crime family. Directed by Graham Moore, the film is a continuous coming and going of twists and turns that weave an ingenious mystery. Rylance, 62, demonstrates a talent trained in theater at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art, where he became the first artistic director in 1995. During the pandemic, with cinemas closed, the British actor acknowledges having shot six feature films , among them ‘Don’t look up’ by Adam McKay for Netflix and this ‘The mafia tailor’, which arrives in Spanish cinemas on May 20.
-Since he won the Oscar for ‘Bridge of Spies’ (2015) Hollywood seems to have surrendered at his feet.
-It was hard for them to find me, really. I have been working in England for decades, but since I got the Oscar I get many more opportunities. I’m happy being a theater actor, I wouldn’t mind working only on stage, but if someone comes along and offers me a role that’s worth it, I don’t turn them down. I did a lot of movies before ‘Bridge of Spies,’ but none of them were as successful.
-The tailor’s clothes are a metaphor in the story.
-As the story progresses, we undress the protagonist. Clothing is a way of communicating with the outside world and, in this case, my character is dedicated to dressing a group of criminals. What he thinks we see in the suits he builds. He is a craftsman who does not stitch without thread.
-It is true that he spent time in a real tailor shop.
-Yes. At Savile Row, Huntsman & Sons, where I learned the art of cutting and sewing, two very different trades, as the film underlines. There is a specific process in the work of an actor that consists of understanding the essence of the characters. I receive very specific papers that need preparation. I am a meticulous actor and it amuses me to get into the skin of these men without fear or ties.
-You said you are worried about Elon Musk. Does he consider himself an activist actor?
-I am. I am concerned about the environment and I am very concerned about the direction the planet is taking. I think that we actors have the job of moving people, of moving people with stories that invite us to think about the common good.
Zoey Deutch and Mark Rylance in ‘The Mob Tailor’.
What was the hardest thing about learning to sew?
-I thought I knew how to sew, but I realized that making suits is something completely different. I had to learn how to hold the thimble properly and the intricacies of the many pieces that make up a perfectly made suit. But also the experience of the character, his security at work. When a craftsman is talented, within the working class, he receives the admiration of his clients and his competitors. Tailoring is not a trade, but an art.
Does he look anything like his character?
-I also try to be better every day in my work. I want to be a teacher who does not stop loving his profession. I have always considered myself working class. I guess my sense of responsibility towards work is something inherited from my father and grandfather. In my family, we are all working class.
-Enjoy all the characters you play.
-I don’t judge them and that allows me to enjoy. We actors understand that we have to love all the characters, from a king to a psychopath, and let the public be the one to judge your work. Leonard has not been an easy character, on the contrary, I had to learn the meaning of everything he does, from cutting the fabric to painting a line, because nothing he does is improvised.
-He cares about the way he dresses.
-More since I’ve shot this movie. I’ve always been interested in the play that a jacket can give a character on stage, but I’ve never worried about my personal style. Now it’s different, Leonard has taught me to dress elegantly. I have a new tailor and I understand the special relationship between your tailor and his client.
-During the pandemic he shot six films.
-Yes. I have a hard time not working. At this point in my career I want to build on success, but circumstances have meant that many of the films are being released almost simultaneously in theaters.
#Mark #Rylance #considered #working #class