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Jessica Chastain Explains Why She Started ‘Freckle,’ Her Production Company

Jessica Chastain Explains Why She Started 'Freckle,' Her Production Company

Jessica Chastain leaves no stone unturned. She’s got quite a few things coming up: she’s a warrior opposite Charlize Theron and Emily Blunt in “The Huntsman: Winter’s War,” she recently shot  “The Zookeeper’s Wife” in Prague and now she’s in talks to do Susanna White’s “Woman Walks Ahead” and Aaron Sorkin’s feature debut “Molly’s Game.”
While shooting John Madden’s Washington lobbyist drama “Miss Sloane,” Chastain dropped the news that she is launching her own production company, Freckle Films. (@jes_chastain recently tweeted: “Nothing but my freckles. At least I’ll be on time,” about her Piaget photo, above.) Chastain joins the likes of Entertainment Weekly cover subjects Reese Witherspoon (“Gone Girl,” “Wild”) and Elizabeth Banks (“Pitch Perfect 2”) as an actress unwilling to rely just on the projects studios offer. Famously, she starred in Kathryn Bigelow’s  “Zero Dark Thirty” as a CIA agent smarter than the men in the room who was not defined by her relationships, but by her work. In ‘Interstellar” she played a brainy scientist who was written for a man (Topher Grace admitted to feeling like he was playing the girl part), and in “The Martian” she’s the captain who leaves her astronaut stranded on Mars and then risks her life to save him. 

Chastain will be president of the new company, working with development executive Elise Siegel. Chastain is not just doing this just for herself, she wrote me:

“I really enjoyed producing ‘Disappearance of Eleanor Rigby’ and I wanted to do more. A week after my speech at the Critics’ Choice last year about diversity, I was doing press in London for ‘A Most Violent Year’ and they were asking me what I was doing to create more opportunities for others. It really got me thinking. I put it out to my agents [at CAA] that I wanted to create a production company. I was very happy when I heard Maven wanted to get involved. I’m developing projects that celebrate many different voices and points of view. I didn’t start the company to only create more opportunities for me. I’ve been very lucky in the work I get to do. I want to celebrate artists that we don’t get to hear from. I want to learn about the world around me and hopefully Freckle Films will help nurture that.” 

Freckle Films is starting off with financing via a first look overhead deal with Trudie Styler (“Still Alice”) and “The Kids Are All Right” producer Celine Rattray’s Maven Pictures. They have already optioned two books with Freckle: Greer Macallister’s “The Magician’s Lie” and Camille Pagan’s “Life and Other Near-Death Experiences.” 

READ MORE: “Reese Witherspoon, Nicole Kidman Take Matters into Their Own Hands with HBO’s ‘Big Little Lies'” 

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Comments

Joanne Butcher

But choosing that particular photo focuses on her as a sex object. Whereas a photo of her in her Martian helmet would show her as an alluring actress making a ton of money in a hugely successful film! It’s not enough for journalists to blame their subjects or the industry for their photo choices; you are the ones who choose how you present women in your stories.

Anne Thompson

I get your comment about the choice of photo–I went with it because of the freckle anecdote. Just because she’s a businesswoman and feminist doesn’t mean she isn’t playing the alluring actress game too.

JoeP

I guess she is no longer doing the film with Xavier Dolan? Too bad. Was looking forward to it.

Tzan

Adding a less sexualized picture to the article might have been nice. A story about a man starting a business venture would have been afforded a business-like photo.

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