Joe Wright Talks ‘Woman in the Window’ Reshoots and Setting the Film in a Single Location

The long-gestating thriller is finally coming to Netflix later this year.
THE WOMAN IN THE WINDOW, Amy Adams, 2020. © 20th Century Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection
Amy Adams in "The Woman in the Window"
20th Century Studios / Courtesy Everett Collection

The long-delayed “The Woman in the Window” will finally see the light of day this year, thanks to Netflix, which scooped the thriller from Disney-owned 20th Century Studios last year. Adapted from the novel by A.J. Finn, whose identity has sparked its own fascination courtesy of The New Yorker’s lurid 2019 profile, “The Woman in the Window” is directed by filmmaker Joe Wright, and it stars Amy Adams, Julianne Moore, and Jennifer Jason Leigh. The screenplay is written by playwright and actor Tracy Letts.

There has been much ado about the exhausting process of reshoots and test screenings endured by the movie, which Wright addressed in a recent interview with Entertainment Weekly.

“There were some plot points that people found a bit confusing — I would say possibly too opaque maybe,” he said, adding that reshoots were necessary following test screenings that left audiences perplexed. “So we had to go back and clarify certain points, but I think also we tried to make sure we didn’t oversimplify anything and make things too clear. There’s an enjoyment in not knowing what’s going on, but at the same time, you have to give the audience something to hold on to — you have to lead them through the labyrinth of mystery and fear.”

Adams stars as an agoraphobic, alcoholic child psychologist who may or may not have seen an act of terrifying violence in her neighbor’s apartment. She’s joined by Julianne Moore and Jennifer Jason Leigh as are-they-or-aren’t-they doppelgängers, who taunt Adams’ Anna Fox after she witnesses the crime from behind the blinds of her New York City brownstone. Given the film’s single apartment setting, Wright cited an unusual influence in crafting “The Woman in the Window,” namely French filmmaker Robert Bresson.

“I liked the idea of the kind of minimalist constraints of making a film that is completely set in one house,” he said.

The destabilizing psychological environment of the story, Wright said, is what compelled him to take on the project. “I’m also interested in, and always have been, in the blurring between subjective and objective reality, truth and lies, and the lies we tell ourselves and how we create our own reality,” he said.

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