Anya Taylor-Joy was taught every chess move only five minutes before filming a scene in The Queen’s Gambit.
Anya jokes that she was born in Miami “on a fluke” because her parents were simply visiting.
A year later, she was discovered by Sarah Doukas, the modeling agent who also discovered Kate Moss and Cara Delevingne. Sarah actually spotted Anya walking her dog outside of Harrods.
Anya recalled her first meeting with Scott, saying, “I was so passionate about the character and story. When I got to the restaurant, I was like, ‘It’s not all about chess! And she needs to be a redhead!’ and he was like, ‘I agree! Sit down, let’s have this discussion!'”
She explained, “It was my first experience of rejection, like true rejection. And it was Disney which, for me, was like, ‘Oh my god,’ even though I look nothing like [Angelina Jolie]. I definitely cried for a very long time after that happened.”
Marielle talked about going back to acting after years of directing, saying, “I was feeling burned out on directing and movie-wise wasn’t sure what my next big project was going to be. So I said yes to doing this very different type of project that required a different skill set from me, sort of just to shake things up, if anything.”
Harry elaborated, saying, “Working with Joel and Ethan [Coen] was a massive moment for me, in terms of their commitment to saying, ‘I think you can do this.'”
Thomas said that out of all of his roles, he’s still recognized the most as Sam.
Anya explained, “Beth is discovering the world of chess, and I could bring that awe and magic to it as well.”
Creator Scott Frank said Anya is the best crier he’s ever worked with and there were so many small moments like this one that Anya made memorable because of her ability to shed a single tear.
Thomas said, “That was a very personal thing. It was very interesting when we came together [to play chess], because we saw that everyone had been working on developing their little habits.”
She explained, “I wanted her to have a very distinctive way of moving the pieces that was still, whilst very quick and ruthless, undeniably feminine. Beth doesn’t have to choose.”
Creator Scott Frank said one of his favorite scenes in the whole show is when Jolene and Beth sit and talk about squash.
Harry said he owes a lot to Bruce Pandolfini, who was a chess consultant on the series.
Anya thought it was important that the glamorous costumes made a statement about how “you can be a brainiac and like nice clothes at the same time” and through her clothes, Beth is “unapologetically feminine.”
News – 25 “The Queen’s Gambit” Cast Facts For Anyone Who Loves Anya Taylor-Joy And The Rest Of The Actors