Eloise Mumford, who plays Ana’s friend Kate in the series, talks set life, Fifty Shades Darker and working with Dakota Johnson
GLAMOUR: So could you tell us about your audition process?
Eloise: It was a fairly long process – because the book was such a literary phenomena they really wanted to make sure they got all the casting right. It was fairly exhausting, I met with the casting director and auditioned for her and then the final step was doing the table read with the rest of the cast. But a few days later I was on the plan to Vancouver. The whole course of it took a couple of months but the end of it was really exciting.
GLAMOUR: So when do you start filming 50 Shades Darker?
Eloise: I’m not sure I’m allowed to say but it is happening and I am really looking forward to seeing the rest of the cast again and the crew. We had such a wonderful family and I mean, obviously it was a very bonding experience to shoot this movie because there was so much hype around it and so much anticipation and so everywhere we went there was fans. We all bonded a lot throughout the whole experience so I can’t wait to see them again.
GLAMOUR: How would you say your character changes in the second and third films?
Eloise: Well on the second film she finds out the exact nature of Anna and Christians relationship is and that’s a huge moment for her and for her friends because obviously Kate is a very protective friends and a very passion and fiery person. When she does find out she is extremely worried about Anna’s wellbeing so that’s a huge moment of change for her. She also falls in love with Elliot and their relationship stronger and more committed so I’m really looking forward to that.
GLAMOUR: And how did you and Dakota work on your chemistry when you were rehearsing and things?
Eloise: We got along really well right off the bat, most of the stuff was in our apartment for the first few weeks of filming so we were getting to know each other in the process of filming. She is so much fun, she is super hilarious and we bonded over the process of it all, and the excitement of it all and had a great time together.
GLAMOUR: And are you excited about having a new director for the second film?
Eloise: I really love Sam Taylor Johnson, she’s one of my favourite directors I’ve ever worked with – she is certainly in my favourite 3 directors I have ever worked with. She is just incredible an incredible artist who brought so much to the film and it was great to have her there. So it’s going to be really hard not to have her there but we are always looking forward but it will be big shoes to fill.
GLAMOUR: And did EL James help you develop the character of Kate?
Eloise: Well what I think is so great is that EL James wrote an incredible character in Kate, a more dimensional and realistic woman, who at the same time is very loyal and super fun, and also very protective and adventurous so there’s a lot of dimensions to her to be playing with. It was great to have EL James on set, because it really helped and if there were any questions she would be there to answer them. It was also great to have her as a sound board as well to make sure we’re getting everything right.
GLAMOUR: And would you let your friends date Christian Grey and if so, what advice would you give them?
Eloise: That’s a hard question. Yes I would, because I think his heart’s in the right place I think that him and Ana are soul mates and, when it’s love, who are you to stand in the way of that, as long as there’s no abuse and there’s kindness, love and honesty and respect between the two people, then I’m all for people following their heart.
GLAMOUR: And would you give your friends any similar advice?
Eloise: I think I’d give very similar advice to Kate, be careful, take care of yourself but that’s the sort of advice you would give to all of your friends and at the same time follow your heart and if you need anything I’ll be here, and talk me through the whole process. Don’t keep me in the dark…. and take me on the helicopter sometimes.
GLAMOUR: Would you date Christian?
Eloise: Well I am in a really great relationship so I certainly won’t be trading in my boyfriend anytime soon.
GLAMOUR: And had to read the books before you did the film?
Eloise: Yes, I read the first book in preparation for the audition and then I read the second two right after I’d been cast, and then I started shooting so I read all three of them. It was good to have the book as a sort-of road map. It’s really great to have a book to base everything on.
GLAMOUR: And how did your friends and family react when you told them you were doing this movie?
Eloise: Everyone was super thrilled for me, my friends were funny because I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone at the beginning because they wanted to announce and control the way it came out in the press, I was very careful about that. I told my parents under total secrecy, and my friends didn’t know, so when it would announced in the press they were super super happy for me and also super mad I hadn’t told them. But everyone was very excited for me to be in a film that has such huge fanbase and huge anticipation and I think every actor dreams of being in a film that is so wildly anticipated.
GLAMOUR: And you weren’t worried about telling your parents you are going to being in a very sexualized film.
Eloise: No I wasn’t. There’s so much sex in our culture and everything else that I think there’s certainly more sexual and violent things I could be involved with, and so I think it’s art and it’s a hugely popular book and I don’t think they were worried for a second.
GLAMOUR: And my last question is, do you now get recognized in the street now you’ve been in quite such a massive film.
Eloise: It’s kind of a funny thing because Kate on the inside is very similar to me, but also I live in Los Angeles, I’m not in college, there’s a lot of stuff that’s different in that sense, that it takes people a little bit of time to realise, so they’ll be talking to me and all of a sudden I’ve been getting a lot of, “You look so familiar” and I know why that is but I don’t want to say it to the person, “Oo that’s probably because you saw 50 Shades Of Grey.” So I’m just like “oh really, cool”. But then there’s the random people who recognize me as well so it’s fun. It’s honestly just wonderful to be in a movie that people saw so much and I’m really excited for the DVD to come out so it means more people get to enjoy the movie.
Fifty Shades of Grey is out on DVD nationwide now.