Zoë Kravitz Talks Casting, Catwoman, and “High Fidelity”
Zoë Kravitz’s name is everywhere right now. The actress is appearing in a whole host of new roles, from the Hulu remake of High Fidelity to the HBO smash hit Big Little Lies. It was only two years ago that we saw her as Leta Lestrange in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald, but Kravitz has tackled a wide range of projects in the meantime.
Right now, she’s in London filming Matt Reeves’s new take on Batman, which stars Robert Pattinson as the caped crusader. Though it may be odd for us to watch Leta and Cedric Diggory on opposite sides of the law, Kravitz says working with Pattinson has been a dream:
I’ve never worked with him before, but we’ve been together for the last few weeks; I had to camera test with him, and now we’ve been training together and rehearsing together, and he’s just a delightful person and such a wonderful, thoughtful actor. I think he’s perfect for the role, and it’s going to be such an adventure. I’m excited to have him as my partner in crime and to be there to support each other, because it’s intense. It’s going to be a long shoot, and there’s a lot of pressure, and I know he has my back and I have his.
The pressure is certainly on for both actors – Batman has one of the strongest fan bases of all time, so they have huge shoes to fill and a legion of people to please. Kravitz is excited to put her own spin on this classic character, but it will be a daunting task:
It was a little scary, but also, whenever I get nervous about something, I feel it pushes me to a better place anyway, so I welcome the nerves. If you start focusing too much on what people are going to think, you’re doing yourself a disservice; it’s almost like you’re putting your energy in the wrong place. Of course, I want to honor the fans and hope they like what I do with the role, but in order to do what I think I need to do with Catwoman, I have to go internal and forget about the rest of the world.
Kravitz is the third actress of color to play Catwoman, following in the footsteps of Halle Berry and Eartha Kitt. She’s frequently asked about how diverse casting affects her, especially now that she’s playing the written-as-white roles of Bonnie in Big Little Lies and Rob Gordon in the gender-flipped High Fidelity. She’s executive producing the latter, which gives her more control over how Rob’s status as a woman of color is portrayed:
It’s frustrating when people of color can only play a character that’s written as a minority. So it’s refreshing when it’s not about that. But it’s complicated, because you don’t want to ignore that fact. Part of our responsibility as storytellers is to tell the truth.
She’s had a taste of work behind the camera, and while Kravitz didn’t confirm plans to produce in the future, we’re hoping to see her creative touch on more of her projects:
This felt like a crash course in filmmaking and producing. I really did it; I put my name there and was very involved in writing, casting, editing, marketing, set design, everything. Making the show feel authentic was the most important thing to me, and that requires me to have my hands on everything, because it all contributes to the look and the feel and the authenticity of the show. This show may have given me a few grey hairs, but I think it was worth it.
Somehow, between all of this, she also manages to maintain her status as a fashion icon and brand ambassador for Yves Saint Laurent. She recently appeared in an ad for its Black Opium perfume, which might have something to do with why her costar Nicole Kidman confessed to Elle magazine that Kravitz “always smells so good!”
Zoë Kravitz is on the rise, and we can’t wait to see how high she soars. Check out her latest interview for more on all these projects, and be sure to catch High Fidelity, now streaming on Hulu.