The Knockturnal was on the red carpet for the 26th Annual Gotham Independent Film Awards on Monday, November 28 at Cipriani Wall Street.
The nominees for best actress were Kate Beckinsale in Love & Friendship (Amazon Studios), Annette Bening in 20th Century Women (A24), Isabelle Huppert in Elle (Sony Pictures Classics), Ruth Negga in Loving (Focus Features) and Natalie Portman in Jackie (Fox Searchlight Pictures). The Best Actress jury included Rene Bastian, Neve Campbell, Katherine Dieckmann, Tim Orr, and Fisher Stevens. The award was presented by presented by Neve Campbell and David Oyelowo.Isabelle Huppert snagged the coveted award in one of the more surprising moments of the evening. We spoke with her at the event.
Read what she had to say below:
How are you? Congratulations! What does this honor mean to you?
Isabelle Huppert: Oh it means a lot, it means a lot. I’m really thrilled being here. I heard that very rarely foreign speaking actresses are being here.
America is embracing you.
Isabelle Huppert: Thank you. I’m really thrilled. It’s a great pleasure, a great honor.
You’ve never been to the Gothams before.
Isabelle Huppert: No.
This movie struck a chord with people. Did it surprise you how Americans had taken to this film?
Isabelle Huppert: No, it doesn’t surprise me. I think people, most of the time, take the movie as it should be taken … I mean, it’s disturbing but it’s also … There’s a great integrity to the film … but that’s what you expect from someone like Paul Verhoeven. You don’t expect from him to take us for a nice ride, you just expect to go more on a roller-coasters. On that, he certainly does not deceive his audience but again, I think that the film has so much depth, so much intelligence, so much mystery and it’s very funny at the same time. I think most of the time, that’s the way people receive the film, in all its complexity.
Was there something you took away from this that’s unique?
Isabelle Huppert: Well I think I learned about really being happy. It makes me happy to make all these films and it’s a lot to be happy.
How did you go about building the character? You had the book as the source material. You had the script.
Isabelle Huppert: Yes of course, I had read the book before. I didn’t really think a lot before … doing it. This is the way usually I work. I think but I don’t really know exactly what I’m going to be doing and especially more so in this case. I think that every day I was discovering the situations and I was very close to the character in that sense. I don’t think she was expecting what she was going to do when she did it, you know. She was like pushed by something or threatened by something, but it was not very a conscious decision, and that was my state of mind when I did it.
You do a lot of physical things in this film.
Isabelle Huppert: Yes of course.
And also emotional work.
Isabelle Huppert: Yes, but I think I called it a non-emotional character. But I think that’s the reason why she’s in a way, touching. This is because she is not emotional so she doesn’t … she has no reflection upon herself. She has no compassion for herself, she is a survivor.
Did you physically get harmed in any way at all?
Isabelle Huppert: No, I’m very strong.
The evening was presented by Fiji Water, Deep Euphoria Calvin Klein and Landmark Vineyards.