Kate Beckinsale talks Prisoner’s Daughter

L-R: Kate Beckinsale, Christopher Convery, and Brian Cox in Prisoner's Daughter. Courtesy of Prisoner's Daughter LLC.

During a roundtable interview in Toronto for Prisoner’s Daughter, Kate Beckinsale discussed the film and working with an injury.

Beckinsale stars in the film alongside Brian Cox. The actress plays the estranged daughter of an aging prisoner dying of cancer. She’s reluctant to let him move in with her family but she’s tight on cash and he can provide money. The actress was injured four days into production. Shockingly, this is her first injury while shooting a film. It happened while she was putting on a pair of leggings in her hotel room.

I was able to get a pair of questions during the roundtable but there were three other journalists in the session, which lasted around 19 minutes or so.

What was it about the screenplay that drew you to the role?

Kate Beckinsale: I think the fact that there was so much going on for all of the characters, but just kind of emotionally, you meet my character in the center of everything falling apart. I think that I’m very interested in families and fractures in families and how that’s navigated. I think in the beginning of the movie, my character isn’t thinking of her dad, doesn’t think she’ll ever speak to him again, and wouldn’t actually were it not for a confluence of things that happened that make her very vulnerable and needing. I think getting a second chance at something that you think is irretrievable is a really interesting human thing.

Can you talk about being directed by Catherine Hardwicke?

Kate Beckinsale: Yeah, Catherine is—have you met Catherine?

Not yet.

Kate Beckinsale: The child in Catherine is really present, which is so fantastic when someone really knows their shit and knows what they’re doing, but also has this playful—she makes this very uninhibited atmosphere, which is what you want for actors, and especially when there’s a kid involved and all of that. She has a light touch.

We had a lot of challenges on the film. The film was a very small budget. We’re filming in extraordinary heat, and there’s not very air-conditioned house with a kid and various other complications. I got injured on the fourth day of filming and badly though. I was in hospital so they had to stop but they couldn’t film with me for three days. They shot everything that I wasn’t in. I was still in a terrible state so they had to arrange that I could shoot the movie as an inpatient of the hospital for the whole time. It was this bizarre situation where you’ve got one of the actors who’s kind of going home to a hospital every night and we’re covering up cannula bruises and G-d knows what. I couldn’t walk properly so we had to modify scenes because I’d had this—when you fuck your back up like I did, you get this thing called a foot drop, but you literally can’t walk.

I herniated a disc in my back, about eight millimeters, which is like a massive herniation. It just goes all the way down your leg and then paralyzes your foot. It was so painful. I’d met the producers maybe four days and they’d come and visit me in the hospital. I don’t drink so when you start getting pain meds and IV, I become a complete lunatic. Thank G-d that we’re all still friends. I thought the hospital was stealing my ovary. I went absolutely berserk. So yeah, it was quite a start to the movie so we all bonded quite hard.

Prisoner’s Daughter held its world premiere during the 2022 Toronto International Film Festival in the Gala program. It is currently seeking acquisition.

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Danielle Solzman

Danielle Solzman is native of Louisville, KY, and holds a BA in Public Relations from Northern Kentucky University and a MA in Media Communications from Webster University. She roots for her beloved Kentucky Wildcats, St. Louis Cardinals, Indianapolis Colts, and Boston Celtics. Living less than a mile away from Wrigley Field in Chicago, she is an active reader (sports/entertainment/history/biographies/select fiction) and involved with the Chicago improv scene. She also sees many movies and reviews them. She has previously written for Redbird Rants, Wildcat Blue Nation, and Hidden Remote/Flicksided. From April 2016 through May 2017, her film reviews can be found on Creators.