Since giving birth to her daughter in 2012, Sienna Miller hadn’t starred in a leading movie role and “was looking for something that was truthful and authentic and had a journey,” the actress tells EW. The role that caught her eye would turn into a career-high performance.
In the first American Woman trailer, we see snapshots of her impressive work in Jake Scott’s new film.
Screenwriter Brad Ingelsby (Out of the Furnace, Run All Night) penned the story about Debbie Callahan (Miller), a woman living in rural Pennsylvania with her young daughter, Bridget (Sky Ferreira), who herself is raising a child. One morning, Debbie wakes to the jarring sounds of her grandkid’s cries and the realization that Bridget didn’t come the night before. Her daughter has vanished, and the absence forces Debbie to trudge through this tragedy and raise her grandson, Jesse, in the years that follow, with support from her sister, Katherine (Christina Hendricks).
It’s “the story of realizing yourself in the midst of tragedy and real hardship, and the stoicism of overcoming those things,” Miller says. “I think I’m really drawn to courage, and she felt courageous.”
As a young actress, Miller chose her projects based on a desire to work and a want of “fun” roles. Now, in her 30s, she says “time is more precious.”
Unlike other theatrical representations of women, the kind who are often left “heartbroken or unable to get out of bed” in the face of tragedy, Miller says Debbie felt more “flawed” and “fully realized.”
“I think humans are incredibly resilient, and I think given challenges, inevitably we can rise above them,” she says. “To explore that, especially as women, it felt really pertinent and it felt really truthful. What [Debbie] goes through is real unimaginable suffering, and she manages and she copes. I see that in women everywhere, women who are dealing with incredible hardship and just carry on. It’s the strength and the resilience of the human spirit.”
Aaron Paul, Will Sasso, Amy Madigan, Alex Neustaedter, and Aidan Fiske also star in American Woman, which opens June 14. Watch the new trailer above.
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