It has been a few months since Olivia Wilde and her movie Don’t Worry Darling created a buzz on social media. Known for her television roles in The O.C. and House, she directed her first film Booksmart in 2019.
Olivia Wilde has crafted her own style in filmmaking, but before pivoting in a different direction, her first movie was a teen comedy that captures the essence of a coming-of-age tale. While Booksmart presented many aspects of life that most directors do not tackle, like the complexities of female friendships, Don’t Worry Darling is an ambitious leap that boldly faced and questioned the system that oppresses women.
After the controversy of the movie’s cast which resulted in Wilde firing Shia LaBeouf due to behavior that made Florence Pugh feel uncomfortable on set, the director faced another issue concerning her relationship with Harry Styles, the pop singer who replaced LaBeouf.
The Affair Affected Filming & Made Pugh Florence Feel Uncomfortable On Set
A rumor emerged on social media about Wilde neglecting her duties and alienating Pugh, and that she devoted more attention to Styles. It was also rumored that Pugh or the cinematographer had to take over directing at some point.
A source from Page Six said that Pugh seeing Wilde and Styles being head over heels with each other on set vexed the actress. There was a lack of professionalism, and Wilde kept disappearing in between takes. “Pugh, in particular, was angered by the absences, according to these sources, and one source personally witnessed a tense conversation about this issue between the two,” according to Puck News.
Wilde thought this internalized misogyny is ironic, and it’s quite rare for people to expect the best from women who are in power. In her interview with Vanity Fair, she said:
“It is ironic that now, with my second film—which is again about the incredible power of women, what we’re capable of when we unite, and how easy it is to strip a woman of power by using other women to judge and shame them.”
If Olivia Wilde Was A Man, Things Will Turn Out Differently
There are absolutely more rumors and scandals that happened behind closed doors, and no one can imagine the amount of distress all of these brought Wilde, yet she kept on showing up every single day. Imagine if she was a male director, will she get the same nasty comments?
Think about the extramarital affair between director Roberto Rossellini and Ingrid Bergman that became one of the biggest controversies during the 1950s. Both of them faced the consequences, but Bergman’s career suffered the most. Think about Woody Allen’s affair with his stepdaughter. Is engaging in an incestuous relationship more acceptable than having a partner with a decade-age gap?
Olivia Wilde is trying to carve her own path in Hollywood and exploring the opportunities it presents to her as a female director. It is wildly silly how the public assumes they have some say over her private life. It is a recurring theme that keeps on happening, and this will keep on catching up with us for the next hundred years unless we break the chain.