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Florence Pugh 'abused herself' getting into character for disturbing Midsommar role

Florence Pugh 'abused herself' getting into character for disturbing Midsommar role

And she felt serious guilt about leaving her character behind

Florence Pugh has revealed that she let her mind go to really dark places to get into character for the A24 horror film Midsommar.

The cult film was a break-out hit for Pugh, who starred as Dani Ardor, a vulnerable college student who travels to Sweden with her boyfriend and his friends to study a midsummer festival - but the heavenly retreat quickly reveals itself to be a bizarre and violent cult.

To get into the role of the traumatised Dani, Pugh had to put some pretty grim thoughts in her head.

"I was so wrapped up in her,” she said in the latest episode of the Off Menu podcast.

"I’d never played someone that was in that much pain before and I would put myself in really s**t situations that maybe other actors don’t need to do but I would just be imagining the worst things.

"Because each day the content would be getting more weird and harder to do, I was putting things in my head that were getting worse and more bleak.

"I think by the end I definitely abused my own self in order to get that performance."

After months of abusing her own brain like that, you would imagine that Pugh was pretty eager to say goodbye to Dani when production finished - but it wasn't that easy.

Florence Pugh had to go to some dark places in her mind to get into character.
A24

Pugh told hosts James Acaster and Ed Gamble about the day that she left Midsommar to get started on Greta Gerwig's Little Women.

The actor explained that before she could get cracking on the role of Amy March (can you imagine two characters more different?), she had to say a rather emotional goodbye to Dani.

"I remember looking [out the plane window] and feeling immense guilt because I felt like I’d left her in that field in that state," Pugh explained.

"Obviously, that’s probably a psychological thing where I felt immense guilt of what I’d put myself through but I definitely felt like I’d left her there in that field to be abused… almost like I’d created this person and then I just left her there to go and do another movie."

Pugh said she felt 'immense guilt' leaving Dani behind.
A24

Pugh also touched on what she believes happens to Dani at the end of the film, after she is crowned May Queen and sees her boyfriend Christian offered as a sacrifice.

"I always thought that she survived," she mused.

"I don't think she's probably ever going to come back, because to come back from a psychotic break, you have to have deep, deep treatment and work, that obviously those people don't [offer her].

"But I do think that they care for her and I don't think she's - in that weird, twisted, horrible way - in a place where people actually want her to be there. I do think that she'll be getting respect and love in a weird way."

All's well that end's well... right?

Featured Image Credit: A24

Topics: Florence Pugh, TV and Film, Celebrity