Carey Mulligan on Getting ‘Suffragette’ Right: ‘We Didn’t Want It to Feel Like a Costume Drama’ (Exclusive Video)

“Put my dirty, unwashed hair back and put some mud on my face, and that was it,” actress says of preparation for film

This story originally appeared in the Actors/Directors/Writers issue of TheWrap’s Oscar magazine.

The pressure was on for Carey Mulligan in “Suffragette,” which is the first film ever to tackle the real life women’s vote movement in Britain.

“It’s the first time in history anyone’s ever told this story,” she said. “We felt a massive responsibility to get it right and to do it justice and salute these women in the right way.”

“Suffragette” tackles the imprisonment, force feeding and other tactics used against women fighting to vote in the 1920s, but public shaming was perhaps most shocking of all.

Though the film is a period piece, following women in the 1920s, hair, makeup and styling on the actors were kept to a minimum, so as to not make it distracting for the gritty, realistic true life story.

“We always wanted it to feel real, we didn’t want it to feel like a costume drama,” she said. “With makeup and wigs and such, it can feel a little bit removed from costume drama … My makeup calls were 10 minutes long. Put my dirty, unwashed hair back and put some mud on my face, and that was it.”

Mulligan also believes the suffragette movement is still a relevant issue today.

“Luckily, we’ve come a long way in the Western world,” she said. “In Sudan, the legal marriage age is 10, and there’s no consensual age for sex. These issues happen all over the world. Sixty-two million girls don’t go to school, 22 percent of parliament is made up of women and the rest are men. The imbalance is so massive in so many parts of the world that the film is still so relevant. So many women are fighting the same struggles that we were 100 years ago.”

Click here to read more from the Actors/Directors/Writers issue of TheWrap Oscar Magazine.

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