Television is a collaborative process, but “Guerrilla” star Freida Pinto knows one man behind the scenes deserves a lion’s share of the credit for the final product.
“John Ridley deserves an Emmy for everything,” Pinto enthused about the “Guerrilla” creator, writer and director. “Whatever he touches is gold. More than just the award, it’s the sense of – he’s worked really hard. If you go back and read the John Ridley story, it’s not like he came from nowhere and did ’12 Years a Slave’ and then won an Oscar for it.”
Ridley has made a name for himself in recent years with the aforementioned Oscar winner, with the Showtime miniseries “Guerrilla,” starring Pinto and Babou Ceesay as a young couple who become embroiled in the British black power movement of the 1970s, and with ABC’s “American Crime,” which focuses on a different politically charged social issue each season.
“The man’s been working really hard his entire life,” Pinto said. “He’s shining now, this is his moment.”
Pinto didn’t have an easy time acting in a miniseries that touched upon sensitive and turbulent racial issues, but the toughest thing she had to do for Ridley’s latest was quite surprising.
“All the tough things were so important that I did not really consider them to be tough,” she said. “I think the three am calls, wrapping up at three am was particularly tough. It wasn’t so much about my character, because all the things that were tough about her, I really enjoyed, but at three am I want to be in bed.”
The project also afforded the actress the luxury of rediscovering a city she sometimes calls home.
“I lived in London for two years right after ‘Slumdog [Millionaire],'” she said. “The most fun thing I got to do on this project, aside from learning about this time in British history and getting to meet real life guerillas from the 1970s… I think I really got to rediscover London. Because we were shooting all over, mostly East London but also in the countryside, the outskirts, I really got to fall in love with London all over again.”