Based on the best-selling novel by author Alice Sebold, the movie The Lovely Bones deals with a family’s grief following the brutal death of a young girl. Both parents off-screen as well as on, the film’s stars Mark Wahlberg and Rachel Weisz reveal to Movies Online that they approached the very difficult subject matter in different ways.
“Because of the way I approach work, I wasn’t all that thrilled about the subject matter because I have a beautiful little girl [Ella Rae, 6] and two beautiful boys [Michael, 3, and Brendan, 1],” says Mark, who is awaiting the arrival of baby #4 with his wife Rhea Durham. “I don’t have the God-given talent that Rachel has, to just snap into it and have these floods of emotion coming out of it and then turn it all off. I basically had to live in that head space for the entire time. I just thought it would be a beautiful movie, and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to play [this character].”
Rachel, who is mom to 3-year-old son Henry, says she was better able to separate the film’s often dark subject matter from her own reality.
“I’ve learned to come out of it. I’m a mother in real life, so I can’t go home to my kid in a state of despair and tears,” she explains. “You have to learn to juggle that. Bad things happen in stories…. There are also very beautiful, uplifting things about this film. I didn’t have any hesitation or ramifications. I guess the uplifting theme of the film is that life is a treasure, precious and a miracle. I just wanted to go and hug my son tighter. It’s hard to remember that life is a miracle. You can’t forget that.”
Mark, however, admits that he took his work home with him on more than one occasion.
“I’m still learning to juggle,” the Boston-born dad says. “I would go home and just grab my daughter and hold her, and I would start crying. And, she’d be like, ‘Daddy, what’s wrong?’ She just wanted to play.”
The Lovely Bones will be in theaters in January.