Ruth Wilson’s Farming Experience in ‘Dark River’ | BLOUIN ARTINFO

Ruth Wilson’s Farming Experience in ‘Dark River’

Ruth Wilson’s Farming Experience in ‘Dark River’
Ruth Wilson’s breakthrough role as Jane Eyre came nine months after leaving drama school.
(Photograph: BBC)

Ruth Wilson is featured in the bleak farming environment where she will be seen dealing with her family farm in the upcoming movie “Dark River.”

The film paints a bleak picture of a family centered on their family farm at loggerheads. The actor Ruth Wilson talks about her experience filming the movie and the realities of farm life.

Her introduction to this dark fiction of farms can be characterized by one of her bold scenes in the film in which Wilson nonchalantly skins a rabbit in “Dark River.”

Preparing for the scene, she had been doing her research and had already watched a YouTube video that instructs how to do this task with utmost ease and pace. Bluntly speaking, it is easily performed, once one has dealt with the legs and peeled the skin off of the dead animal like a banana. She also had some advice from a farmer by the name Hazel and from a specialist in the job whom one could address as the on-set butchery adviser. And after all the advices and demonstration, a little more about Brexit helped go through the ordeal. She shared that “Basically, I took Brexit out on the rabbit.” She had a comic grimace sharing, “I imagined it was Nigel Farage or Boris Johnson, and that… well, it kind of kept me focused.”

It wasn’t all about the rabbit-skinning scene that gave her a challenging farming experience in “Dark River,” in the film where she plays Alice. Her character is a sheep shearer who returns to her run-down Yorkshire farm, the place where she grew up, after the death of her widowed father. “Clio [Barnard, the director] demands truth from her actors, and I knew I wouldn’t be able to fake it: I didn’t have any experience of the world I was stepping into. So once I was signed up, I spent three weeks staying with Malcolm and Hazel; Clio found them when she was first looking for places to shoot. They are the last generation of tenants in their family, and their farm is all they have known, so they match the situation in the film.” And this is the source of Wilson’s farm education as she puts it, “They were lovely,” adding, “But something gruesome and horrific happens every day on a farm. A sheep will break its leg, or you’ll have to lance a swelling on its neck that’s full of pus. It was disgusting, the stuff I saw; all that life and death and brutality.”

Her farming experience will take the darkest turn in the upcoming film “Dark River” opening on February 23, as reported by The Guardian.