Director Jay Roach’s 2019 film Bombshell was (mostly) based on true accounts of sexual harassment that women experienced at Fox News, with Charlize Theron playing Megyn Kelly, Nicole Kidman playing Gretchen Carlson, and Margot Robbie playing… a made-up person who doesn’t really exist. But, as it turns out, Robbie didn’t join the project so she could dramatize the real experiences of a real person anyway. Speaking at a BAFTA event this week celebrating her career (via Variety), Robbie revealed that she took the gig because she wanted to learn about sexual harassment—something she didn’t know anything about beforehand, apparently.
“I realized that I—as a person with an established position in the industry, financially set up and self-sufficient—I didn’t know the definition of sexual harassment, and that’s shocking,” she explained, adding that she was “horrified” by how little she knew about the subject and how predators in the workplace can get away with harassment because of the way it “flourishes in the grey area.”
Also at the event, Robbie said that I, Tonya was the first movie she was in where she felt like she had actually become a good actor (we’ll save you some Googling and just note that it came out after she made her debut as Harley Quinn in Suicide Squad), and after that she felt inspired to start actively reaching out to directors she wanted to work with. One of those directors was a chatty young man named Quentin Tarantino, who later cast Robbie as Sharon Tate in Once Upon A Time… In Hollywood.
And speaking of I, Tonya, Variety reminds us that Robbie admitted a few years ago that she didn’t realize Tonya Harding was a real person at first, so she learns a lot while making movies, apparently. (Robbie was born in 1990 and isn’t from America, so she gets a pass on not knowing who Tonya Harding was before the movie.)