In celebration of this hilarious satire in which Matt Damon’s character Paul Safranek goes small to live large with his wife Audrey (played by Kirsten Wiig), we have a brilliant exclusive clip and interview with Kirsten herself to share with our readers.
We’ve also got an amazing giveaway, so check below for the details!
Matt Damon (The Martian, Jason Bourne) gets small, to live large in Academy Award® winning director Alexander Payne’s hilarious original comedy! In a film that delivers big comedy from a small Damon, sometimes all it takes is a change of perspective to better understand the world in the social satire that is Downsizing, available on Digital from March 28 and 4K Ultra HDTM, Blu-rayTM & DVD from April 11, 2018.
When scientists find a way to shrink humans to five inches tall to curb over population, Paul Safranek (Damon) and his wife Audrey (Kristen Wiig, Bridesmaids, Despicable Me 3) decide to ditch their stressed- out lives in order to get small and live in a luxurious downsized community.
Filled with life-changing adventures and endless possibilities, Leisureland offers more than riches, as Paul discovers a whole new world and realises that we are destined for something bigger. Oscar winner Christoph Waltz (The Legend of Tarzan, Spectre) stars alongside him as Paul’s tremendously entertaining neighbour Dusan Mirkovic, as well as Vietnamese refugee turned love interest Ngoc Lan Tran, played by Golden Globe Nominee Hong Chau (American Dad!, Big Little Lies).
Introducing a new world of possibilities through one quirky, micro-utopia that explores the revolutionary method of miniaturisation, Downsizing is available on Digital from March 28 and 4K Ultra HDTM, Blu-rayTM & DVD from April 11, 2018.
For your chance to win one of ten copies of “Downsizing” on DVD, simply enter your details below and let us know how you’d downsize your life?
Entries close Thursday April 19.
In the meantime, check out this EXCLUSIVE “Downsizing” material below!
Check out this exclusive clip:
Interview with Kristen Wiig below:
Q : What is “Downsizing” about?
Kristen : Um, well, it’s, uh, I guess on a sort of– in a greater sense it– it talks about where we are in the world and solutions to possibly, you know, keep the earth the way it is and prevent global warming and all of these things by having people shrink down to about that big. Um, and in the world of this movie that’s happened.
And we now have the choice of being able to– to shrink ourselves and live in this place called Leisure Land, which is basically a whole world created for these newly small people making less of an impact on the environment. And, um, a lot of people are doing it.
Q : Who is Audrey?
Kristen : Uh, my character is Audrey, and I feel like when you meet her she’s probably not at the top of her game. Um, she’s not too happy. She’s, um, she and Paul, played by Matt, um, are married and don’t really have a lot going for them right now. They’re not really living their dream at all. I wouldn’t say they’re super happy and looking for a change and something to sort of shake it up.
And “Downsizing” seems like the right answer, especially because, um, money there is– I think it’s like one dollar here is worth a thousand dollars in Leisure Land. So that’s a big temptation for them.
Q : What’s going on in the relationship?
Kristen : I feel like Audrey wants something from Paul that she knows she’ll never get. I think there’s a part of her that, uh, doesn’t want to be alone, um, and likes her life a little more with a partner. I do think she loves Paul. But I think that– I don’t think either one of them would describe each other as their soul mate by any means.
Q : Tell me about their classmates.
Kristen : I think a lot of their friends have started to do it and, um, Dave and Carol, um, in particular. And just seeing the benefits and how their quality of life has improved and the things that they’ve left behind in this regular world, um, it doesn’t seem to matter. They’re kind of living the life they’ve always wanted to live. I think they say like Dave’s playing drums. And, um, they have this beautiful house.
And it just seems like they’re happier, which is I think something that Paul and Audrey really want.
Q : How do they get led to check this out?
Kristen : I think in the beginning Paul is– is way more into the idea than– than Audrey is. And, um, ’cause she’s very close with her family and her friends. And there is that element of if you downsize, you know, you– you think of these things. Like, oh, I won’t be able to hug my father again. Or I won’t be able to sit with my girlfriends like I have for 20 years.
Um, but I think through seeing some of the people that have done it and then looking into Leisure Land and seeing how beautiful it is and the homes are huge. And there’s– you know, there’s pools. There’s sport centers. It just seems like a little utopia. I think she comes around, um, but Paul’s definitely into the idea way more than Audrey in the beginning.
Q : Are these things Audrey really wants?
Kristen : Yeah. [LAUGHS] Yeah, I think there’s definitely a materialistic side to Audrey. I– I feel like if she and Paul had more money and if Paul made more money there might be a sense of, uh, her being a little happier in the relationship. Um, I know she loves Paul. But I think she wants a certain kind of life that he’s not giving her.
And I think maybe she’s a little resentful towards that. And this is kind of a way to keep her marriage and have the life that she wants to live. But she has to give up all this other stuff.
Q : Where do they go to learn about downsizing?
Kristen : Uh, you mean when they go to Leisure Land? Oh, um, yeah, when we shot the scene where we go to Leisure Land it was, um, well, I guess to see what Leisure Land is like. It was really amazing. And I love that the set in showing all the different things that Leisure Land has to offer it was so crowded. Like there were so many people that were thinking about doing it, um, which makes it more appealing because you– you get the sense that like all these people are gonna start to do it.
And get in now while it’s probably cheaper and– and less crowded. Um, and we did this great scene. Niecy Nash came, um, uh, and was with us for a day. And she was so incredible. She sort of played the– the saleswoman for the whole thing. Just kind of explaining how our money would– would, you know, how much money we would have with the, um, I guess changing it into Leisure Land money, um, and just seeing everything that it has to offer.
And it’s very, very tempting to them. It looks like– it looks like a good idea all around.
Q : What happens when they decide to go through with it?
Kristen : Uh, well, when Paul wakes up he gets a phone call, um, from his wife. And on the other end of the line is me, Audrey, who is full sized and didn’t go through with it. And she’s crying and, uh, it’s a very tough thing. I think she really wanted to go through with it. And, you know, when you have the procedure done you– like the women are separate from the men. So who knows when she, you know, decided. She had already shaved her head, and one of her eyebrows was gone. Um, and she had to give him the news she didn’t do it.
Q : Why did she change her mind?
Kristen : I think Audrey probably never really wanted to do it. I think she wanted all the things that come with it. But I don’t think she wanted to leave ultimately her family and friends for Paul.
Q : How was it getting into the shaved look?
Kristen : Yeah, well, when I first read it I– I was kind of excited ’cause I thought, ooh, I have to shave my head for a movie. That’ll be kind of cool. Um, but it was a bald cap. I didn’t shave my head, um, which is really weird too when you have such a realistic bald cap. And one of my eyebrows was removed. And looking in the mirror was just so strange because it was like bald, like fully bald.
Um, yeah, and, uh, I just like how I was dressed in clothes that I– I think I like stole from the place, like someone else’s sweatshirt and the hospital gown. Um, and like she just- she just panicked at the last minute, and she wanted to get out of there.
Q : How long did the process take?
Kristen : I think– I think the process was about three hours. I think. Yeah.
Q : Have you ever shaved an eyebrow before?
Kristen : No, I’ve never shaved an eyebrow. [LAUGHS] That’s the most interesting answer you’re gonna get all day. But I might for the premiere.
Q : What drew you to this film?
Kristen : Well, it was such a– I mean it’s like a double whammy. It was Alexander who I’ve always wanted to work with. And Matt, who I’ve always wanted to work with. Um, we were in the Martian together, but we didn’t have any scenes together. Um, so I felt a little robbed on that one. Um, yeah, I mean the script I think is so funny and weird and uncomfortable and, um, sad. I just really, really loved it.
And I– just I love Alexander’s work. And to get to work with Matt was just amazing.
Q : What was your reaction to the script?
Kristen : I just thought it was such a great idea. Um, and the characters in it were so interesting because there’s probably a lot of emotional torment that goes along with having this like other world of downsized people. And I just love the way that– that they wrote it. And I thought it was really smart and really funny. And I just– I loved it.
Q : What does Matt bring to his role?
Kristen : It’s– you know, Paul’s character in the beginning is so sort of beaten down a little bit because of my character, um, and, uh, sad. And, um, he doesn’t really stand up for himself that much. He feels very much like he takes care of other people. And, um, and what Matt is bringing to it just through his looks and his wardrobe and the way he’s carrying himself– [STAMMERS] I feel so bad most of the time we’re doing scenes.
I’m like sorry. Um, no, I mean he’s just incredible. I mean he’s one of the– the great actors of our time. And I just think that to bring such sincerity to this weird, crazy, funny movie is like a real talent.
Q : What physicality is he bringing?
Kristen : Um, it’s hard to explain what he does physically. I mean he’s– it’s little things. It’s like looking down and feeling unsure. Um, you know, he’s wearing like a little fat suit thing underneath. And, um, uh, it’s kinda hard to describe, which is probably why it’s so good.
Q : How is this an Alexander Payne film?
Kristen : Oh, gosh, um, that’s a really good question. Um, I think what makes it an Alexander Payne film is that it’s not like all of the other Alexander Payne films. Because all of his movies are so different. I mean you know they’re directed by him and sometimes written or co-written by him.
Um, the characters are just– it sounds so like cliché to say like the characters are so specific. And everything about it is– has been thought about, the sets, the wardrobe, where people are in the background. Um, and it’s got this sort of underlying sadness underneath like really funny dialogue. And, yeah, I think the thing that he does is kind of– it’s hard to describe.
Q : There’s a sense of humanity.
Kristen : Can we use that? Meh, meh, meh, meh. I’ll mouth it.
Q : How does a grounded story take place in an absurdist world?
Kristen : Well, it is an absurdist world. But it’s also– you ask yourself like, well, what would you do? And could this happen? And it is rare that movies that are about something that are– it’s like, it’s so crazy. But it also could kind of happen someday I guess. I mean it would be really hard to shrink people. But– but you do think about it.
It’s making everyone think about it, like if they would do it. Um, and if you’re gonna have such a strange world it– it’s a nice sort of contradiction to have the story really be about the people and relationships, which is something we can all relate to.
Q : What is the power of satire?
Kristen : Oh my God, what a philosophical question. The power of satire? Um, I mean I think people like to laugh for different reasons. And I think, um, or different things make different people laugh, especially when you’re uncomfortable. Um, and I think people like to see things that they can relate to and something that may normally be like a sad, uncomfortable thing.
But when it’s– it’s made funny we kinda let ourselves laugh at it. And then we realize we can kind of like laugh at a lot of serious things in life I guess. Did that make any sense? Okay. As I was talking I was like I’m not really sure what I’m saying. But just get to the end. [LAUGHS]
Q : What is Alexander bringing to this film?
Kristen : Oh my gosh, I love watching Alexander work. He’s so– he’s such a considerate leader. Um, and he’s so detail oriented that you– it gives the actors this weird safety when you know everything around you has been thought of. And when he’s moved on from maybe like a scene you’re doing you do feel like you generally got it because he said it was okay to move on.
And usually, you know, you leave a set going like, oh, I hope I– I hope it was okay. And, um, you always second guess yourself and think of choices that you could’ve made later. But he’s so particular, and he has such a vision that you kind of know you’re riding along. And it’s– it’s– if it’s going well to him then it’s going well. And it makes you feel good.
Q : What about the production design?
Kristen : No, the production design is incredible. And, you know, a lot of this takes place in Omaha, which is where Alexander’s from. And it really is– he has that attention to detail where things aren’t too– it’s not too much. There’s not like big Nebraska posters in every scene. But you get the sense that you’re there. And, um, and especially in Leisure Land and all of that stuff. I mean I’ve only seen a little bit of it. And even going to the headquarters of it it’s just– it’s incredible.
Q : What was it like shooting in Omaha?
Kristen : Oh, God, I don’t know. I mean you do sort of feel like you’re shooting with the mayor of– of– I mean, you know, he’s just kind of like Mr. Omaha. Yeah, and it’s nice that he goes back there and makes stories about where he’s from. Um, I don’t know how to answer that. Yeah.
Q : What about people leaving their footprint on the environment?
Kristen : Oh, I am a crazy recycler, um, down to like if I get coffee the plastic top, the paper, the cup, wash it out. And, um, yeah, it’s frustrating when you see people– when people don’t make the effort to do those little things because they think they’re little things. Um, but I– I like to make sure there’s recycling wherever I go. I don’t know if that’s a big, um, you know, thing. But, yeah. Yeah.
Q : What do you hope audiences get from this?
Kristen : There’s a lot. I mean I– I do think there’s a lack of movies like this in the world. And I– I love that Paramount took a chance with something like this. As, uh, someone in the business I hope that, um, people won’t see movies like this as such a big risk. And we don’t have to keep telling the same stories and that we can do different things like this. ‘Cause I think people want to see it.
Um, and I think it will make people question how they live in the world and how they treat the– the environment and the planet and each other. Um, and also just, you know, seeing another one of Alexander’s great movies. And Matt, again, is so great. And everyone, like the cast that we’ve had insofar that I’ve seen has just been like– they’ve been amazing.
Q : What about the message?
Kristen : Yeah, well, it makes you ask like, you know, I really want to help. But what am I willing to give up? Because what would you want to give up? I mean if– if it makes such a difference, and you really believe in it but you have to give up maybe people in your family and your friends and your house and all of your belongings. Would you do that? Is that important to you?
Q : Why is now the right time for this film?
Kristen : Now is the right time for this film because now is when we’re making it. Um, yeah, it’s just– it’s the perfect time. I don’t know. I’m- I’m answering it in a very Zen way. But it’s the perfect time because it’s the time. And the time is now. It’s perfect. Mmm.