Jennifer Holland on Harcourt, James Gunn’s Relationship – The Hollywood Reporter

When Jennifer Holland Filmed on James Gunn’s Suicide Squad in early 2020, she brought black team member Emilia Harcourt after her.

“I don’t think I’ll ever play that character again,” Holland said The Hollywood Reporter. “I just thought I had to play this interesting part in his big movie and have fun with him for a few weeks.”

So it’s a bit bizarre 11 months after Holland found out he was playing Harcourt again, this time for a post-credit card that led directly to People of Peace, the new HBO Max show starring John Cena. That post-credits scene, shot January 2021 on the set of Vancouver People of Peace, is the opening pitch of the team’s six months of shooting. The series, which premieres January 13, centers around Cena’s Christopher “Peacemaker” Smith, with Holland’s Harcourt playing an integral role as one of his handlers on a follow-up mission. by order of Amanda Waller (Viola Davis).

Gunn, who has been Holland’s partner since 2015, wrote the eight-episode series out of boredom during the pandemic, not knowing if it would make it. Along the way, he tells Holland that Harcourt will be back.

Holland said: “I have no hope. Then, WarnerMedia-owned HBO Max lit up the show. “Suddenly we moved to Vancouver and he was getting ready for a show – it was a whirlwind.”

She found herself working closely with Cena, admired by his improvisational skills. In turn, he was impressed by the Netherlands.

“Her ability to make Jenn the character was unbelievably impressive and ultimately really rewarded me with examples of dedication to materialism and performance,” said Cena. “She understands her personality very well and really fights to make sure those traits stay intact.”

The first episode included a fight scene that saw Harcourt possess an assailant in a bar. Cena’s peacemaker is instantly knocked down, but Harcourt feels the opposite, especially since he killed her colleague Rick Flag (Joel Kinnaman) in Suicide Squad.

Holland said: “She is not an angel. “It’s not like she hasn’t killed anyone. But you don’t kill your teammates. So she started to completely disrespect this guy. She couldn’t believe that Waller had brought her with him on this team. “

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Jennifer Holland in People of Peace
Courtesy of HBO Max

Raised outside of Chicago and other parts of the country, Holland was a good student, serious about gymnastics and imagining a future as an architect. After discovering the drama while in high school, Holland convinced her mother, a nurse, to let her study online. They piled their belongings into the Dodge Stealth and moved to Los Angeles shortly after Holland turned 17.order birthday. She worked odd jobs as a hostess at restaurants like Hooters and Outback Steakhouse while taking acting classes — sometimes up to five hours a week. In the end, she landed on the procedure (Miami, The bones) and a direct to DVD American Cakes spinoff. Some projects are good, some are not, but she is a pleasure to work with.

“Every role that appeared before my eyes, ‘Oh! I was cast in this terrible movie! ‘” Holland recalls with a laugh. “I don’t know the difference between quality. I have no clue. I was so excited to be on set. “

Gunn came to Holland’s life in July 2015. Friend of director Michael Rosenbaum, the actor is known for playing Lex Luthor in Smallville, was dating one of Holland’s friends at the time. Rosenbaum suggested setting them up after Gunn saw a photo of Holland and asked who she was. Rosenbaum’s then-girlfriend pitched the idea to Holland, who had never heard of Gunn, even though he was already an A-list filmmaker with Guardians of the Galaxy last summer.

“She describes James as a producer and director. I guess the fact that she puts the producer first or something, it gives me weird vibes,” Holland said with a laugh.

That initial hesitation changed when she searched for interviews with the likable filmmaker online. “He seemed incredibly charming in interviews,” she recalls.

They were semi-discreetly dating and clicking.

Holland said: “I just told him the story of my whole life. “We spent seven hours together and that was it. That’s how it started. ”

When she built a partnership with Gunn, he started acting Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in Atlanta in 2016, while she landed a role in CMT’s ’50s musical film Sun Records as Becky Phillips, wife of music producer Sam Phillips. She’s filming in Nashville, and is going to Atlanta for the weekend.

Although the series only lasted eight episodes, it delivered a few full moments for the cast. Holland and her on-screen husband, Chad Michael Murray, shared a manager when she first arrived in Los Angeles, while Kevin Fonteyne, who plays Johnny Cash, also works as a physical trainer. and gave the Netherlands a fighting shape for People of Peace.

Although Sun Records Short-lived, Holland’s most high-profile role to date is only a few years away.

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People of Peace Jennifer Holland star
Polite Jonny Marlow

Gunn is known for writing seasons that involve specific actors, but even those closest to him say they were unaware of Gunn’s intentions until he gave the role to him. surname. That’s more or less true for Holland, although she’s been tight-lipped from many of the other actors in Gunn’s life.

“He’s really sensitive about not telling anyone until he knows it 100%,” Holland said. “Until he’s 100% locked in a script and he knows for sure nothing will change, any character could be written down at any time.”

When Gunn was penning Suicide Squad, he was thinking of a Squad com member going to the Netherlands. As the role grew larger, he named her Emilia Harcourt, a name DC readers will recognize. After wrapping The suicide case Team, Gunn realized that there was still ore for Harcourt to work on People of Peace.

“I had absolutely no idea how important she would be to the story,” says Holland of Gunn’s People of Peace writing process. “He would come down from his office and he would come up with ideas for me while he was writing. I’m starting to get a little tease of what the character will be like. ”

As People of Peace underway, Holland’s pre-acting training as a gymnast came in handy for a famous dance scene filmed in the prologue. For comedian Steve Agee, who plays technician John Economos, having Holland around proved a comfort.

“We had to have some rehearsals for it. They divided us into groups of three; so it was me, Chukwudi and Jenn,” Agee recalls. “15 minutes after the first rehearsal Jenn was so good, she could have shot it right there, but every time we show up in a new rehearsal, it’s like Chuk and I are trying out dance moves. this for the first time. It was Jenn the whole shoot, always ready to go and always nailing everything she had to do. ”

Holland’s journey to Harcourt began many years ago during a car trip to LA with her mother. And it may not be the end, so People of Peace back for the second season.

“I feel so grateful for the whole thing,” Holland said. The character is awesome. I love her so much. ”

A previous version of this article misrepresented the location People of Peace filmed.

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