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SXSW Q&A: Haley Bennett stars in crime drama 'Things People Do'

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Haley Bennett stars alongside Wes Bentley in director Saar Kleins first feature "Things People Do" which premieres at SXSW.

Bennett recently answered a few questions about her role in the film.

What attracted you most to this character?

I interpreted Ruby as the face of humanity in an otherwise cold world. A world where even Wall Street brokers, or college graduates are becoming escorts and selling their body to survive! In a life of closing doors, she recognizes this man and doesn't judge him. They mirror each other. She is the first person in his story that shows him an act of kindness. She relates, she is non judgmental, and she is doing her best. She isn't asking for any hand outs.

Tell us about working with director Saar Klein. What was the process like? Were there any challenging moments on set?

It was a total collaboration, it's wonderful when a director knows what they need. Saar knew exactly what he wanted. These characters are the face of the reality, how the economy has affected regular people. I felt very safe to get vulnerable, even when Ruby is degraded by her jerk boss. These are the things people do to survive. . It's relevant to what is going on in our country, Saar very effectively and beautifully illustrated that.

Tell us about working with Wes Bentley. What was he like?

He accurately portrayed the desperation of a man in his situation, I truly felt sympathetic to his character. Wes is so genuine, and a really nice guy...he inherently has this quality that makes you want to save him. He is a great underdog. You want him to win.

You recently worked on the new Terrence Malick film. What can you tell us about your role in that film?

It was such an honor to work with Terrence. He has been a great mentor to me. I am so excited that I wish I could scream off the rooftops but I must respect his process and my lips are sealed! ;)

What was it like working with Terrence Malick?

He allows so much freedom, I know this sounds cliche, but he is the embodiment of the word artist. I believe his work speaks for itself.

Do you have any other new projects coming up that you can mention?

I was fortunate to have another one of my dreams realized when I had the opportunity to work with the visionary director Antoione Fuqua and Denzel washington. It was a master class in acting for me.

It's a completely different character. She is a strong yet vulnerable Russian woman forced into prostitution, with her friend Terri (played by Chloe grace Moretz) and Mr Washinton becomes their hero. Learning the dialect was one of my favorite experiences, and I think the result will be a surprise for audiences.

After SXSW, I get to turn back the clock and step into the 1950's with film maker Warren Beatty and an incredible cast.

Again, I wish I could reveal more details but all I can say is I think this will be his greatest masterpiece. I feel like the luckiest girl in the world because my follow up to that will be a film directed by Gabeielle Mucciono starring Russell Crowe, a poignant family drama titled Fathers and Daughters, that I am deeply honored to be a part of.

So far 2014 is turning out pretty well, I am enjoying playing a myriad of supporting roles, with great stories, incredible directors, and surrounded by exceptional actors that inspire me to the core.

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