Magazine article Dance Magazine

Isabella Boylston: The ABT Star Dishes on Being Jennifer Lawrence's Dance Double

Magazine article Dance Magazine

Isabella Boylston: The ABT Star Dishes on Being Jennifer Lawrence's Dance Double

Article excerpt

Big Hollywood movies featuring dance are few and far between, so curiosity about the thriller Red Sparrow, opening this month and starring Jennifer Lawrence as a Russian ballerina-turned-spy, is understandably at a high pitch. The production, which also stars Jeremy Irons, includes not one but four familiar dance names: Sergei Polunin, the enfant terrible of the ballet world, plays Lawrence's ballet partner; Justin Peck choreographed all the dance sequences; Kurt Froman, former New York City Ballet dancer, trained Lawrence; and American Ballet Theatre's Isabella Boylston performs as Lawrence's dance double.

How'd you get involved in Red Sparrow?

Justin Peck, who choreographed the movie, reached out to me. I've never done anything like that. And any chance to work with Justin ...

Where did you work out the choreography?

We started in the fall of 2016 in New York. We would send the videos to Sergei Polunin so he could learn the choreography on his own. Meanwhile, Kurt Froman was working with Jennifer Lawrence in L.A., teaching her some ballet basics.

When did you do the filming?

We shot in Budapest in January of 2017. We had a couple of weeks of rehearsal, just me and Sergei with Justin. Francis Lawrence, the director, would film it on his iPhone to figure out what he wanted to do with the camerawork. He really wanted to make the dance sequences authentic. He would ask me to show how I used the rosin box and what I would do in the wings before going out. Just to make it true.

Was Jennifer Lawrence intimidated to be dancing next to a real ballerina? …

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