There seems to be a suspicious number of pro-Olivia Wilde commenters in recent weeks, so let me make my position clear: in this situation, I’m Team Miss Flo. I genuinely believe that a lot of sh-t went down during the Don’t Worry Darling production, so much so that Florence Pugh was already reticent about doing much of any promo for the film. The coup de grâce on Miss Flo’s promotional obligations came during the absolute fiasco of Olivia Wilde’s Variety cover story, in which she lied about firing Shia LaBeouf to “protect” Pugh. Only, as we learned a few days later, Shia had left the film voluntarily and he had receipts (in the form of a video memo) that Olivia was begging him to come back to the production even after something went down between Shia and “Miss Flo.” Pugh has every right to disengage from Wilde’s obvious toxicity. It’s clear that Miss Flo’s costars have her back as well, and the studio is prepared to sign off on Miss Flo’s absence from most of the promotion. This is not a story about Pugh being unprofessional, it’s a story about Pugh wanting no part of Wilde’s bullsh-t and the studio saying “okay.” Speaking of, Miss Flo will miss the New York premiere. So will Chris Pine.
Following the drama-plagued launch of Olivia Wilde’s Don’t Worry Darling at the Venice Film Festival, Warner Bros. is scrambling to avoid any additional seeming collisions between director Wilde and her star, Florence Pugh. There are still 16 days to go before the film’s opening on Sept. 23, a lifetime for a campaign that has sparked a media feeding frenzy with everything from Harry Styles’ (alleged) spittle to Pugh’s eye contact, or lack thereof, being dissected.
But the studio won’t have to endure another tense and heavily scrutinized press event in the coming weeks. That’s because there’s only one on the calendar — the film’s New York red carpet premiere on Sept. 19 — and Pugh will not attend, according to two insiders.
(After this story’s publication, Warner Bros. confirmed in a press release that neither Pugh nor co-star Chris Pine would participate in the New York Event — an IMAX Live screening and Q&A that will stream to more than 100 IMAX theaters — with the film’s cast.)
The official reason cited for Pugh’s absence is that the actress is busy filming Dune: Part Two in Budapest and director Denis Villeneuve cannot cut her loose for a press event for another film. (She already left the Dune set once to attend Don’t Worry Darling’s world premiere in Venice, but skipped the press conference.)
“From what I understand, there is friction, but I don’t know why,” one source tells Rolling Stone on the issue. “It’s pretty clear she’s choosing not to be a part of the PR. It’s clearly not beneficial to Olivia to not have her be a part of the PR. It has to be a Florence decision.”
Yeah, that’s something else to consider: “It’s clearly not beneficial to Olivia to not have her be a part of the PR.” The last thing the studio needs is to somehow force Pugh to take part in a Q&A session and for all hell to break loose when Miss Flo starts spilling tea in front of an audience. That too is part of everyone’s calculations.
Meanwhile, Miss Flo finally did her first-ever Instagram posts about DWD, where she simply thanked the crew and gave a special shoutout to Chris Pine (who is so obviously Team Flo, it’s hysterical). Not only that but now Florence’s glam squad has “Miss Flo” t-shirts, which they wear when they’re fixing her up.
— milk emoji (@milkylewinsky) September 7, 2022
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red, Backgrid.