- Film & TV
- 10 Jun 20
“Pete’s stand-up is quite dark as well, so I knew it was going to have a darker tone than Judd’s other movies.”
Twenty eight year old actress Bel Powley is rapidly making a name for herself on film and television.
After starring in The Diary Of A Teenager Girl, she has received rave reviews for her performances in Mary Shelley, White Boy Rick and the drama series The Morning Show, which stars Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon and Steve Carell.
In Judd Apatow’s new film, 'The King Of Staten Island', which is a fictionalised version of comedian Pete Davidson’s life if he never found comedy, Powley plays Kelsey, the love interest of Davidson’s character Scott.
A strong, warm young woman, Kelsey recognises Scott’s potential – but also recognises that he’s stuck, having never truly grappled with the death of his father and not taking care of his mental health.
Powley was attracted to the role because it offered her the chance to collaborate with good friend Davidson.
“My boyfriend made a movie with Pete two years ago when I was doing a play in New York,” Powley says. “We spent the summer hanging out and became good buddies. When Staten Island was casting, my agents called and said that Pete was making a movie with Judd. I went along to this improvised audition, which was terrifying because I’ve never done that before. I came out of the audition and said, ‘Oh, my God, that was so bad.’ Then, Pete texted me in capitals and told me I crushed it.”
Powley was intrigued by the film’s balance of comedy and drama—as well as the intersection between Davidson’s standup and Apatow’s sensibility.
“Pete’s stand-up is quite dark as well, so I knew it was going to have a darker tone than Judd’s other movies,” Powley says.
“I knew it was going to be hilarious, because Judd can make anything comic, and everyone in this is funny. But the basic themes of depression, drug use and grief are quite dark. Still, Judd has an amazing way of sprinkling those things throughout without it feeling like you’re being hit over the head by a hammer.”
For more from Powley, as well as Judd Apatow and The King Of Staten Island stars Marisa Tomei and Maude Apatow, pick up the latest issue of Hot Press!
The King Of Staten Island is available to rent at home from June 12.
Watch the trailer for the comedy-drama below: