Category: UNpregnant

Haley Lu Richardson: “I’ve retired from playing teenagers”

The 27-year-old star of Edge of Seventeen, Columbus and Unpregnant is growing up with indie Montana Story and a role in the next season of The White Lotus

In the last half decade, Haley Lu Richardson has amassed an impressive variety of roles, from slapstick comedies and indie dramas, united in their striking naturalism.

As the popular best friend to Hailee Steinfeld’s misanthrope in teen comedy Edge of Seventeen, a star-crossed lover with cystic fibrosis in Five Feet Apart and an architecture nerd who befriends a grieving older man in Kogonada’s critically acclaimed Columbus, the 27-year-old American actor’s warmth consistently elevates what could be flat or derivative characters into full-blooded people. She is remarkably good at the more casual, throwaway aspects of life that often translate poorly to screen – Googling Planned Parenthood in Unpregnant, shooting a glance in the memories of a techno-sapien robot in After Yang or, in the case of her new film Montana Story, calling an Uber to her father’s ranch in Big Sky country.

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Variety Streaming Room – Q&A

VARIETY – To tackle abortion through the lens of a road trip comedy required a sense of grace and wit from the cast and crew of “Unpregnant.” In finding this balance, director and co-writer Rachel Lee Goldenberg had a single guiding mission.

“My goal from the beginning, and still is, it’s just that I just want to normalize and de-stigmatize abortion,” Goldenberg told editor Jenelle Riley in the Variety Streaming Room presented by HBO Max. “I want people to be able to say the word, I want people to know that they can talk about it and that their friends can talk about it and that most Americans support abortion and that that fact is purposely hidden.”

“Unpregnant” sees estranged high school students Veronica and Bailey rekindle their friendship to drive from Missouri to New Mexico so Veronica can get an abortion at a clinic that provides the service without her parents’ mission.

“When we were doing the scene, actually driving into the clinic and all those extras were there protesting and everything, that felt very real and intense,” Haley Lu Richardson said, who plays Veronica. “That actually shocked me in my core.”

Not all moments in the movie are so heavy, particularly thanks to Barbie Ferreira’s Bailey, an emo zoomer distinguished by a shock of green hair. Her dry sense of humor invigorates “Unpregnant,” but its also a method of deflection so that she doesn’t have to deal with her feelings.

“I feel like if I get myself to a place where I’m ready to be emotional, for me, it takes time and intention. I can’t just turn it on,” Ferreira said. “I like to just watch like mindless reality TV, and try to just like go to sleep really early and wake up and have a fresh new day, because it’s hard to get out of that.”

The buddy comedy finds a sweet spot in unveiling absurdity of reality, such as when Veronica points out the backward logic in teens being able to “birth a human child,” but needing parental consent for an abortion.

“There’s so much inherent comedy and in life,” Goldenberg said. “The guiding principle when people in bad faith have said, ‘oh, this, this movie thinks abortion is funny.’ It’s like, we’re never making jokes about abortion. All the jokes are coming from why is it so hard to get this abortion? Like why is this journey so hard? And so that really frees us to let inherent humor.”

‘The First Time’ With Haley Lu Richardson

Actress talks Unpregnant, starring in a Lifetime movie, and sobbing to Viola Davis

In Unpregnant, Haley Lu Richardson stars as a pregnant teenager from Missouri who embarks on a road trip to the nearest abortion clinic in Albuquerque with the help of a former friend. As the film streams on HBO Max, Richardson chatted with Rolling Stone for The First Time.

Richardson kicks off things by remembering the first time she saw herself on TV. She was in eighth grade and appeared in a Sylvan Learning Center commercial in her home state of Arizona. “It was a very proud moment for me,” she says, noting that her entire family saw it and passed it around on email chains. “I think my role was a kid that was struggling with homework at the breakfast table with my parents, and you see me struggling. And then flash forward to me — I had to smile and nod to the instructor tutor lady like I was a changed woman or something.”

She explains how she got involved with Unpregnant. “I got sent the script and loved so many things about it,” she says, “but also recognized how ambitious and new of an endeavor it was to try to make a movie with this tone talking about the real important things we explore in the movie.”

Elsewhere in the clip, Richardson recalls starring in the Lifetime movie Escape from Polygamy, meeting Cole Sprouse on Five Feet Apart, and crying to a song on Nashville. She also cites the first time she met a personal idol: Viola Davis, following the actress’ 2017 Golden Globe win for Fences. “I can’t keep my cool around these types of people,” she says. “So I fangirl at every given moment…..I literally sobbed in front of her, which was very embarrassing.”


The Kelly Clarkson Show – Videos + Captures

Haley Lu was a guest on The Kelly Clarkson Show earlier today to promote Unpregnant. Watch the videos below

I have also added 229 high quality screencaptures to the gallery

Unpregnant (2020) – Screencaptures

2165 high quality screen captures from the movie UNPREGNANT have been added to the gallery

HBO Max Drive-In Premiere of “Unpregnant” – Photos

Hi! Haley Lu attended the HBO Max Drive-In Premiere of “Unpregnant” last night in Glendale, California. I have added 9 HQ pictures from the event to the gallery.

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