Rose Byrne is up to no good again.
After driving Kristen Wiig further into cupcake-consuming meltdown mode during 2011’s Bridesmaids, the Australian actress goes full-on diva in Spy, which reunites her with director Paul Feig and co-star Melissa McCarthy. As McCarthy’s dead-serious, fashion-challenged Spy foe, Byrne — also known for roles in Neighbors, Damages and the X-Men movies — stars as the wickedly divine Raina Boyanov.
During our recent interview, Byrne talked about how her onscreen bouffant caused a hairy situation with the studio, the disparity between women and men in Hollywood films (“It’s discrimination”) and her caveat when it comes to playing gay.
— Chris Azzopardi
Dallas Voice: I know lots of queens who’d kill for your Raina hair in this movie. Who was your drag queen consultant? Rose Byrne: [Laughs] I’m very honored and flattered you say that. As long as I have their approval, I’m done! [The studio] didn’t actually want my hair like that. Paul and I really had to fight for it. We had a specific idea of where she was from and what she looked like — a lot of money, no taste and very Eastern European. Very Marie Antoinette. And it’s a spy film, so style is such an important element of it … even if it’s bad style!
I’m glad everyone could agree that bigger is better in this case. How did you convince the studio to see it your way? Once it was all together and we were on camera. It just all came together: the costume, the makeup, everything. And it just needed a little more. She’s quite still as a character, and I think [the hair] says a lot! It was the stronger choice! That’s how we convinced them.
What did it feel like on top of your head? It felt… good! I mean, it was heavy. It would move a lot, too. Oh my goodness. It was constantly shifting because it was so big, and if I was waiting around, it would start to, like, deteriorate. Sarah Love, the hair designer on the film, did a brilliant job, because it was a lot.