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HomeVideoExplaining the Don't Worry Darling Drama to Your Parents

Explaining the Don’t Worry Darling Drama to Your Parents

The Don’t Worry Darling discourse has taken over Twitter, almost hijacked the Venice Film Festival, and could mark the end of Harry Styles‘ short-lived acting career. I do not have the authority to declare who is right or wrong in this situation. I (like every single person on earth, it seems) have my opinions on it, but that’s not why I’m writing this. I am here to give younger people, particularly millennials and Gen Z’s, some life-saving advice. I am here to tell you how to explain this trainwreck of movie drama to your Boomer parents.

I will be drawing from personal experience, so my advice might be more catered to Irish parents. But, at the end of the day, all Boomers are pretty similar. They all text with one index finger, they fall asleep during every movie, and they think James Corden is actually funny. So, I hope that the majority of readers will get something out of this advice on how to help navigate the older generation through who spat on who.


RELATED: ‘Don’t Worry Darling’ Cast and Character Guide: Who’s Who in Olivia Wilde’s Thriller

Who’s in Don’t worry Darling?

It seems that amongst the chaos of illicit on-set relationships, feuds between actors and directors, and whether a pop star spat on an actor, we’ve forgotten what’s at the center of all of this – a movie. First things first, you have got to ensure that your parents know exactly which film they know each actor from. So, for Florence Pugh, remind them of the Little Women reboot with Saoirse Ronan (extra points for Irish boomers). For Chris Pine, he’s a Chris, so this may result in some real confusion, but when in doubt, just remind them of the Star Trek movies. Yes, they’ll probably argue that there is only one James T. Kirk and that’s William Shatner but show your mother a picture of Pine, and she’ll come around. For many readers’ parents, Harry Styles will need no introduction as they’ll remember your days of hormones, crying because you didn’t get concert tickets, and wondering why you’re always reading on an app called Wattpad.

The most essential actor to place is Olivia Wilde. If you’re a millennial, you’ve just got to remind them of that show with the California theme song. Remember the only queer character? Yep, that’s her. Now, the Irish parents might ask if she is really related to Oscar Wilde… Shut that down fast. Yeah, Mum, she went to acting school in Dublin, but her real surname is Cockburn!

For the best chance of your parents understanding this fiasco, you have to get into the nitty-gritty stuff. Olivia Wilde used to be in a long-term relationship with Jason Sudeikis and they have two kids together. Yes, everyone’s warm-and-fuzzy football coach in Ted Lasso. During the filming of Don’t Worry Darling, Sudeikis and Wilde broke up (no, they were never married, no, that’s not that odd, Dad!), and soon after, Wilde started dating Harry Styles. Pause to let your parents gasp and probably ask if he’s gay (blame those Wattpad fics your parents might have glimpsed over your shoulder). Just remind them that straight men aren’t limited to monotoned color palettes. Earlier this year, when Olivia Wilde was giving a speech at Cinema Con, she was served custody papers.. on stagein front of a massive audience. Yes, it gets that ugly. Kudos to Wilde, who maintained a pretty calm demeanor, but this was one of the first pivotal turning points in the Don’t Worry Darling universe.

Why Does That Actress and the Director Hate Her?

If your parents are anything like mine, names go out of their heads faster than Florence Pugh leaving that movie premiere. So, if they keep referring to the characters of this narrative as “that actress,” “the blonde one,” or “the man from Captain Galaxy (go easy on them with the Chrises), just sigh and acquiesce. So, in short, Florence Pugh and Olivia Wilde allegedly had feuds whilst filming the movie because Olivia Wilde allegedly kept disappearing from set with Harry Styles. Neither of the actresses has ever commented on this alleged feud. People have also speculated that Pugh was not comfortable with Wilde and Styles’ relationship because Pugh used to date Zach Braff who’s a friend and collaborator of Jason Sudeikis (yeah, the guy off Scrubs, Dad. Yes, I know he’s older, but they’re broken up now, so it’s fine!). These rumours were perpetuated when people started to notice that Florence Pugh was not promoting the film at all on her social media – pause to tell your parents that that is actually a big deal in the current movie landscape!

Why Do We Hate Shia LaBeouf Again?

Sometimes parents forget that certain celebrities are bad people, and you have to cut them some slack. Your dad might think Kevin Spacey is a really neat guy, or JK Rowling is the voice of a generation. Repetition is key here. Even though my mother always brings up how much she loves Disturbia (and I’m sure some of you have dads who are big Michael Bay fans), remind them of FKA Twigs‘ allegations of abuse against him. For a higher chance of successful results, I suggest playing them her album Magdalene, particularly, “Cellophane” just to reinforce how much of an icon Twigs is and why we, as a family, wholeheartedly believe her. On a more serious note, I also highly recommend listening to her episode of Louis Theroux’s podcast, where she candidly discusses her abuse and how much she wants to change the stigma and presumptions about victims of abuse. Whether you do it with your parents or on your own, it’s a very important listen and Theroux does a great job (as always) at giving her the space to discuss such a personal and difficult topic.

So, how does the Transformers Guy Fit Into This?

A week before the movie’s premiere at the Venice Film Festival, Olivia Wilde sat down with Variety to talk all things Don’t Worry Darling. Prior to this, Pugh had come forward to express her discomfort at how the movie’s promotion had been focusing on the sex scenes between her and Harry Styles, something that Olivia Wilde was discussing at length in interviews too. In this now infamous interview, Olivia Wilde claimed that she fired Shia LaBeouf who was originally cast as Jack, now Harry Styles’ part. She said of LaBeouf: “His process was not conducive to the ethos that I demand in my productions.” This is the point where your parents might shrug and say, “Well, she made the right decision.” This was all months before FKA Twigs would come forward with her allegations so lucky that Wilde never got mixed up with him. I now advise you to scream “WRONG!” in their face.

The next day, LaBeouf went to Variety (those editors must be exhausted) to tell us what really happened. He claims that Wilde never fired him, but he left of his own accord because they were not given enough time to rehearse before filming began. He then gave a video to Variety that Olivia Wilde sent him back when this was happening. The video got leaked so now you must go on Twitter, search “Miss Flo,” and show your parents the video, and let their jaws drop. Or maybe not, this is all pretty confusing, so they might not understand the magnitude of this video.

What’s a “Miss Flo”?

In the video, Olivia Wilde is essentially begging LaBeouf to stay with the movie. She says that this situation could be a “wake-up call for Miss Flo.” That’s Florence, Mum, remember the main actress? This unwanted nickname has now become the Don’t Worry Darling drama’s tagline. A lot believe this video suggests that Florence Pugh was uncomfortable with working with LaBeouf, but Olivia Wilde was persistent in casting him. For her to then lie and say she fired him because he is now an alleged abuser, we’re just left with one question: Who on earth is her publicist? Trisha Paytas? (Don’t even bother, especially the reincarnated Queen of it all). This was essentially the moment all hope for Don’t Worry Darling to live out a peaceful promotion and release rollout died. Twitter users angrily accused Wilde of facilitating abusers and lying to the press and public.

Wilde went on to still claim that she decided she did not want LaBeouf in the role in order to protect Pugh, telling Vanity Fair, “My responsibility was towards her. I’m like a mother wolf.” But, two days before this interview was published, text messages between Pugh and LaBeouf were leaked and they seemed to have a good rapport, with Florence asking LaBeouf can she vent to him about the shoot. Dad, are you falling asleep? Pay attention! So, was Olivia Wilde trying to make up a narrative that she fired an abuser to protect her main actress? Again, we’re not here to make judgments or accusations, but needless to say, it was not looking good for Wilde. Not to mention it was quickly announced after LaBeouf entered the chat that Pugh would be doing no press for the movie beyond the Venice Film Festival. Speaking of…

What’s This I Hear About Venice?

Do your parents ever reminisce on days when there’s been international breaking news and their eyes were glued to the screen along with the rest of the world, watching history unfold? We only experienced that recently with the death of that old lady in the big house. Well, not even “royalty” can compare to how closely people on Twitter were watching the rollout of the Don’t Worry Darling Venice premiere. To fully capture the atmosphere of this moment, remind your parents of that one time your entire family nearly had each other in headlocks on the way to your aunt’s 50th, and then you all had to show up looking happy and as if you get along. That’s exactly what this was like.

It started off when, at the press conference, Pugh’s absence was excused because her flight wasn’t getting in until later, only giving her time to walk the red carpet. But then, during the press conference, Pugh saunters through the festival (very Diana Revenge Dress, Mum), showing that she clearly could have made the conference. A now iconic video then went viral showing her with a massive Aperol Spritz and a shit-eating grin on her face. The entire cast walks the red carpet with Wilde, Styles, and Pugh all separated. Gemma Chan and Chris Pine were the strong toe separators that kept the nail varnish from smudging, and it seemed, for a second, that the drama was finally ov– oh hold your horses, Dad, don’t get up. This is only the tip of the Italian iceberg.

Explaining Spitgate

If you’re lucky enough to have parents who don’t know what a social media is, then it’s likely that they’re unaware of spitgate (ah, bliss). When Harry Styles is about to take his seat beside Chris Pine as the film premieres, he, for an instance, kind of looks like he’s moving his head to spit on Pine. Now, slowed-down, play-by-play videos show that no saliva or any other bodily fluid is actually leaving his mouth. But, Pine’s reaction is somewhat damning. He looks down to where the specter of spit could have landed, looks shocked, and then seems to be completely done with whatever situation he has found himself in. Chris Pine‘s rep confirmed that Styles did not spit on Pine. I never believed it anyway, it’s not the nature of someone who’s had a publicist longer than he’s had armpit hair. But, Pine is hiding something… Maybe he’s just thinking about that time in his life before we heard the words “Miss Flo” Ah, Chris, aren’t we all?

Why Do I Need to Know All This?

Once your parents get all the information, they’ll probably jump right back on their high horses and express their exasperation at celebrity culture and d’internet – even though they’re the ones who asked for all this information in the first place. They have the info, they know the story, but they don’t want the shame of wanting to know. They’ll then more than likely tell you that you need to get off your phone and enjoy the world around you, that celebrities aren’t even real people, and why should you care about what goes on in their worlds. I now suggest you tell them that George and Amal broke up, or that Rory McIlroy cheated on his wife, and watch them race for their phones faster than how long it took them to forget everything you just told them.

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