Madisen Beaty on 'Outlaws and Angels' and Playing Patty Krenwinkel on 'Aquarius'
Fans of the western genre will be excited to know a new film has just been released that made waves at Sundance this past year. The film is called Outlaws and Angels and stars some of the biggest names in the west including Frances Fisher (Tombstone) and her and Clint Eastwood’s daughter, Francesca Eastwood. You’ll also see big names like Luke Wilson, Chad Michael Murray, Teri Polo and Madisen Beaty.
The film follows a group of outlaws led by Henry (Chad Michael Murray) who are evading a bounty hunter named Josiah (Luke Wilson) after robbing a bank and killing an innocent person. The gang ends up at the house of George (Ben Browder) and Ada Tildon (Teri Polo) and begin to turn their and daughters Charlotte (Madisen Beaty) and Florence (Francesca Eastwood) lives into a living hell.
Actress Madisen Beaty was nice enough to speak with us here at TheMovieNetwork.com and tell us about her role in Outlaws and Angels, her current role as Patty Krenwinkel on Aquarius and her future projects.
Nick Leyland from TMN: Can you tell us about your character in Outlaws and Angels?
Madisen Beaty: Well, I play Charlotte Tildon. I play Francesca Eastwood's sister, Teri Polo and Ben Browder's daughter, and we're kind of just this stray family out in the middle of nowhere, we really haven't had much social interaction with anyone in a long time, and kind of wound up in their own secrets. Then Chad Michael Murray and his band of outlaws come through and wreck havoc. [chuckle] The first time I read the script, I kind of had this experience where I was reading it and couldn't stop reading it, and then I would put it down because I just was so surprised by the way it took me. I was like, "I'm not gonna read it anymore. I can't." And then I couldn't help myself and I'd pick it back up, and then I couldn't stop thinking about it. So I'd be really curious to know if you had the same experience watching it.
TMN: Well, it's a story that you don't know what's happening at first, and then when you get to the house, it's kind of Little House on the Prairie meets a Tarantino style thing going on, don't you think?
Madisen Beaty: That's a good description, I'm gonna steal that. [chuckle] Yeah, I loved it. It was unlike anything I've ever read before.
TMN: Was it based on anything?
Madisen Beaty: I think it's his wicked imagination. From what I hear, it wasn't based off anything. I do remember him talking about how wasn’t originally all these characters and it eventually developed into that. Charlotte, my character, wasn't in the first couple drafts, and now I can't imagine it without her. She just adds this whole new element to the family and it's particularly this... There's this enemy thing going on between Fran and my character. So that was really fun to explore. And she's kind of a mean person.
TMN: I liked how uncomfortable everybody looked in the film. Everyone was just so sweaty and dirty.
Madisen Beaty: I'm glad it came across on screen, I really feel like the whole cast kind of threw themselves into it. We were out in the desert in New Mexico, long hours, and they would just layer on this dirt and grime on our teeth, 'cause no one brushed their teeth back then. It was really long days, but we're very committed to it, we shot it a lot like a play, and kind of just threw ourselves into the dirt and the grime of it, and made it really real to where when the violence started coming, it felt very authentic.
TMN: You should have taken a few pictures of all of you guys on set breaks playing on your iPhones in those costumes.
Madisen Beaty: I guess we have a lot of pictures of that and it's kind of funny. It was like that thing where I'd be walking to lunch and I'm in this long 1800s dress and I'd go and I do mouthwash in order to get the grime off my teeth; which is kind of funny 'cause you'd look around and it's all these 21st century people on their phones again at lunch and wearing these 1800s clothes and there's old guns laying around. [chuckle] It's kind of a funny sight.
(Madisen Beaty in Outlaws and Angels)
TMN: Have you been a fan of westerns in your life?
Madisen Beaty: No, I hadn't really explored that world yet, when I'd read this. I'd seen True Grit, but I hadn't really watched many westerns. I'm a huge fan of Tarantino, though, so I kind of compared it to that, and then with Django. But I just recently started to try to watch westerns; the director gave me a list of movies to start with. I grew up in the business, so I've seen western movies from the past five or 10 years, but I'm just now recently digging into everything from before my time.
I think westerns are so rare, and I think we need more of them. It's so fun to make and I love just talking to people after they've seen it. At Sundance we had a pretty good reception of it, and then it's just unlike anything people have seen before, especially the younger generation because they're such a rarity today. And also being shot on film, I was really proud to be a part of that. I'm a champion for film and I've done it once before, and to work with that again was really fun, even with the challenges that come with it. I'm really glad that they're still holding on to that.
TMN: Francesca (Eastwood), she's obviously no stranger to westerns with her family. Her mom who's in the film, Frances Fisher, she's also in a bunch of Westerns. She's in "Tombstone", and all that stuff. Was there any Clint (Eastwood) sightings on the set?
Madisen Beaty: Clint never came to the set, but Frances did and she was wonderful to have around, and Fran and I really bonded a lot at the time. It was really great to have them all on set. Fran's really natural. It felt really real, and she's really, really sweet. I think they expected that maybe we wouldn't get along because our characters don't get along, and I felt like I had a new sister every time I left set.
TMN: Was there a certain actor that you connected with more than anyone else while on set?
Madisen Beaty: I would probably say Fran, but it's hard to answer that because it was mainly Chad and the two outlaws, Keith Loneker and Nathan Russell, and then Ben Browder and Teri Polo and Fran, and it was mainly all of us on set every day, hours on end, filming it like a play. We practically shot it in order and we were all together the whole time. So it's hard to say if I bonded with one more than the other because it kind of... It doesn't happen a lot and we all really bonded.We would all stay as a group and kind of we're in it together the whole time, and that just doesn't happen, and I attribute it a lot to how JT worked from day one. It was a passion project for all of us. We were all there because we loved the script and we're committed to it, and it felt like a team effort the whole time.
(Francesca Eastwood in Outlaws and Angels)
TMN: And you've worked with Teri Polo on The Fosters, right?
Madisen Beaty: Yes. I love Teri. It was so wonderful to reunite with her, especially going to a completely different country.
TMN: This is a little bit different content.
Madisen Beaty: Yeah, It is very different from The Fosters.
TMN: Were you comfortable with all the violence in the film?
Madisen Beaty: Yeah, I was. I felt like JT explored it really beautifully. I feel like he has a great message behind all of it, and it's fun to film, and I think it'll keep people thinking at the end of the day. To me, the marking of a good movie isn't one that you love, it's one that you're still thinking about, and I couldn't stop thinking about the script, and when I see it I'm still thinking about it a week later. It's a bit twisted, but that's really fun to explore.
TMN: You're actually playing a real-life killer right now on Aquarius, right?
Madisen Beaty: I am playing a real-life killer. I play Patty Krenwinkel. It's been a year of violence, I guess.
TMN: Are you having fun with that role?
Madisen Beaty: Oh, it was very fun to explore. Really eerie, of course. I mean, our set looked just like the actual crime scenes and it was really great to explore it. I read Helter Skelter, and watched a bunch of YouTube videos with the Manson girls in them. It was really fun to explore. And Gethin Anthony who plays Charles Manson was just lovely to work with. I joined for second season. They had already bonded through the first season, most of them, and they were all very welcoming when I came along. And that's airing now on NBC, which is very exciting. It's a good, busy month.
TMN: She's still alive. Did you ever talk to her?
Madisen Beaty: You know, people ask me that the most, but I didn't. I know she's in California in a prison up north, and I know that she now trains seeing eye dogs and has become a Born Again Christian, but I never even met her. I kind of just relied on YouTube videos, and after I started filming, I started reading Helter Skelter, 'cause I did want it to be more visual.
(Madisen Beaty as Patty Krenwinkel on Aquarius)
TMN: What else can we look forward to seeing from you?
Madisen Beaty: My other movie called Other People by Chris Kelly, which also went to Sundance is coming out on September 9th, and there's another indie I did called The Radiant City, thats' currently being shopped around. So, hopefully both of those will be coming out soon, and then focusing on Outlaws. And in the meantime I'm writing a lot and looking for the next one.!doctype>