A Minute With: Margot Robbie on feisty females and 'Focus'

Wed Feb 25, 2015 2:53pm EST
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By Alicia Avila

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - After making her film breakout as the no-holds-barred wife of Leonardo DiCaprio's Jordan Belfort in 2013's "The Wolf of Wall Street," Margot Robbie is taking on Will Smith for a tango of twists and turns in the underground world of heists.

In "Focus," out in U.S. theaters on Friday, Australian actress Robbie, 24, plays Jess, a street-smart, spirited pick-pocket who teams up with veteran con-artist Nicky (Smith) to learn his trade.

Robbie talked to Reuters about the need for strong women in film and working with Smith.

Q: You've played feisty, strong women in both "Wolf of Wall Street" and in "Focus," what draws you to those characters?

A: Strong female characters for sure but they don't necessarily have to be like the conventionally strong.

As long as they're strong in their own aspect and have strong opinions, then I find them interesting, people who can shift opinions and stuff, (otherwise) it's less fun to play and create a character with. So it doesn't have to be the same every time but something a little different.

It's always good to have a story arch. For example, Jess in this film is a certain person at the beginning of the film and a totally different kind of person by the end of the film and that's exciting as an actor because there's a lot for you to do there.

Q: How urgent is the need for strong female characters portrayed in Hollywood movies?   Continued...

Cast member Margot Robbie poses at the premiere of "Focus" at the TCL Chinese theatre in Hollywood, California February 24, 2015. REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni