‘Women Talking’ Interview: Sheila McCarthy On Her ‘Intensely, Wonderfully Hard Experience’

Sheila McCarthy read Women Talking well before being casting in the film adaptation. “Never for a second did I think it would be turned into a film,” she says. What started as a book club assignment turned into what the character actress called “an intensely, wonderfully hard experience.”

The timely tale follows a group of women debating whether or not to leave their ultra-religious community after it is revealed that the men of group have been assaulting them for years. McCarthy joins the likes of Claire Foy, Rooney Mara, Ben Whishaw, Jessie Buckley, and Frances McDormand, playing one of the matriarchs of the families making the decision on the future of their community.

I spoke with McCarthy over video chat to discuss the film and her own inspirations behind it. Women Talking is in theaters now.

A D.C area native, Cortland has been interested in media since birth. Taking film classes in high school and watching the classics with family instilled a love of film in Cortland’s formative years. Before graduating with a degree in English and minoring in Film Study from Elizabethtown College in Pennsylvania, Cortland ran the college’s radio station, where she frequently reviewed films on air. She then wrote for another D.C area publication before landing at Punch Drunk Critics. Aside from writing and interviewing, she enjoys podcasts, knitting, and talking about representation in media.