Olivia Colman Spills How Mother’s Role as NHS District Nurse Connects Her to ‘The Father’

In the Florian Zeller-directed drama, ‘The Favourite’ actress stars opposite Anthony Hopkins, and deals with the difficulty a daughter faced when her father is diagnosed with dementia.

AceShowbizOlivia Colman feels a special connection to her latest film “The Father“, because her mother worked in geriatric care. The actress stars in the drama alongside Sir Anthony Hopkins, and admits she feels particularly invested in the movie, which chronicles a man struggling with ageing.

“My mum was a district nurse for the NHS for 40 years, and her passion was always geriatric care,” the Oscar winner tells the BBC. “And I would go in the car with her when it was school holidays or when I was ill and I’d see lonely people in their homes, who didn’t have families. My mum is an ambassador for dementia care, so it’s always been a big part of my family’s life.”

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The Favourite” star thinks it’s particularly important to show the difficulty families face when a loved one is diagnosed with dementia. “It’s an awful decision to make – to look into your father’s eyes and see fear or confusion,” she adds. “It’s a terrible thing to still want to live your own life, but you have to have your own life. And that was a reason I wanted to play it; I wanted to play all those feelings.”

Meanwhile, her co-star signed on after being wowed by the script, “It was so powerful, and so simple, so direct, so concise, so compact,” Hopkins says. “I’ve been fortunate, in the last few years I’ve been involved with some wonderful films, but this was really unique.”

Directed by Florian Zeller, “The Father” follows an ageing man who struggles with memory loss, but rejects all assistance from his daughter and caretaker. It received four nominations, including Best Supporting Actress and Best Actor for Olivia and Anthony respectively, at both 2021 Golden Globes and 2021 Critics Choice Awards.

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