Jennifer Lawrence Confirms David O. Russell's Miracle Mop Movie & It Might Be Her Best Role Yet
Back in January, rumors started flying that David O. Russell was making a biopic about the creator of the Miracle Mop, Joy Mangano, and wanted his American Hustle star Jennifer Lawrence in the lead. While some applauded the idea, excited for what would likely be another Oscar-nominated turn by the actress, others were less enthusiastic. Casting Lawrence in the role would mean that the 23-year-old would be playing a woman a decade older, taking a part away from all those equally talented actresses actually in their thirties. Yet the conversation never went far, as thanks to neither Russell nor Lawrence making any further comment on the movie's production, the world seemingly forgot it existed. On Friday, however, the talk began anew when Lawrence confirmed that she will be playing Mangano in the film, like it or not.
While appearing on Live! With Kelly and Michael, Lawrence revealed that she'll be starring in Russell's as-yet-untitled biopic.
"He recently texted me at I think 4 in the morning, and he was like, 'I think I want to make a movie about the woman who invented the [Miracle] Mop. You want to do it?' I was like, 'Yeah,'" she recalled. "I can just imagine David looking at somebody mopping and being like, 'Yeah, that's my next screenplay.'"
As learned in January, the film will follow Mangano's transformation from a struggling single mom to a Home Shopping Network star, all due to her bestselling self-wringing mop. It'll be written by Russell and Bridesmaids' Annie Mumolo, and has been described as a "female empowerment tale." It'd also mark Lawrence's third collaboration with Russell, after last year's American Hustle and 2012's Silver Linings Playbook, for which she won an Oscar.
Personally, I'm in favor of Lawrence taking on the role. Yes, she's young for the part, but she was also young for her role as a mother of a toddler in Hustle, and clearly, it didn't prevent her from giving a powerhouse performance. Besides, there's nothing stopping Russell and Mumolo from using a bit of artistic license and cutting Mangano's age by a few years to better fit their lead actress, if they're worried she won't seem old enough.
Still, I do understand the argument of those hesitant to see Lawrence get handed a role that plenty of older actresses would kill to be offered. As excited as I am to see her take on the part, I probably would've been just as happy if Amy Adams, Kirsten Dunst, or Rachel McAdams, talented actresses who could fit the character's physical description just as well as Lawrence, had been cast instead. Lawrence is a wonderful actress and deserves high-quality roles, but perhaps not at the expense of women just as capable as she is, just without the same close relationship to David O. Russell (although that doesn't explain Adams' absence).
Regardless of how you feel about her casting, though, there's little question that Lawrence will be fantastic as Mangano, especially in a movie based around the ideas of female empowerment and success. It's easy to forget how talented the actress is when we're all so focused on her talk show soundbites and latest haircuts, but remember that she garnered two Oscar nominations and a win before most people her age even graduated college. Too young or not, Lawrence will undoubtedly give another knockout performance in Russell's movie — and, perhaps, her busy schedule will give those older actresses more time to find equally worthy roles of their own.