Movies

Pals Jane Fonda and Candice Bergen dish on their new film Book Club

'This movie shows that older people are still vibrant'

They don't come much more legendary than Jane Fonda and Candice Bergen.

The long-time friends – along with pals Mary Steenburgen and Diane Keaton – have teamed up together in the hilarious new movie Book Club.

The story follows four friends whose lives are changed when they read Fifty Shades Of Grey for a book club meeting.

Here, Jane and Candice reveal to TV WEEK what it was like to work together, and what – at 80 and 72 respectively – they've learnt about life and the showbiz industry.

Candice, Mary and Jane portray lifelong friends.

TV WEEK: It must have been fun for you all to be together on the set of Book Club, how did you find working together?

Candice: I've known Jane and Diane for many years and I knew Mary slightly before we made the film. Working with them all was pure pleasure. Jane, especially, is remarkable. She is whip-intelligent and she cares about people. We were taking a photograph, the four of us, and she took the iPhone and corrected it, retouched it, so that everybody looked their best.

Jane: If you were to imagine a get-together between Candice, Diane, Mary and I, it'd go something like this: Mary's drinking tequila, I'm drinking vodka, Diane is drinking red wine on ice, and Candy is drinking divine white wine probably. The best part is there's a particular laughter when women friends get together that comes from somewhere really deep. It's really cleansing.

TV WEEK: What was the vibe like on set?

C: We shot Book Club mostly in a house in Brentwood [in California] and the garage was our green room. Every time we'd have downtime, we'd go in the garage and all our chairs were set up there in a circle and we would just yak and yak and yak.

J: When you go into a movie like this, you worry that there's going to be one or two divas. It's a pain in the arse if you're working with a diva. It was such a joy that none of us are. We're all just regular folks.

Book Club stars Diane, Candice, Jane, and Mary.

TV WEEK: How did you prepare for this role, was there much research involved?

C: I read the juicy parts of Fifty Shades when the book came out, but I didn't know how to get a copy of what was considered a porno without being recognised. Someone had to lend me their copy!

J: I thought it was very important to make a movie that shows that older people are still vibrant, still alive, still ready to be woke if necessary, and still with very deep friendships.

TV WEEK: What are your thoughts on older woman in Hollywood?

C: I don't know how we got this movie made; the studio didn't want to go with older actresses. They wanted younger, vibrant actresses – but there's nobody more vibrant than us, frankly!

J: I actually think it's harder to be young in Hollywood right now, because of social media. You never know who's taking a picture. I'm so glad social media wasn't around when I was coming up; I wouldn't be alive right now! There's also too much pressure on women to be sexy and naked. I don't envy the young ones at all.

TV WEEK: Do you worry much about ageing or are you happy to embrace it?

J: I don't like the 70-is-the-new-40 idea. I wouldn't want to be 40 again.

C: I've given up any pretence of concealing my age. I had my eyes done when I was 41, but nothing excessive since, because I don't believe in it. There are a lot of women who are my age and I look like their grandmother! I think we should just feel privileged to grow older. Anyway, as you get older, you get much smarter.

Book Club is in cinemas now.

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