Agyness Deyn discusses the sport of stripping
Agyness Deyn has made plenty of headlines for her “retirement” from modeling to pursue an acting career. But with the release of her first major film role — as the stripper girlfriend of a small-time drug dealer in “Pusher” — Deyn turns to Metro to set the record straight on that retirement thing.
Since you’ve started acting, you’ve been labeled as “retired” from modeling. Is that accurate?
The more acting I do, the less modeling I do — because of physical time but also because my enjoyment for one rather than the other is more. I did modeling for 12 years, and now this is so fresh and amazing that I just want to do this all the time.
How enlightening was your research into stripping for this role?
When I started working with girls on the London scene and going to work with them, the vision that you have of a stripper in your head from a fantasy perspective is like so a fantasy. I just hung out with them on a personal level, at their homes — especially this one girl called Jen who was amazing and so generous with everything about her. I went to work with her, and it was amazing, the security of the venues and the lifestyle — not just security as in the security guys, but those guys are like big brothers. It’s like a big family. And the girls are really amazing at their job. They’re like athletes — their bodies and what they can do, and they make it look so easy. I just came away from it feeling a lot of respect for the industry.
Why do you think there continues to be this appeal of movies about drugs and crime?
I think it’s interesting and exciting, I suppose. It’s like hyperreality, you know? It’s like the imagination of what you don’t see in everyday life, so you want to go to the movies and you want to see something that’s either shocking in an emotional way or takes you on a journey in some way that’s not your way in real life. It takes you away from your real life, and I feel like the majority of people, that’s not their real life. [Laughs]