Francesca Scorsese Reflects on Working with Luca Guadagnino: ‘It Was Really Cool to Experience Another Filmmaker’

Variety held their annual Power of Women event Thursday, May 2 at Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum, in New York City. Honorees included Anitta, Mariska Hargitay, Shonda Rhimes, and Amy Schumer, along with presenters that included Glenn Close, Bela Bajaria, Bruna Marquezine, and Sascha Seinfeld.

IndieWire caught up with Francesca Scorsese, who’s featured as an “Up Next” talent in Variety’s issue, on the event’s red carpet, where she reflected on working with Luca Guadagnino in HBO’s 2020 limited series “We Are Who We Are.” “He’s the most amazing, sweetest guy. Very eccentric, but that’s the best part about him,” Scorsese said. “It was really cool because I got to experience another filmmaker. You know what I mean? I grew up being on my dad’s film sets and seeing his directing style and just like literally just like living in that world.”

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“I saw similarities but then I also saw his own way of doing things,” Scorsese continued. “He was very interactive with his actors, really caring about what we thought, and really loved a lot of improv. It was the best time of my life. He really was able to gently push my boundaries. I literally had to jump off of a building at one point in the show. I’m terrified of heights. He made this whole thing and had all these people cheering me on and even made a video for my parents at the end of the zip line. It was just the sweetest thing. [Luca made me] not afraid to get out of my comfort zone.”

Francesca Scorsese will next be seen in Tyler Taormina’s “Christmas Eve In Miller’s Point,” set to premiere at Cannes this month. Until then, we are holding out hope to continue to see her father Martin’s cameo throughout her viral TikToks. “I literally just text [Martin] if I’m not home and I’m like, ‘Hey, you want to do a video?’ He’s like, ‘Sure!’ If I’m slacking and I’m not making videos, he’s like, ‘When are we doing more videos?’ So now I have a running list to try and keep it in the back of my mind.”

Inside the event, honorees gave speeches for each of the respective philanthropic causes they were supporting: CUFA (Central Única das Favelas) for Anitta, Joyful Heart Foundation for Mariska Hargitay, Debbie Allen Dance Academy for Shonda Rhimes, and Everytown for Gun Safety for Amy Schumer.

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - MAY 02: (L-R) Mariska Hargitay and Glenn Close attend Variety's 2024 Power of Women: New York event on May 02, 2024 in New York City. (Photo by Marleen Moise/WireImage)
Mariska Hargitay and Glenn Close attend Variety’s 2024 Power of Women.WireImage

During her speech, Mariska Hargitay addressed Harvey Weinstein’s recently overturned 2020 rape conviction. “I do want to say something about the overturned Harvey Weinstein conviction. Specifically about the reason it was overturned: [The court ruled it was because of] too many women’s voices,” Hargitay said. “Too many women were allowed to speak,” she said, referring to the conviction being overturned after the court found testimony against Weinstein was unfairly allowed based on allegations that weren’t part of the case. “Risky to let women speak? You’re damn right it is. Too many women speaking brings change.”

Amy Schumer reflected on a time where a production assistant was sexually harassed by an actor on set. “She told the appropriate people and did what she needed to do to feel safe and to heal,” Schumer told the crowd. “I called her to apologize and thank her for speaking up for the women who would come after her that she had saved. This isn’t perfect, but this is progress. And many of you here, today, your work will help guide these women so when the time comes, they’ll say, ‘Oh I’m so sorry but not on my watch, motherf*cker.’”

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