The drama of “Don’t Worry Darling”


Tribune News Service

The new film starring pop icon Harry Styles hit the theaters on Sept. 23, but the drama that preceded its release garnered just as much-if not, more-attention.

THEO ALDER, Staff Writer

“Don’t Worry Darling” is a film that premiered in theaters on Sept. 23, 2022. Directed by Olivia Wilde, “Don’t Worry Darling” follows a life in a 1950s perfect suburbia that twisted around much like the Stepfoward Wives–something’s not quite right. The film has a star studded cast, which is where the drama starts.

Though Harry Styles stars in this film, he was not originally casted for his role–it was initially given to  Shia LaBeouf.

According to NME, “His departure from the project in 2020 was originally cited by the studio as a ‘scheduling conflict,’ until director Wilde claimed to Variety that she fired him in order to create a ‘safe, trusting environment’ on set.” 

LaBeouf is also a known abuser; he has had assault allegations as well as being sued by his former partner, singer FKA Twig. It would make sense that the set would be tense during intimate scenes. With that,  LaBeouf was  cut from the project and replaced by Styles. Though Styles has appeared in other films, his status regarding acting has been questioned. How does this One Direction star go from singing to acting without any experience? It has been confirmed that Wilde and Styles are dating–this may have played a role in his casting.

According to Glamour, “Wilde announces that she and her fiancé of seven years, Jason Sudeikis, split toward the beginning of the year (2020).” While on set, the tensions were high, with cast members stating that there was a screaming match between Florence Pugh and Wilde. 

Labeouf released a video on Aug. 26  of this year with the director begging to have him back on the project, as quoted by Glamour, “The actor also sent Variety a video that Wilde had allegedly sent him at some point during all this negotiation, in which she refers to Pugh as ‘Miss Flo’ and seems to confirm that the actors did not get along. ‘I feel like I’m not ready to give up on this yet, and I too am heartbroken and I want to figure this out,’ she says in the video, which has leaked online. ‘I think this might be a bit of a wake-up call for Miss Flo,’ Wilde continues, ‘If she really commits, if she really puts her mind and heart into it at this point and if you guys can make peace—and I respect your point of view, I respect hers—but if you guys can do it, what do you think? Is there hope?’” With all this drama and a deliberating nickname for Pugh, 

The drama continued at the Venice Film Festival–Pugh did not show up to the press conference for “Don’t Worry Darling” because of “scheduling conflicts.” According to NPR, “When asked about working on the film, Styles–who is dating Wilde–gave a response that the internet is still trying to understand: ‘The thing I like about the movie is that it feels like a movie.’ Chris Pine’s reaction to this moment birthed memes that would pave the way for many more to come.”  

Pugh eventually arrived to the premiere of the film and took pictures with the cast. The drama continued well after they all sat down. Rumors of Styles spitting on Pine before taking his seat and how seating arrangements were made to keep certain individuals from each other filled the press.

The movie premiered in the U.S. Sept. 23, 2022. Many people speculate that all of the drama was a publicity stunt to get more buzz around the film. How much of the drama do you think is real? You’ll have to go see the movie and decide for yourself if it needed the push of drama to get butts in seats, or if it was a good enough film on its own.