Aubrey Plaza has been having a great year. She’s picked up critical acclaim for her roles in Emily the Criminal (which she also produced) and just won a SAG award as part of the all-star ensemble of The White Lotus season 2. And now it looks like she’s about to become the next big action star on the strength of her scene-stealing performance in Operation Fortune. She also enjoyed a perk most actors never experience — beating up on co-star Jason Statham.
Plaza got physical with The Transporter star at the urging of their director, Guy Ritchie, who wanted to capture some of the pair’s behind the scenes bantering energy. “I was always going at [Statham]. I would do things like say a line and then slap his ass really hard, and Guy would come up to me in between takes and go, ‘You know, I liked the bit where you slapped his ass, and maybe you could do that again,’” the Ingrid Goes West star told Collider.
Plaza was more than willing to carry the spanky energy to the screen. “I’d be like, ‘Yes sir.’ So it was fun and felt like we were just trying to take the piss out of each other, as all the British people say. It was great fun.”
Plaza lobbied Ritchie hard for the role, and even went a little aggro with the Snatch director during their first meeting over Zoom. “I went in for the kill and I just aggressively – and I’m not ashamed to say it – I aggressively just went at him and said, ‘You absolutely must hire me,’” Plaza confessed. “You know I’m the man for the job. I’ll get it done. I’ll be funny, I’ll kick people’s ass, I’ll do whatever you want me to do. So just hire me.”
Plaza’s full-court press seems to be a win-win for her and Ritchie both, with many critics calling out her performance as the best thing about the movie. It looks like she can safely tick off “Action Star” on her checklist of already impressive accomplishments.