Glenn Close Reveals Why She Does Not Consider Alex Forrest from ‘Fatal Attraction’ a ’Villain’

by Atlanta Northcutt
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The unforgettable image of a bunny being boiled in a pot is one we owe to Glenn Close in her classic role as Alex Forrest in the film “Fatal Attraction”.

If you haven’t seen the 1987 thriller, then you haven’t seen another side of Close’s acting chops. Many believed she should’ve won an Oscar for the role.

Glenn Close has been in feature films like “101 Dalmations” and “Dangerous Liaisons”, providing audiences entertainment since 1974, and is now starring in a new Netflix movie, “Hillbilly Elegy”.

Close plays Cruella de Vil in “One Hundred and One Dalmations“. In the 1996 live version of the Disney film, she is the epitome of evil by attempting to turn all of the puppies into a fur coat.

Glenn Close on Her Troubled Character of Alex Forrest

In “Fatal Attraction,” Close portrays her character, Alex Forrest, as a more troubled human than a monster. Close perfectly captures a woman in the midst of a mental breakdown, suffering from obvious mental health issues (to say the least) and desperately wanting to be loved.

“I never in a million years would call Alex Forrest a villain, and I’ve talked about it,” says Close. “Because people didn’t know her backstory, they didn’t know the ‘why’ of her behavior. After conferring with psychiatrists, I was playing a woman who had been incested by her father at a very, very early age and long enough to really traumatize her. When you do the research, people who have gone through situations like that are incapable of kind of normal human relationships.”

Close sat down with Vanity Fair in a nearly 20-minute video interview. She comments on and tells stories about all of her roles. One of these includes Close’s character, Alex Forrest, in “Fatal Attraction.” Close explains why she doesn’t view Alex as a villain.

“You’re made into a sex object before you even know what sex is, and then you’re made to feel shameful about it. You hate yourself,” she says. “A sizeable percentage of people sadly can take their life by suicide. The original ending was that she actually did that, and I felt that was how that character would end.”

About ‘Fatal Attraction’

The film follows the journey of Dan Gallagher, played by Michael Douglas. The suave businessman is rising up the ranks at his New York law firm. Dan’s marriage to his wife Beth, played by Anne Archer, is a happy one, and they have a young daughter. On the outside, it appears Dan and his family live in a happy home.

However, everything changes when Dan meets Close’s character, Alex Forrest, a beautiful and sexually-driven book editor. After a night of galavanting, Douglas’ character sees Alex as a one-night stand. Hurt and feeling used, Alex becomes unstable. The more he tries to push her out of his life, the more Alex clings to her and Dan’s relationship.

Her behavior escalates more and more, even cutting her wrists in order for him to not leave. She continues to aggressively pursue him, obsessively stalk him, and finally begins to go after his wife and child.

The Ending Glenn Close Wanted for Alex

“Famously, they tested the movie. Six months afterward, they came back to me and said ‘we’re changing the ending’ which was a real shock,” says Close. “I felt I was betraying the character that I believed in, and in that doing it, I was not happy.

“I learned how important catharsis is for the audience to feel like some sense of order will be restored. That’s classic,” adds Close. “It was a hard journey, and it was a hard lesson to learn. But it’s something I’ve never forgotten.”

Spoiler Alert:

“I still think it would be fascinating to tell exactly the same story from her point of view. And she would not end up a villain,” says Close.

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