Indie cinema’s new darling Geraldine Viswanathan is the star of the woke film Blockers
Up and away
Australian actor Geraldine Viswanathan’s first brush with fame was in November 2016, when her skit Yeah The Boys, with comedy group Freudian Nip, went viral. The New South Wales native (her father is Indian, and mother is Swiss), had joined them just a few months earlier, after dropping out of university, to pursue a career in the arts. Then, in March 2017, as the group was prepping to perform at Melbourne Comedy Festival, she got a call summoning her to Los Angeles, USA, to meet with Kay Cannon, who was set to direct Blockers, a sex comedy about high schoolers planning to lose their virginity; she had seen Viswanathan’s self-taped audition and loved it.
The film hit screens in April, and changed her world. We caught up with the now New York-based actor to talk about the film, and her life after:
ELLE: Tell us about your character, Kayla.
Geraldine Viswanathan: Kayla is a smart, independent young woman who is curious about life beyond school, and is eager to get out there and try new things.
Denim dress, price on request, Untitled Co.. Leather sneakers, Viswanathan’s own
ELLE: Would Blockers have turned out differently if a man had directed it?
GV: I don’t think we’ve seen the subject of virginity-loss through the female perspective yet. Kay told us stories of her own high-school experience and losing her virginity, and it’s those little details that make the movie feel real. Blockers needed a female director because it tackles a delicate subject that needs to be treated with the care and respect of someone who can relate to it.
ELLE: What’s the one message you hope this film sends?
GV: I hope kids are inspired to be unapologetically true to themselves, and that the stigma surrounding women and sex becomes a thing of the past.
Photograph: Ricardo Abrahao
Styling: Malini Banerji
Hair: Corey Tuttle/Honey Artists
Make-up: Sabrina Ziomi
Assisted by: Divya Gursahani and Riya Khanna (Styling)