Joey King reveals how playing Gypsy Rose Blanchard in The Act has affected her mental health

23 April 2019, 17:47 | Updated: 23 April 2019, 17:49

Joey King has opened up about the mental toll that playing Gyspy in The Act has taken on her...

By Sam Prance

Joey King has discussed how playing Gypsy Rose Blanchard in Hulu's The Act has affected her mental health.

Gypsy Rose Blanchard reveals how she feels about Joey King playing her in The Act

Ever since The Act first aired on Hulu in March, fans and critics alike have praised Joey King for her amazing performance as Gypsy Rose Blanchard. The series tells the harrowing true story of Gyspy, whose mum Dee Dee (Patricia Arquette) made her wrongly believe that she was severely ill. After years of abuse, Gypsy killed Dee Dee and is serving 10 years in prison for the crime. Now Joey has spoken at length about Gypsy and the affect that playing her has had on her.

The Act: Joey King calls playing Gypsy Rose Blanchard in the Hulu series "bizarrely enjoyable"
The Act: Joey King calls playing Gypsy Rose Blanchard in the Hulu series "bizarrely enjoyable". Picture: Rachel Murray/Getty Images // Hulu

Discussing the role with TV Guide, Joey stated: "It was pretty intense. I've never played a character where I had to transform myself so much. Getting in that head space was very dark. I'm not a method actor, so I never stayed in it, but it was so dark going to those places and making yourself think those thoughts and putting yourself in that person's shoes." She then explained: "It is very mentally taxing."

Over 100,000 people sign petition to free Gypsy Rose Blanchard from prison

In spite of the mental toll that it's taken on her, Joey reveals that she is proud of her performance: "As an actor you can only dream of being able to transform yourself and put yourself completely in someone else's shoes and strip away all your ego and vanities... It is one of the first times I've been able to watch a performance of mine and actually be comfortable with telling myself I'm proud of myself."

Joey also shouted out Patricia Arquette, who plays Dee Dee: "I could write an essay about working with Patricia. She is one of the nicest people, and the best scene partner. We got to the point where we got so close and had so many crazy scenes she told me 'If you ever think I need another take or if I could improve the performance in some way I want you to tell me, because I trust you.'"

Speaking to US Weekly about Gypsy, Joey admitted: "There were times when I took Gypsy home and it was really hard to shake her off. I had to decompress by watching cartoons." She then discussed it further by adding: “It was a bizarrely enjoyable experience to able to completely strip away all vanity and become Gypsy, so fuck what other people say."

The real Gypsy Rose Blanchard has actually expressed her excitement about Joey playing her but has criticised The Act at large. Hulu have created the entire series without her involvement and are, subsequently, profiting off her story without her consent. Gypsy intends to pursue legal action against the show's creator Michelle Dean.

What do you think of Joey's performance as Gypsy?