‘The Power Of The Dog’s Kirsten Dunst On Her SAG Nomination And How Thrilled She Was To Work With Her “Dream Director” Jane Campion

As she woke up this morning, Kirsten Dunst was thrilled to learn that she’d received a SAG nomination. “To be nominated by your fellow actors, is just the greatest feeling,” Dunst says. “I just wish we could be together to celebrate. That’s the only thing I hope, that I get to see everyone and we get to be together and have some fun.”

Jane Campion’s adaptation of the Thomas Savage novel The Power of the Dog stars Benedict Cumberbatch stars as wealthy Montana rancher Phil Burbank. Phil runs a ranch with his brother George (Jesse Plemons), whose decision to marry Rose (Kirsten Dunst) and raise her son Peter (Kodi Smit-McPhee) causes turmoil between the brothers as Phil torments the mother and son.

As Phil continues to torture Rose, she resorts to drinking to cope with the torment. “There was a very specific moment in the film where I do take my first drink,” says Dunst, “and it wasn’t written in the story. At one point I told Jane [Campion] how important I thought it was to have that moment where she decides to drink, because it’s such a big deal that she hates alcohol so much at first, but it just becomes her way to cope.”

Dunst isn’t the only star of The Power of the Dog to get nominated today, Benedict Cumberbatch and Kodi Smit-McPhee also received SAG nomination. As a mother son duo, Dunst says, “Kodi and I hit it off right away. I felt a connection with him, so it wasn’t difficult for me to embrace him as my son.” She and Smit-McPhee decided their characters “shared a little secret, that he had some involvement with his dad’s, my husband’s, death. So I think that gave an extra layer of mystery into our relationship, and I think that that helped us form an extra bond.”

As excited as she was to receive a nomination, nothing can compare to how excited she was to work with director Jane Campion. “I remember after she offered me to role,” says Dunst, “I ran to my mom, who was helping out with the children or something like that, and I screamed like I won the fricking lottery. She was one of my all time dream directors, and the performances in her films have inspired me as an actress throughout my career.”

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