Mass: Ann Dowd discusses her latest role, which deserves an Oscar and Bafta nomination

It’ll be a crying shame if her performance doesn’t receive awards attention

Jacob Stolworthy
Thursday 27 January 2022 15:35 GMT
Mass trailer

Simply put, Ann Dowd needs to be nominated at the Oscars and Baftas for her her latest film.

Dowd stars in Mass, a drama that premiered in Sundance Film Festival last January and has finally been released in the UK on Sky Cinema and NOW.

The drama from debut writer-director Fran Kranz is essentially a four-hander focused on two sets of parents who meet for a painful conversation in the aftermath of a violent tragedy – namely a high school massacre in which one set of parents, played by Martha Plimpton and Jason Isaacs, lost their child at the hands of the other set’s son.

Dowd, known by many as Aunt Lydia in The Handmaid’s Tale, completes the cast alongside Reed Birney, recently seen as presidential candidate Dave Boyer in Succession’s third season.

The Independent spoke with Dowd ahead of the film’s release.

“There was no one without the other,” Dowd said of her co-stars. “It was a profound experience with those wonderful actors. We knew what we had to do; we were willing to get there to the best of our abilities and stay there for as long as necessary. We were safe with one another.”

However, the filming experience was so intense that Dowd says she does not plan to watch the film.

“I’m just gonna tell you right now – I always slightly hesitate ‘cause it could really be taken the wrong way – but I have not seen the film and the reason I’ve not seen the film is because I lived it,” she told The Independent.

Ann Dowd says she views her experience filming ‘Mass’ as ‘sacred’
Ann Dowd says she views her experience filming ‘Mass’ as ‘sacred’ (Bleecker Street)

“It was such a sacred experience that I don’t wish to view it in another way. I had the privilege of living it. That stays true now. I mean no disrespect or anything to my colleagues who I love and admire.”

Surely her co-stars would completely understand her wishes? “They’re not judgemental, although I’m sure somewhere in their mind they’re like, ‘What is wrong with this damn woman? Would you watch the damn thing?’ But, at any rate, we remain very close and I have tremendous admiration for them.”

Mass is available to watch now on Sky Cinema and NOW. The Bafta nominations will be announced on 3 February with the Oscar nominations arriving the following week on 8 February.

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