How Dakota Johnson Prepared for Her “F–ked Up” New Role

Dakota Johnson didn’t need to do lot of research for her role in The Lost Daughter.

The 32-year-old actress, who plays a young mother named Nina in the Maggie Gyllenhaal-helmed film, recently spoke to E! News about her part in the psychological drama, joking that she “didn’t Google ‘f—ked up women'” when getting into the dark character.

“Oh, it’s in there already,” she quipped in a joint interview with Gyllenhaal and her co-stars, Olivia Colman and Jessie Buckley. Needless to say, the candid comment left the group roaring with laughter.

“I think there’s so much in all of us and having the opportunity to just let some of it live—the space that Maggie created—I was able to go into the deeper, darker, more confused, more complex and intricate,” Johnson explained of her process. “I think all of us are like that. It’s rare when you have an opportunity to go there, to be real—rather than to be perfect, something that has to fit in a certain box.”

However, that doesn’t mean art is imitating life for Johnson. As Colman noted, “Don’t underestimate the imagination of actors as well.”