‘Zookeeper’s Wife’ star Chastain talks about history of strong female roles

They say it’s a man’s world, but Hollywood’s giving us more and more strong female roles for strong female actresses — and Jessica Chastain is at the top of that list. She spoke to Deco about her history-making roles.

Johan Heldenbergh (as Jan Zabinski): “The country’s completely overrun. They’re forcing Jews out of their homes.”

Jessica Chastain plays a real-life hero in “The Zookeeper’s Wife.”

Jessica Chastain (as Antonina Zabinski): “We have room. We could hide them. Bring as many as you can.”

She stars as Antonina Zabinski, who became an international symbol of hope after hiding hundreds of Jews in her zoo during the Holocaust.

Jessica Chastain: “Antonina Zabinski sacrificed the safety of herself, her children, everything she loved dear, to do the right thing.”

For Jessica, this role was…

Jessica Chastain: “A great responsibility to play a character that did so much for humanity.”

And she’s set to star as two more historical women in upcoming projects.

Jessica Chastain: “Women have always been brave. They’ve always been trailblazers and heroic, and so it’s important for me to acknowledge them, acknowledge the sacrifices they’ve made.”

She recently filmed “Molly’s Game” with Kevin Costner. She plays a former Olympian who becomes the target of an FBI investigation after being involved in an illegal gambling ring.

Jessica Chastain: “‘Molly’s Game’ deals with how society rewards and celebrates feminine power.”

And then there’s Caroline Weldon, an activist from the early 1900s, in “Woman Walks Ahead.”

So we had to ask her why she falls for these roles.

Jessica Chastain: “You know, when I went to school, I didn’t get to learn about women in history so much. For some reason, our textbooks didn’t talk about the incredible contributions that women had made.”

“The Zookeeper’s Wife” is now showing in theaters.

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