Michael Shannon has confirmed ‘Eric LaRue’ moved locations because of Arkansas’ stance on abortion.

The ‘Shape of Water’ star will make his directorial debut with the film, and while he had a number of ideas in the pipeline that he was “excited about”, he realised it would be morally wrong to work there after the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade – which gave women the right to seek a termination – and the state initiated a quick change of their own laws to ban abortion.

He said: “We were all set to go in Arkansas and looking forward to it. We had some locations I was excited about, and locations are the name of the game right now.

“Then the Supreme Court did what they did, and Arkansas is a trigger state.

“So immediately the trigger laws went into effect, which prohibited abortion of any kind in any circumstances.

“I was talking to a friend of mine and she said, ‘You know you probably shouldn’t shoot there.’

“And I thought, Well gee, that would be a drag to try and move at this point. But the more I thought about it, the more I realised I agreed with her. So I called my producer and he agreed as well. And so we did it.”

The 48-year-old star acknowledged the decision won’t have a big impact on the state, but it felt important to move the production anyway.

He added in an interview with The Rake: “It hasn’t necessarily been easy. It’s not like we were going to bring billions of dollars to the state of Arkansas, so it’s more of a gesture than anything.

“The movie to me is the most important thing.

“But I couldn’t imagine waking up and going to work every day in a place where a woman doesn’t have the right to do what she wants with her own body – particularly as the main character in my movie is a woman.”