“It was so scary,” Ana de Armas says, recalling her arrival in Boston last fall to start filming Knives Out. “I was really nervous.”

The 31-year-old Cuban actress had been cast for the Rian Johnson murder mystery in something of a whirlwind. She auditioned for the role via Skype from Thailand, where she was shooting another movie; when that went smoothly, Johnson asked for an in-person meeting, with filming only a couple of weeks away; then, after passing that final round, she was cast just five days before she had to film her first scene.