Q: What’s it like taking on the role of a Disney princess?
EF: It was my dream. Like, whenever anyone asks what I wanted to be when I grew up when I was little, I would say, “A Disney princess,” ’cause that’s the ultimate goal in life, I think for any young, young girl. Especially Sleeping Beauty. She was always my favorite one ’cause I felt like I looked (like her). You know, when you’re little you see which ones you look like the most and she was the one that I looked like the most. So I would go to Disney store and I would buy her clothes and her shoes, um, so to get to play this is, it’s really, like, the dream.
Q: Did you feel any pressure living up to Sleepy Beauty’s standards?
EF: Yeah, I mean, obviously I watched the animated movie so many times and it’s like you wanna do it justice because I feel like that Sleeping Beauty — they’ve already done it so perfectly, you know. I mean, I have to live up to that. So I did watch the animated film right before I started filming just because I thought it was in, she has a certain physicality ’cause she’s drawn a certain way and she holds her hands with these little gestures and her posture and her feet.
So I tried to bring that charm to the role. But also, in ours there is a little more to her ’cause she’s not just a delicate princess, you know. She, she has some strength and she actually shows real emotion. She gets sad and feels betrayal. A lot of secrets are hidden from her. It was nice that we could make her more human than just the cartoon.
Q:What was your favorite scene to shoot?
EF: Mine was when I pricked my finger on the spindle ’cause it’s such an iconic (scene) I mean, when I think about the original, that’s the scene I think of. Especially to film that scene, it was the very last day of filming that we did. So I was like, oh gosh, and everything was building its way up to that monumental moment and I felt I wanted to do it right, you know, everything has to be a certain way. ‘Cause that scene impacted me a lot when I was little.
It scared me more than Maleficent did because of the way the lights were and it looked like Aurora was morphing into Maleficent, like, with that green and purple light. So I was like, “We have to have those lights.” So they changed them. Made it more of a green hue and then I had the trance and, so I think it turned out good, right?
Q: Can you tell us about your audition process and where you were when you found out you got the part?
EF: Yeah, it’s funny ’cause it all happened really fast. A lot faster than those things normally do. I heard there was gonna be a Maleficent movie which you know, it’s from the villains point of view. But, there has to be an Aurora in there. So I was like, oh my gosh, I hope I get to, to be that.They asked me to come in, the director Rob, for a meeting. So I met with Rob and Linda, and Linda was the writer. She wrote Beauty and the Beast, so I was, excited to meet who wrote Beauty and the Beast too.
I had a meeting with them and we just talked and I think they just wanted to get a sense of me, kind of what I was like. They didn’t describe much of the story ’cause they wanted me to, they kind of already decided that they were gonna give me the part. So they told me in there that I got it. Then they handed over the script. So, like, them handing over the script was like the coronation of everything. I read the script in the car and kind of got motion sickness, reading it while driving home. I did not stop. I just kept going. I was so excited.
Q: Was it hard for you, without being able to see everything that was going on because of the special effects, to get where you needed to be in that moment?
EF: I know! It was a lot, it was more than I’d ever done before. I mean, you’re on a set so there is a stage and things are built on it, but everything basically surrounding you, all the little fairies, I mean, that, those are just tennis balls or little lights. And there’s like green and blue screens that you’re basically standing in, so you really, you have to imagine everything. It also can get a little technical too, but then you don’t want your performance to be prohibited by the technicality of it. You want to make sure that you’re still playing your character but, you still have to be aware of the little, the hand that you’re holding, but you’re not holding a hand, it’s air. So you have to make sure how would I hold it if it was there? We also had to do all this scanning of your — so what we would do, like, whenever you had a hair change or a wardrobe change, you stand on this turntable and stand completely still and they turn you inch by inch and scan your body. That makes a virtual you into a computer and then they can take that virtual you and put you onscreen. Yeah, so when I did all the floating and stuff, a lot of that was, they manipulated. I don’t know how it works but they did it.
Elle Fanning comes from a talented family and she’s bringing herself out into the spotlight with the choice of roles she is taking. She brings an elegance and innocence to Aurora, but still maintains a princes air to all things. I can’t wait to see what she does next!
Be sure to check back for more #MaleficentEvent coverage including more interviews with the cast, review of the movie, and more! Make sure YOU go see Maleficent with the family when it hits theaters May 30th
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***Disclosure: I attended #MaleficentEvent My flight, lodgings, and expenses were covered by Disney All opinions are 100% mine. ***