We are not a muse. Johansson with Bill Murray in Lost in Translation
she was compelling as the thorny side-kick Rebecca to 'l'hora Bit‘clt‘s equally dispossessed linid. When she was l7 she managed to distil the essence ol‘ the (‘oen brothers' eternal fascination with innocence and sin into a haunting look and an inappropriately timed blow job in The Man Who ll'rmt 't Tllt'l‘t’.
Now she is a revelation opposite Bill Murray in Lost in 'Ii‘uns/utiou. She provides the rare moments ol‘ interest in the pedestrian Girl with a Pearl Earring. and later this year she will lead in h e r first major Hollywood picture A Love Song for Bub/iv Lung opposite John 'l‘ravolta. In all of these films she plays a young woman who provides an escape for a lonely older male. ‘I always say working with older men is my l'orte.~ she jokes. bel'ore stressing that each screen relationship is different. never imbalanced and. more often than not. isn't even sexual. Perhaps this typecast emerges because the film industry can only contain brilliant young actresses by getting them to play wise angels to older men.
She is rapidly etncrging as the poster girl for the section ol‘ American film that sees Sundance. not the ()scars. as its apogee. Yet you get the impression that she has sought out the lel’tl'ield directors she has worked with in the last two years in order to learn from them. as much as they have sought out her. She already has ambitions to direct. She hopes to have the green light on a project by
24 THE LIST 'ri 2.? .J.":"1?’;,-'.
‘l FIGURED OUT
MANIPULATE MY EMOTIONS. I KNOW THAT I WAS ONLY 12' I I because I am young. I LEARNED HOW TO MAKE MYSELF VULNERABLE.’
spring. and she also has a good eye for technical talent (she name-checks everyone from Ann Roth who did costume design for
Just ('uusr' to the camera operators who
worked on Bob/iv Lung ).
How has she dealt with people patronising her‘.’ ‘I really don‘t stand for any ol‘ that shit. If someone is patronising me. I don‘t let it get to me. I know that this sounds stupid but young people are the next generation of old people. You. me. everybody: we’re all getting older. .\'o matter what age you are.~ Talk about confident. ‘l‘m a young woman. I'm very comfortable with my own sexuality. I realise that I’m still verv vulnerable
feel like I‘ve come into my own. I can really take care of' myself. ()l~ my travel. Of my own apartment. Of my own relationships.' Man. is she going to get some people’s back tip.
A wunderkind then‘.’ Solia ('oppola isn’t certain. 'She‘s got a wise look in her eyes. But has she got a wise head on her shoulders'.’ I'm not sure.~
Lost in Translation is on selected release from Fri 9 Jan, Girl with a Pearl Earring is on selected release from Fri 16 Feb. See reviews. Tim Abrahams travelled to London courtesy of GNER. To book tickets or for more information see www.gner.co.uk or call 08457
We take a brief look at five more precocious actresses. Words: Tim Abrahams
DREW W Boozing at nine. marijuana at ten. coke by 12. Barrymore was a child actress with a major habit. At the age of 15 she'd attempted suicide. posed for a nudie mag and divorced her mum, who was only marginally less of an asshole to her than her dad was.
MY GARLAND Born in Minnesota to a ﬁlm projectionist father obsessed with Hollywood. Died in Chelsea 47 years later with barbiturates clogging up her bloodstream. “She was — I'm sure — at peace. and has found that rainbow.‘ said fellow child star Mickey Rooney. “How she managed to live this long, I just don't know.‘ said her doctor. Philip Lebon. If you think she's good then you are probably a friend of Dorothy.
m TEMPLE Wrote the book on being a child star. She performed in 12 films during 1932. the year in which she had her fourth birthday. and won an Oscar when she was eight. Certainly not your average child star. she went on to become the US ambassador to Czechoslovakia and even had a non-alcoholic cocktail named after her.
At the age of ten, she made her starring debut opposite a Streets of San Francisco era Michael Douglas and still managed to act him off the screen. From such beginnings it was a quick step into the greatest films of the 70s: Alice Doesn't Live Here Anymore. Taxi Driver and the original Freaky Friday. More recently she's branched out into appearing in bad films.
SUSAN TULLY Frequently described as the female Todd Carty. Tully proves that Americans don’t have the whole child star field themselves. She forged a career in playing uncompromising women like Suzanne Ross in Grange Hill and Michelle Fowler in Eastenders but, like Foster, has since moved behind the camera. Direction credits include The Bill and Murder Investigation Team.