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Peter Pan in our magazines

THE MOVIE: Peter Pan

Jason Isaacs • Jeremy Sumpter • Rachel Hurd-Wood

The tagline for the movie is: ‘The Timeless Story as You’ve Never Seen it Before.’ According to the producers, what you haven’t seen before is a young boy playing Peter Pan. Portrayed by Jeremy Sumpter, Peter, a child who never grows up, whisks Wendy (Rachel Hurd-Wood), Michael and John Darling to Neverland, and into a whirlwind of adventures as they battle against the evil Captain Hook (Isaacs)

U.S. RELEASE: December 25 2003, Nationwide
• Rated: PG


“We have a tradition in England called Pantomime. It’s a children’s Christmas show, and Peter Pan is always played by a middle-aged woman, whose singing career is behind her. So my first experience in the theatre was seeing this middle-aged woman playing Peter Pan and wondering why Wendy found her so attractive.”

“When I was little I watched the Disney version all the time. That was my favorite movie other than Batman. I just loved the story about this kid who never grows up, and he can sword fight and fly, he can do anything – that’s what every kid wants.”

“I really loved the Disney version when I was younger, and I was really jealous of Wendy because she got to fly and do all these amazing things. When I auditioned for the film, I thought I’d better read the book, because I hadn’t actually read it before. I really enjoyed it, although I found it quite hard, with long words that I didn’t understand.”

“We had a lot of difficult routines we had to learn, and the sword fighting was especially hard for me because I had to learn how to keep my knees straight. Jason and I had to learn how to do these routines right before the shot, because we didn’t have a lot of time to rehearse each scene before we shot it. They’d say, ‘You’ve got fifteen minutes to learn this routine.’”

“This would be after we’d learned a different routine for three months! One of the hardest things about sword fighting is that it all comes from the feet, it’s all footwork like boxing, and we were in midair for a lot of the time, so it was quite tricky to thrust when you don’t have anything to thrust against.”

“When I first auditioned for Peter, they thought I was a bit too small for the part. A few months later they called me back, and I’d grown about an inch. I flew to London to audition with Jason. We had to do this sword fight in the park, and while we were rehearsing these cops ran over and said, ‘What’s are you doing?’ Because it looked like this guy was beating on this little kid.”

“I was frightened playing Wendy, knowing so many people had played it before, but I just thought it would be really good fun, because I couldn’t wait to fly and sword fight.”

“PJ [our director] drew this picture for me and he said, ‘What is this?’ I said, ‘Peter Pan.’ He goes, ‘No, it’s Jeremy Sumpter, you’ve got the part.’ The day I got the part was June 6th, 2002. And my gift from PJ was that same picture on the day I wrapped the movie, June 6th, 2003.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

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Images above © Universal Pictures
Feature © 2003 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #639, January 2004 cover

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