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Pretty Persuasion in our magazines

THE MOVIE: Pretty Persuasion

Evan Rachel Wood • James Woods
DIRECTOR: Marcos Siega

James Woods and Evan Rachel Wood THE CONCEPT:
In this dark comedy, an insanely intelligent, shockingly cruel and sexy Beverly Hills teenager who, believing her world is an orchestra and she is the conductor, manipulates all those around her…

U.S. RELEASE: August 12 2005, Limited • Rated: ?


“I remember thinking this was a totally absurd and ridiculous story, but at the same time it was such a clever commentary on our society. I knew I wanted to direct it because it was so much smarter than other scripts I had read. I felt I could do something with the material that didn’t suffer from the trappings and conventions of a regular teen movie.”

JAMES WOODS (Hank Joyce):
“I really don’t want to act anymore, and people say why and I say, ‘Have you been to the movies lately? I mean they’re just horrible.’ And I was sent this script and I said to the agent at the time, ‘What’s the deal?’ And he said, ‘They’ve offered it to you,’ and I said the answer was yes. Are you kidding, this is hilarious and so right on target. It’s so not politically correct.”

“I didn’t want Kimberly to be how everybody expects that character to be – stupid and mean, and that’s it. I just wanted to make her a real person, even if she was doing all these horrible things. I wanted you to know why she was doing these things, and if any of this could have been prevented; for you to feel for her by the end of the film.”

“I felt a script with such a heightened sense of reality, with such absurd characters, needed to be visually toned down and subdued. I had all these ideas in my head about making it feel timeless and shooting it in a very specific style. I also wanted to give it a slow pace that was in direct contrast to the fast talking exaggerated dialogue.”

“I heard that Evan was going to be in the film and that was great. I was hoping she’d be a little nice, and she turned out to be this absolute dream and the most talented actor I’ve worked with in a decade. Honestly, I think she’s one of the greatest actors ever. You can’t imagine how talented she is.”

“I think teenagers should go and see the film. I like the fact that the movie has a certain amount of gray at the end, so that the teenagers who go and see it, they’re laughing at it – ha, ha, this is so funny, and then something terrible happens and you realize, ‘Oh, there are real consequences for what was going on and that was actually really bad.’ So I think it would be great to have that moment or realization, okay, I laughed at that, but that was actually not so funny.”

“I have to say I admire the Goldwyn Company, because they stood up and paid the freight and that’s why we’re here. This is the movie that we wanted to make.”

Written by Judy Sloane. Back to top

Visit the official Pretty Persuasion site
Images above © Samuel Goldwyn Films
Feature © 2005 Visual Imagination.
Not for reproduction.

Film Review, #661, September 2005 cover

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