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Innocence, releasing in theaters on September 5th is a story about Beckett Warner, a teenage girl that is emotionally rattled by the loss of her mother. In order to try to move forward in her life she begins a journey in a new town and a new school. This school isn’t an ordinary one. The events that transpire will not only bring back the memories of loss and sorrow, but they will have Beckett questioning her sanity. I got an opportunity to speak with the girl who plays Beckett. The star of the film Sophie Curtis spoke to me about the film and life as a teenager.
How did you get involved with the film?
Sophie: I did the regular audition process, and then Hilary Brougher the director of the film narrowed it down to three other girls including me. We weren’t reading lines anymore, I met her for lunch and we talked for hours about Beckett, the world, being a teenager and all the struggles you go through at that age. I wasn’t as experienced as the other young actors that she was interviewing, but she had felt that I could bring Beckett to life just like she had imagined.
Jim: How did you approach the role itself, what was your take on the character as you, Sophie?
I think that Beckett has a very natural way about her, and she deals with huge struggles throughout the film. I was the same age as Beckett was during filming. I have gone through similar things she has gone through, obviously not the whole blood-sucking witches. I’ve had new crushes, new friends, and in new environments. I was confused, lost, and excited all at the same time. I think every teenager goes through that period, and I was going through it during filming. I just kind of related to it. When the film was over, it kinda helped me get through and overcome some of the things I was doing within my own personal life at the same time Beckett was overcoming the things that she was going through.
Jim: I felt you played the character very naturally and authentically. You are pretty new to the business. What drew you to these challenging roles?
Sophie: I grew up in New York City with two older sisters, and my mom is a fashion designer. I have always been part of this adult world. I have always been very fascinated by movies and movies with really strong underlying messages. It didn’t matter if they had witches or whatever, as long as they had a strong foundation that I could relate to. I a lot of people really want to be successful in their acting careers. I’d love to be successful, but I really want to play roles that are right for me and that I’m going to be really passionate about. It’s really hard to play roles you are not committed to. You work a lot of hours and days on a film and are responsible for the whole crew, cast, and everyone is depending on you. If you aren’t into it, it’s going to show on the screen.
Jim: Have you taken away any valuable advice on set that stands out to you?
Sophie: Yeah, when I was filming Innocence I particularly become close with the cast and my director. I was on set all the time, and I was talking to Kelly Reilly and Linus Roache. They just reminded me that when you are filming that you are so involved with it that you don’t event think about that this movie will be coming out eventually? People are going to see it and make their opinions and you’re not really worried about it. Then your time goes by and the film starts to develop and then it goes through editing and then film comes out. People start stating their opinions, and interviews and all that stuff and you kinda let it get to you and you hear all these things especially when you are starting out. They just told me that you just have to go back to that mindset when you were filming and remember it’s important to you and how awesome it was to just creating it. You have to hold all that dear to you and create this bubble around it that nobody can impact. They basically were telling me that for every piece of criticism there are hundreds of translations. It’s all about how you interpret it.
Jim: It’s really kind of looking at it by enjoying the experience and the ride, and learning from it.
Sophie: Exactly, I think I learned a lot from Beckett. I think all you can really hope for is that you give your all to this character, and when you actually see the final product that character gives a little something back to you. That’s what actually happened when I watched Innocence. You just have have to be reminded that for every 10 people who might not understand the film, there will be ones that will, and third that add up. Hearing things like you said that you thought my performance was authentic, that kinda stuff are the ones that add up at the end of the day.
Jim: Absolutely, anything that you are currently working on or that’s on the way?
Sophie: I finished production on a movie called Haters in December. I filmed it in Salt Lake City for a month, and that was really awesome. As of right now I’m really excited about Innocence it’s a huge thing in my life. I’m trying to enjoy the moment. I have a lot of opportunities coming out of it, just trying to decide which one is right for me and which one I feel really passionate about. Haven’t made any decisions yet, just trying to decide now.
Jim: Speaking to you and seeing you in the film you seem very grounded and you are on your way up in this business. Your approach is really wonderful.
Sophie: Thank you so much, that really means a lot to me.
Jim: Thanks for your time Sophie, continued great success.
Sophie: Thank you very much, have a great day Jim.
You can follow Sophie on Instagram: Sophie Lane Curtis