There are two new interviews of British actress Emma Watson online:
EMMA WATSON: DESPEREAUX‘S PRINCESS
While you’ll have to wait till July to see Emma Watson as Hermione Granger in Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, you can hear her this month in The Tale of Despereaux. She voices the character Princess Pea in the animated movie based on the bestselling children’s book about how a fearless mouse helps change lives in the kingdom of Dor.
Emma jumped at the chance to play the lonely princess, her first cartoon voice, and recorded her part over a three-year period, a few days at a time. Until she got the hang of it, “I was a bit nervous,” she admits. “But it was really fun, and I’m massively proud of it.”
She especially loves the movie’s message about forgiveness. “I think anyone can go see it and get something from it,” says Emma, who related to at least one aspect of Pea. “Everyone knows how it feels to feel lonely and isolated at times. It’s part of being human.”
Emma calls the princess “more gentle” than the feisty Hermione, who’s on the outs with her two pals in the sixth Potter flick. “She is pretty angry with Harry for a lot of it because he becomes addicted to this potions book, which she thinks is dangerous, and of course, she’s right. And she and Ron have a big argument over this silly girl he’s dating.”
The final Potter book, The Deathly Hallows, will be split into two movies due out in 2010 and 2011. Filming starts in February on the first one.
You might think Emma Watson has already lived a fairy-tale life, what with starring since age 11 in the mega-successful “Harry Potter” films. But it took her performance in the upcoming film “The Tale of Despereaux” to make her a princess.
The 18-year-old actress lends her voice to the charming animated tale (based on a best-selling children’s book) of a courageous mouse (Matthew Broderick) who saves a princess in the most desperate of times. MTV News caught up with Watson to chat about venturing into non-“Potter” acting, why she might be moving to the United States, and whether she’d ever take it all off for a role as her friend Daniel Radcliffe did.
MTV: Apparently, you only work on films based on beloved books.
Emma Watson: [Laughs.] There is a bit of a pattern, isn’t there? Who knows what’s next?
MTV: Was this project a no-brainer for you to sign on to?
Watson: I read the script, and I just loved it. It was so charming. I fell in love with Despereaux, so I really didn’t have a choice. I had to be his princess.
MTV: I would imagine all the green-screen work you’ve done in the “Harry Potter” films helped you with this one.
Watson: Completely. The key in working on an animated film is, you have to be incredibly imaginative.
MTV: You recorded your scenes opposite a veteran voice actor in Matthew Broderick. He was in “The Lion King,” after all!
Watson: Was he in “The Lion King”? Who was he?
MTV: He was Simba.
Watson: No way! I did not realize that! I knew he was amazing anyway, but I did not realize he did “The Lion King.” That is awesome. I have a whole newfound respect. I’m now even more in love with him.
MTV: Do you see a lot of differences between Hermione and Princess Pea?
Watson: Hermione is a real tomboy. Princess Pea is very graceful, and she’s more subtle. She’s much more girly. I just felt really sorry for her. She’s very alone.
MTV: I have a few questions about those other films you’re sometimes associated with.
Watson: [Laughs.] Oh, those ones no one’s heard of?
MTV: Have you seen “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” yet?
Watson: No! I’m dying over here. I literally can’t wait any longer. I think I’ll get to see it in January.
MTV: What’s next for you?
Watson: I’m attached to a film called “Napoleon and Betsy,” which will hopefully get shot in 2010. I’ve got the colossal final book [“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”] to finish off, and I’m going to university in September. I’m looking at scripts and auditioning. I’m very excited to do roles beyond “Potter.” It’s a very exciting time for me.
MTV: Where are you going to school?
Watson: I may stay in the U.K., but I’m also looking at universities in the States, on the East Coast probably. I’ve applied already to some schools over there.
MTV: What kind of roles are you looking for after “Harry Potter” is done?
Watson: I want when people look back on my career for them to not be able to put me in a box and say, “She always played this kind of role.” I want to do everything. I would love to be in a musical. I want to sing. I want to do a crazy Baz Luhrmann “Moulin Rouge!” sort of thing. I’d love to do a period piece. I’d love to do a French film. There are so many options out there!
MTV: What about theater? Would you ever take it all off onstage as Daniel Radcliffe’s been doing in “Equus”?
Watson: I think Dan is incredibly brave. I would be completely terrified!