Hello, is this the Dakota Fanning we have all come to know and love?
Yes … and no. But one thing is certain – our little Dakota is all grown up.
“I felt so lucky I was asked to be in the film because I know a lot of people still think of me as younger,” Fanning says.
“They have watched me grow up since I was 6 (opposite Sean Penn) in I Am Sam.
“So to be able to do this role was really important to me.”
Fanning, 16, who warmed hearts in films such as I Am Sam and The Secret Lives of Bees, morphs into uber rock chick Cherie Currie in the new film The Runaways.
The ambitious saga chronicles the rise of the famed girl band of the same name and, eventually, the fall of Currie, the band’s lead crooner, who was caught in an avalanche of fame alongside Joan Jett, Lita Ford, Sandy West and Jackie Fox in the mid-1970s.
As Currie, Fanning will certainly turn heads. Indeed, she is the best thing in the fiery outing.
Early opinion also suggests the film, produced by Jett and directed by Floria Sigismondi, a visual muse behind videos for David Bowie and Christina Aguilera, would have wandered south creatively without her, in fact.
Twilight temptress Kristen Stewart also headlines, stepping into Jett’s shoes. Fanning admits she did not know Currie’s story.
“I knew who Joan Jett was,” she says. “But I hope (the movie) brings Cherie’s story, and the story of the Runaways, to a new generation.”
Fanning says playing Currie was a balancing act: “Cherie is so complex. She goes through such a transformation in this film and in her life,” she says.
“At first, she is the kind of good girl, the innocent twin, less popular in school. She had to break out of that and become The Cherry Bomb – as they say.
“But I had to keep that vulnerability and innocence … because Cherie, today, still has that.”
Fanning and Stewart bonded closely during the film – similar to the real-life relationship of Jett and Currie. In the Twilight saga of films, Fanning plays the role of sadistic Volturi immortal Jane, while Stewart plays Bella, a teenager whose love is torn between vampire Edward (Robert Pattinson) and werewolf Jacob (Taylor Lautner).
“Kristen has become one of my best friends,” Fanning says. “I think when you are that close to somebody … I had this illusion of being ‘false’ towards Kristen, but this experience was so great in that we were completely open toward each other. There were no barriers or walls that we put around ourselves. We were completely there. I think our relationship really translates into the movie.”
Fanning has grown up in the spotlight. But she does not know how audiences will react to this role.
“I think this story is such an important story,” she says.
“I don’t know what other people will think, but for me, it’s so different from anything I have ever done in my whole life.”
That said, Fanning doesn’t spend time analysing what she does after a film wraps.
“Once I am finished making a movie, I kind of leave it there. There’s nothing you can change,” she says.
“When I watch it, I just enjoy it. I mean, I had so much fun watching this movie. It’s me up there but I think of it as another film.”
Indeed, Fanning has perspective.
She is no Hollywood brat.
“I really truly live a normal life. I have such a normal family,” she says.
“So I have a normal life to come home to, and live every day, when I am not on the set.
“And I think that is really important – to keep that home life. I have been doing this since I was very young and it’s all that I really know and that I love. And I would never want to jeopardise what I really love to do.
“I don’t take anything for granted.
“Everything can be taken away so fast.
“I remember that every day and live every day to the fullest.”
The Runaways is released Thursday. [Source]