Friday, February 17, 2017

Bill Condon talks about Emma Watson in L'écran Fantastique - France (February 2017)

Credit Watsonuncensored is you use the translation.
I was listening to music while translating so it might not be the best translation I've ever done XD

We know Dan Stevens had to film his scenes twice, once without costume and once with. We learn here that sometimes Emma and other persons from the cast went to the set to play opposite to him to help him play the scenes again.

Q: It's the first participation of Emma Watson to a musical. How did she prepare herself for singing?
Bill Condon: She totally threw herself into the project and trained a lot. I don't know if you remember, but there used to be a saying in Hollywood that said that a star only becomes a real star once we hear them sing! [laughs]. It has been forgotten since then, but the moment you hear someone sing for the first time is still fascinating. We could say it's almost more revealing and intimate than to take off your clothes in front of a camera. There's something in Emma's voice that perfectly reflects her personality. She has a very clear sound, incredibly pure. And she sings while completely capturing this aspect of her interpretation, and while giving her version of the role. Earlier, I was talking about the very "Broadway" style of the songs of the animated version of 'Beauty and the Beast', which was relying on a powerful, dynamic and theatrical singing. Emma's version is much more intimate and pure. She is one of the most hard-working person I've met, and she is very strict with herself. She already had her talent of actress and a real natural gift as a singer, but she had never trained to sing professionally. She did it with lots of diligence, and she also took dance lessons. With the level she reached now, she could play in a musical in theater.

Q: Did she need encouragements from you during this complicated process?
BC: Yes, of course, because there were lots of things to assimilate to be able to sing and dance while acting in a natural way. She rehearsed her acting and dancing with the help of a playback of her singing voice. Then, during the filming, she was sometimes telling me "Why wouldn't I sing live during this take?" and we did it this way sometimes, but not always. When she was really singing, she was doing it in front of hundreds of people, and all that while moving through the decors, which is really complicated to do.

BC: There is a real similarity between Emma's real life and the person Belle is in the movie. In the 1991 animated version, Belle was already a very modern female character, who clashed with the cliché of the heroin who's only wish is for a prince to come and find her. We could see Belle making lots of efforts to educate herself by reading books, to become a strong and independent woman. We took those characteristics of Belle in our version, but today, she doesn't just read. She wants to teach reading and science to the young girls of the village she lives in. She reached the next level, the one where she shares her knowledge. And there's a moment in the film where we see her think about an invention that would allow women to spend less time doing chores, and would give them more freedom to educate themselves.

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