Ellen Page on the red carpet for the Los Angeles
premiere of "Whip It."Photo: Lester Cohen/WireImage.Com,
Courtesy of The Intersection of Entertainment PR, from Mirror Archives
A Moment With Ellen
By Beverly Cohn
orn in Nova Scotia, Halifax, Ellen Page's breakout role was in "Hard
Candy," a story about a young woman who entraps a pedophile and
the physical and psychological damage she inflicts upon him. Her performance
was spellbinding as was her subsequent performance in "Juno"
as the conflicted pregnant young lady for which she won the Independent
Spirit Award in the Best Female category. She had a major role in "Inception"
and currently co-stars in James Gunn's dark comedy "SUPER"
as Libby, a sociopath who works in a comic book store. Through her relationship
with Rainn Wilson's Frank, who becomes The Crimson Bolt superhero, she
transforms herself into a violent superhero named Boltie, and together
they try to rid the city streets of offenders. The film also co-stars
Liv Tyler as Wilson's drug addict ex-wife, and Kevin Bacon, as a bad
guy drug dealer.
The following interview, edited for print purposes,
originally appeared in April 1st edition of the Santa Monica Mirror
and is being reprinted as a courtesy of that publication.
Ellen Page as Boltie, a dubious super hero.
Photo: Courtesy of IFC Films
The part of Libby/Boltie
is different from your other roles. Did it take you out of your comfort
Page: I suppose, but that's why I loved doing it so
much and that's why I'm an actor. I just have to forget about me in
those moments where I'm feeling insecure or questioning myself. You
have to put ego aside and not care about making a total fool of yourself.
I actually love losing me and getting rid of this thing. (pointing
to her body)
How did you manage those physical action scenes?
Page: I just showed up, drank some green tea, and did
my best. After all, that's who Boltie is and you do what you need to
do as the character.
What stood out in your collaboration with the
director, James Gunn?
Page: The amazing thing about James is that he wrote
a great script and created a character for a young woman that I got
very excited about. A character like Boltie is few and far between as
there aren't that many interesting roles for young women. Working with
him was an absolute pleasure and I think what's so great about him is
that he's open and collaborative, but he's also really sure of himself
and I trusted him totally. I was able to just go for it and knew that
he would either tone down my performance or let it go further.
Boltie the crime fighter. Photo:
Courtesy of IFC Films
You recently made Inception, which was a really
high budget film vs. Super, which is a low-budget film. Do you have
Page: Despite these two films being at the opposite
ends of the budget spectrum, they were both totally awesome experiences.
Inception took five months to shoot and despite the vastness of the
film, Chris Nolan, (director) whom I think is a genius, created
a feeling of intimacy and being grounded. He's completely present and
there's no ego. All of his stunts and sequences are tangible and you're
actually a part of them so you're really flipping upside down in a van
or hung upside down by wires in an elevator to create his vision. I
love all that stuff. It was a real pleasure to work with him and the
rest of the cast, including Leonardo DiCaprio and Joseph Gordon-Levitt.
The whole experience was an actor's dream.
The same goes for Super but in a totally different
way because I enjoy low-budget films that are shot super quick. I'm
sure it's much harder when you're the director and have 500 things to
take care of. I'm just an actor and I kind of pop in and do my thing.
I really enjoy flying by the seat of my pants, and especially for a
character like Libby, you kind of have this kinetic energy because you're
moving so quickly. I'm actually accustomed to this because I've been
working in Canada since I was ten where no one had money for anything.
Boltie on the attack against people who key
cars or cut into lines. Photo: Courtesy of IFC
Do you see SUPER as pure entertainment or is there
a message for the audience?
Page: I think it's definitely a film that will polarize
people and a film that is very much open to interpretation in regard
to the questions it poses, whether it's ethics or religion or just morality
in general. I like films that ask questions and I also think it's a
movie where you can just go and have a blast. It's kind of both, which
is what makes it interesting.
What was the most challenging scene?
The intimate scene with Rainn Wilson whose character
is The Crimson Bolt because it's absolutely unlike anything I've ever
done before. I've done quite a few sex scenes for my age and I've also
been in scenes that involved rape, but I've always been the victim and
it's pretty easy for us to connect to the victim because we all know
what fear feels like. But even though it was hard to wrap my head around
being this little sexual predator, who could take on a dude who's six
feet tall and force a sexual act, ultimately it was enjoyable.
What's your social life like and what do you do
for fun? Do you still roller skate?
Page: I still roller skate a lot with my good friend
KPCC's Alex Cohen who trained me for "Whip It" and played
Axles of Evil in the film. My social life? Wow! I don't have much of
a social life and don't go out much. I'm kind of boring. I like to spend
a lot of time outside and hike.
Boltie with her superhero, The Crimson Bolt, played
by Rainn Wilson.
Photo: Courtesy of IFC Films
Do you think people would find that surprising?
Page: I don't know why they would because I don't get
my picture taken very much.
Is that on purpose or an accident?
Page: (Tongue-in-cheek) Oh no. I try really hard
to get my picture taken all the time that's why I'm always flashing
my nipple. (Laughter) I'm just who I am and I think because of
media exposure, people think that actors are something they're not.
I'm just a dork who's pretty boring.
You're anything but boring on screen and it's
always a pleasure to see you perform.