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Becoming Alice

December 23, 2009 |  9:03 am


Actress Mia Wasikowska tells the L.A. Times that it was "isolating" to take on the role of Alice in the upcoming Tim Burton film "Alice in Wonderland," based on the Lewis Carroll classics. "I was basically planted in this sea of green," the 20 year-old actress said; she shot about 90% of her scenes in front of a green screen to be composited later. She'd find herself talking to a tennis ball or a bit of tape meant to stand in for the Cheshire Cat, the caterpillar and other animated creatures. "I really had to use my imagination."

In a post on Hero Complex, Wasikowska also praises Johnny Depp for being "brave and smart." Some of his choices seemed a bit outlandish at first -- that hair! -- but the more I've seen of the film, the better it looks.

This trailer played before I saw "Avatar" in IMAX 3-D last weekend; it has more narrative focus than the earlier teasers. And all its in-your-face moves are fun in 3-D. If the Cheshire Cat still makes me want to throw popcorn at the screen, the actors gleefully playing in their invented world makes up for it. Except, that is, for Wasikowska -- she seems a bit lost, exactly as Alice should be.

-- Carolyn Kellogg

Photo credit: Walt Disney Co.