24 Frames

Movies: Past, present and future

Category: Emma Watson

'Perks of Being a Wallflower' trailer: Teenage angst on grand display

June 4, 2012 | 11:41 am

Stephen Chbosky's debut novel "The Perks of Being a Wallflower" is one of those books that doesn't just breed fans, it inspires devotion. Since MTV published it in 1999, the young-adult novel about a misfit teenager with some dark secrets has touched a generation of readers. Comments from the reader review section on Amazon.com point to a book that "changes you," "is a great friend" and is "incredibly special."

Chbosky, who was a filmmaker before becoming a novelist, has adapted his own novel into a screenplay and directed the movie with an all-star cast led by Logan Lerman as the freshman Charlie, who must start high school after the recent suicide of his best friend. At his side are some misfit older students played by "Harry Potter's" Emma Watson and Ezra Miller ("We Need to Talk About Kevin").

The trailer highlights the relationship between the trio, a group of kids too introspective and insightful to withstand the mundanity of high school. The clip begins with Charlie confessing in voiceover that he hasn't spent a lot of time with anyone apart from his family over the summer, but he's determined to "really turn things around" at his new high school life. Things don't seem to get off to a strong start initially -- with Charlie wondering whether befriending your English teacher really counts as turning things around -- but soon he meets up with Sam (Watson) and Patrick (Miller) and his fortunes change.

The film will bow on Sept. 15 with a PG-13 rating, essential for a movie that speaks directly to teenagers on the brink of adulthood, but that rating didn't come without a fight. The Motion Picture Assn. of America originally deemed the movie R, for "teen alcohol and drug use, and some sexual references" but that was overturned after a passionate appeal from Chbosky and Eric Feig, president of production at Lionsgate Motion Picture Group.

Without having to change a frame the filmmakers were able to convince the appeals board that the more stringent rating was too severe and would turn off the audience the film was intended to reach. Soon, we will find out if those die-hard book fans will check out the film.

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-- Nicole Sperling


Harry Potter's Emma Watson: I've become a better actress playing Hermione [Video]

July 12, 2011 |  7:00 am

One of the joys of the Harry Potter franchise has been the chance to watch performers such as Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint go from novice child actors to experienced adult ones.  At the "Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows -- Part 2" premiere in New York on Monday night, 24 Frames talked to several of these actors and their directors.

Emma Watson said that her own interest in the character of Hermione increased as the series went on.  "As the material got darker, it got more challenging," she said. "When that started happening, I started to take more of an interest." (You can watch the full video of Watson above). She also expressed surprise that fan investment in the series grew as more films were made. "The following just seems to get bigger," she said. "That doesn't really happen with franchises."

Photos: New York premiere of 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - Part 2'

Meanwhile, David Yates, Watson's director on four of those films, said he observed a change in Watson as she grew "more committed to" and "more passionate about" her acting in the time between 2007's "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" to the final film. "Their acting's improved as they've gotten older," he said of the cast. (He also said that Radcliffe's jokes got better.)

As for his own evolution, Yates said he found a huge difference between helming "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince" and "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix" on the one hand and the final two films on the other. "My previous movies ended with commas rather than full stops, and 'Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows' finishes with a really nice, fat full stop," he said

Check out the video from Yates below, with more to come from the series' other stars.

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-- Steven Zeitchik
Twitter.com/ZeitchikLAT

 


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