Julianne Moore corners the market on bad movie moms
BY CINDY PEARLMAN May 22, 2013 11:38PM
Opening Ceremony And 'The Great Gatsby' Premiere - The 66th Annual Cannes Film Festival
Updated: June 24, 2013 12:38PM
Julianne Moore is having one of those mom days. Gone are the moments when her kids were tiny and amused easily. “My son is six feet tall and still growing. It’s really crazy,” she says of son Cal, 15. “My daughter Liv is in middle school. The drama of that age can drive you nuts.”
Motherhood is on the 52-year-old redhead’s mind these days. She doesn’t exactly play mother of the year in “What Maisie Knew” (opening Friday), a drama where she’s a rocker who doesn’t have time for her young daughter, but still engages in a nasty custody battle to spite her ex husband.
She enters into mother from hell territory this fall in the Kimberly Peirce “Carrie” remake where she plays demented Margaret White, parental unit of poor Carrie (Chloe Grace Moretz).
Q: As a mother of two was it hard for you to neglect a child in “What Maisie Knew”?
A: It was tough and equally hard to watch people anywhere who aren’t really taking good care of their kids. Kids are powerless, which is the toughest part of being a child. You must depend on other people to take care of you. In this movie, you have a little girl who is not getting that care.
Q: Does this kind of self-absorbed mom role make you want to hug your kids tighter?
A: My daughter made a joke while we were in production. One day she said to me, ‘Mom, are you still playing that horrible mother?’ The great part about it is we shot the movie next door to my house. So my own daughter came and hung out. … Hopefully because I am a parent, I know the rules of good parenting. What’s so dangerous about this woman I play in “Maisie” is that she’s inconsistent, which really disturbed me. This women would smother her daughter with love, affection, toys and clothes and then would be emotionally absent or yell at the poor little girl.
Q: Is it tough to yell at the cute little girl playing your screen daughter? Do you feel bad about it?
A: It’s so hard. I would say to her, “We’re doing some pretend right now and I might yell. But remember, it’s just pretend. Even if I cry, it’s still pretend.” After we cut, she would say, “I’m glad you’re not that sad in real life.” The key is talk about everything with kids.
Q: What can you tell us about the “Carrie” remake?
A: We had a great time making the film. I can tell you that Peirce is a terrific talent. It was a very challenging piece to do because it’s an absolutely iconic film. Nobody will ever be better in that film than Sissy [Spacek] and Piper [Laurie] as her mother. We’re actually looking at it as less about being a remake than a new “Carrie” for now. The original film was a long time ago. I mean, I saw it as a teenager. Of course, I loved it. When that hand came out of the grave, I was absolutely freaked out.
Q: A lot of kids are about to graduate next month. Any life advice for them?
A: All I can say is try to do something in life that makes you happy. I’d also tell them that age brings clarity and hard work still pays off. Basically, you don’t know that at age 18. You walk around thinking some people just get lucky and their lives fall into place. I’m here to say that persistence and hard work is the key to everything.
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