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Saturday, September 19, 2009

Good girl, bad girl, smart girl


Her growing body of work shows actress is not just another blond.

Sep 18, 2009 04:30 AM
Peter Howell
Movie Critic

Amanda Seyfried doesn't have to worry about typecasting, at least for the moment. She plays polar opposites in her two movies at TIFF, the horror film Jennifer's Body and the erotic drama Chloe.

In Jennifer's Body, opening today, she's a mouse named Needy, the angelic ying to Megan Fox's devilish yang, although it's a stretch that Seyfried could ever really be a wallflower. In Atom Egoyan's Chloe, opening later this fall, Seyfried plays the title hottie, a hooker hired by Julianne Moore's jealous spouse to tempt her husband, played by Liam Neeson.

"It's an actor's dream," says the 23-year-old blond from steeltown Allentown, Penn., who first rose to prominence five years ago as a high school bitch in Mean Girls. "I get to celebrate two completely different movies with two completely different characters."

Q Do you see any parallels between Needy and Chloe?

A Oh, yes. They've both got vulnerable sides, but I think every human being does, unless they're psychotic. And they're both naive. I think they suffer from being in a limited world, especially Chloe.

Q Don't you hate it when hot girls put on glasses to pretend they're homely, the way you do in Jennifer's Body?

A It was so wonderful not being so glamorous! Because most parts you take are the big-boobed, long-legged blond-hair girl and you try to make her look glamorous. It's very easy to be typecast as a young woman with my proportions. But it's way more fun to play the characters that I've got to play in these two movies.

Q How did you manage to escape typecasting so early in your career?

A I have a really good agent who knew from the beginning that she had to be specific and careful with the roles that I chose from Mean Girls on. And a lot of scripts came my way to play dumb blonds that really didn't have much character in teen movies that I ended up not doing, because it would have really been only for money and work. Instead of being desperate I took my time. Then certain roles came and I would audition for something and I'd get it, and it would ... be the perfect movie at the time for me.

Q You also made a big impression playing Meryl Streep's daughter in Mamma Mia!

A That movie put me into a whole different realm. People all over the world know who I am because of that movie, and children all over the world idolize me, and people think I'm marketable.

Q Were you a horror fan prior to making Jennifer's Body?

A I don't enjoy being scared out of my mind. I saw The Haunting In Connecticut, because a friend was in it. I was sitting there and I kind of wanted to leave the theatre ... .

Q Were you familiar with Atom Egoyan's work before Chloe?

A Just that he is one of the most respected indie directors of all time and, of course, he was nominated for The Sweet Hereafter, which I saw right away. I knew he was really smart in a way that would have been intimidating, but I knew the way he edited the movie and the way he filmed it, it would be quite unique. He's a genius.

Q You have a nude scene in Chloe. Your first one?

A Yes. A real nude scene, that is. But then I realized, this guy (Egoyan) knows what he's doing, I trust him more with my life. I know it sounds weird, but he's a remarkable person. And a bit crazy, in the most attractive way.

Q You're on a roll. Any other film genre you want to do?

A I'd like to do a period movie. Not a movie about my period!

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