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Cinema Voice

As mentioned below, Closing the Ring is about to hit Japanese theatres and the promotion has begun. Below is an interview with Mischa about the film but she also goes on to talk about different topics. There is a bit in the article that mentions Mischa had a baby, lol. Clearly something went wrong with the translator.

I thought that Ethel Ann is such a lucky woman being loved by 3 nice guys. So as a woman I was kind of jealous of her. At the same time I tried to imagine what I would do if I was in her position. So I thought this is thought provoking movie that made me think about destiny of love and also the friendship among men. Ethel Ann and Teddy thought that they would love each other for life, but if your love one died, you have to break that promise in order to move on to live your own life, but Ethel Ann kept that promise for 50 years and with that she hurt her husband and child for doing that. So, how did you understand her way of life and play this role?

Mischa Barton(M):Well, I mean, I agree with you. It’s a very romantic idea that you love one person for your whole life. I think that till death do as apart has a lot of meaning. Even my grandfather was married until his wife died and you know, he found love again as an older man, so I think you have to be opened in life to ideas. And to new relationships and people so that you grow as a person. But I think it’s a very romantic and loving idea that Ethel Ann loves him so much that she can’ let go. Really she’s traumatized by the war and all that she has to see and experience in a such a young life and she’s a very um…passionate, opened almost nai¨ve person and so she kinds of loves with everything she has and that end up really hurting her. But it’s wonderful notion and I do believe in true love like that, but…like you said I mean it does end up hurting her and she doesn’t benefit from it. But in the film, she finds that closure and you hope that she does end up with Christopher’s character.

Cinema Voice


I thought that Ethel Ann is such a lucky woman being loved by 3 nice guys. So as a woman I was kind of jealous of her. At the same time I tried to imagine what I would do if I was in her position. So I thought this is thought provoking movie that made me think about destiny of love and also the friendship among men. Ethel Ann and Teddy thought that they would love each other for life, but if your love one died, you have to break that promise in order to move on to live your own life, but Ethel Ann kept that promise for 50 years and with that she hurt her husband and child for doing that. So, how did you understand her way of life and play this role?
Mischa Barton(M):Well, I mean, I agree with you. It’s a very romantic idea that you love one person for your whole life. I think that till death do as apart has a lot of meaning. Even my grandfather was married until his wife died and you know, he found love again as an older man, so I think you have to be opened in life to ideas. And to new relationships and people so that you grow as a person. But I think it’s a very romantic and loving idea that Ethel Ann loves him so much that she can’ let go. Really she’s traumatized by the war and all that she has to see and experience in a such a young life and she’s a very um…passionate, opened almost nai¨ve person and so she kinds of loves with everything she has and that end up really hurting her. But it’s wonderful notion and I do believe in true love like that, but…like you said I mean it does end up hurting her and she doesn’t benefit from it. But in the film, she finds that closure and you hope that she does end up with Christopher’s character.

So, you shared with the character with Shirley MacLaine, Did you feel pressure to play a younger version of her…
M:Oh, definitely.

So, did you talk about the character?
M:Yeah, I mean I spoke to both her and Richard about the war, I mean I just wanted, you know, it’s a big thing to live up to play young Shirley so I was concerned about it in the beginning. But really Richard put my worries at ease because the film is a…they are two completely when she’s younger, she’s very different as she is an adult, and while you wanted the characters or the character as a young woman and as a grown woman to marry each other in some ways and that was more in the technicalities of like movements and things like that Ethel would of kept. But the role I was playing was a very loving and nai¨ve and happy passionate girl and the character that Shirley was playing was much more jaded and bitter older lady whose been through a lot and seen a lot so, in that sense, we didn’t have to match each other’s performances.

So did you get any advice from her or director?
M:Um…I got tons of advice from Richard, he was extremely helpful and I mean Shirley’s great. She’s such an amazing woman and she’ go so much spank and she’s really cool and yeah, I really admire her as an woman and as an actress.

So, in this story Ethel Ann who believes in the destiny of love, finds beautiful truth about life, the destiny of love is not necessary once for life, in your career or in your real life, have you ever had meeting or event that you felt that was destiny?
M:Yeah, definitely. I think some people are destined to meet, I think for sure. I think I was destined to meet Richard. He’s an amazing man, and he’s been a such a inspiration to me in my life as an actor. So, I mean I think, yeah definitely. There are people you meet and you just click and it feels like you should of known each other forever.

Would that make you nervous?
M:Yeah. Of course. I mean usually if you come to a festival, you’ve seen the film but because I just had a baby and have come straight from Australia I haven’t had a chance to see it. So, in a way, this film was always made by Steven and George and Harrison from a love of their fans. It communicates directly to the fan base to the audience and in a strange by passes the critics. And I don’t think many films do that.

So, how was experience working with the director?
M:He’s a great person, a great man, and he’s just really great with actors and he’s very much an actor’s director.

Affect your career or… in someway you changed your point of view or by working with him.
M:Surprising he has managed to affect my career. I mean he was very much a hands on director who cares for the actors that he works with. And you know, he wanted read all my script after I did this film with him, he was like…you know, if you go to do another project, please send me a script and I’l read it so, he’ s very um…involved in actors’ lives.

So, you have already appeared on Broadway shows when you were 8 years old so how did you find interest in acting at first?
M:Well, acting kind of came to me, not the other way around. I was at a summer camp and so was my older sister. And I was performing at the end of the camp you perform something in front of a live audience of the parents and the thing that I performed was this monologue that I had written over the summer and one of the other children’s parents was an agent at an agency in New York that was mostly literary agent and did theatre and handled theatre audition. So, the woman approached my mother and said why don’t you send her out to some audition, she’s got great presence on stage, she reads very well and um…that’s how it happened. And I got cast in my first play when I was 8, and that was Tony Kushner play “Slavs!” which I did with Marisa Tomei and then from there I was…I loved it and it was really a great experience for me as a child because I really came out of my shell when I was acting.

So, since you started to act…I’m curious to know how your passion for playing a character has changed?
M:Well, I think it’s so dependent on the roles that you choose to do and the people you work with I mean, whether it’s script or the director I think you just wanna surround yourself with great creative influences and then it keeps you alive, makes you enjoy it, cause it is easy to take it for granted and to like you know become sick of all the stuff that goes along with acting. But those moments that you actually playing a character on film are the moments that you live for.

So, of course, the “OC” is a big hit here in Japan too, so you played Marissa for 3 years, how did these years affect you or your career. Maybe did you encounter any struggle in your acting career, because of the strong image of her?
M:Well, I mean, definitely, I found it very…intense experience put at best. I mean it was just a lot of work for me and I was 16 when I first got cast in the role, so there were very formative years of my life from 16 through 20. At times I look back on it and think it was, it had negative affects on me as an actor but positive at the same time, because you learn from that and you kind of grow and learn to like to develop and movie on. Television is a funny form of acting because you work so hard and so fast and it’s not a whole lot of attentions is paid to the actual acting is to how good the quality of the acting is, so you learn as an actor bad tricks and good tricks. So, you know I think um…I tool a quite a lot of way from the show anyway whether it will be good and bad. But it was a great experience for me and you can only ask for where you have huge fan base and people enjoyed the show so much, I mean that’s all you can ask for.

For now, you are focusing on movie or?
M:For now, I’m focusing on film, maybe I’ll do a play sometime soon, I’m open, I would go back to television, I just rather have more creative control this time around.

So, is there different attraction or is it kind of the same, because you always act even on…
M:Yes, you are always acting after difference circumstances, I mean, it’s really different, different film sets can operate the whole experience is different.

What is your motto, your philosophy to live by?
M:I live everyday like it’s the last. Because I really, I love life, I’m very aware of mortality and what I have and I’m grateful for everything I have.

So you in career, you’ve worked with so many talented people and maybe you have so many experience, so could you share with us one episode that affected your life affected your point of view or career?
M:When I was 11 in my first film premiere in England, in UK. I remember seeing all the photographers and the lights and just what a big deal it was, because I was so young and it was just memorable moment in my life. And uh…yeah, I was a lead in that film with Sam Rockwell, it was actually rate 15, so I couldn’t go see it, I had to like sit outside and wait till the movie was over. But um…it was very memorable and, you know just a great experience cause as a kid, like I said, I was quite shy, so to have something be successful like that or have people appreciate your work was a really great feeling.

That’s nice. So, finally could you face the camera and give a message to WOWOW viwers?
M: Hi, WOWOW viweres! I’m Mischa Barton and this is my film “Closing the Ring”.

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