A WALK ON THE MOON
About The Production (cont'd)
Another unexpected casting coup came when Oscar winner Anna Paquin accepted the role of Pearl's equally rebellious, and authentically adolescent, daughter Alison
Another unexpected casting coup came when
Oscar winner Anna Paquin accepted the role of Pearl's equally
rebellious, and authentically adolescent, daughter Alison. Lee
Gottsegen explains: "We wanted a teenager who was at the
same point in life as Alison. Anna is clearly one of the most
incredible talents in that age range and she looks the part. We
were even more thrilled when we discovered she is capable of a
flawless American accent."
Tony Goldwyn cites Paquin's "offbeat beauty, incredible smarts
and independent spirit" as being perfectly in line with the
role of Alison. "Anna has the ability to be witty and smart
without being shrill or the stereotypical adolescent brat,"
he says. "We needed someone with a deep intelligence rare
at that age and Anna has it. She allows you to believe in Alison
as a rebel with real convictions."
For Paquin, the role of Alison was a chance to bring a frank realism
to the tumult of female adolescence. "I completely understood
Alison's feelings because teenagers are really the same regardless
of where or when they were born," she comments. The young
actress was particularly impressed by Pamela Gray's carefully
handling of the mother-daughter relationship, especially the way
Gray elucidated Alison's feeling of being trapped between her
mother's unfulfilled dreams and her father's promises of safety.
"I think Alison probably feels closer to her father because
she can't feel threatened by him because he's a guy," she
explains. "At that age, you don't want to be like your mother
but of course Alison and Pearl are going through something very
similar so they have this deeper, more complicated connection."
Another draw for Paquin was the opportunity to explore the American
1960s, a period unlike any she's had a chance to explore in her
young but diverse career. "It was wonderful to play somebody
from a different time but not from the Victorian era!" she
Coming between Alison and Pearl is the irresistible Walker Jerome,
the easygoing hippie who has a devastating effect on the Kantrowitz
family. Despite his role as seducer and home-breaker, Walker Jerome
is a character of many charms and surprises. To capture both Jerome's
sexuality and his subtleties, Viggo Mortensen was always the filmmakers'
"When I first sat down with Viggo, I was basically struck
speechless," admits Goldwyn. "I immediately thought
there's no one else in the world who can play this role. I always
thought Walker would be the most difficult character in the story
to bring to life, he's so much in danger of just being the cliche
hunky guy. But Viggo had that underlying thing going on, that
kind of free-spirit, charismatic rebel quality that Walker Jerome
is all about."
Mortensen felt a passionate connection to the script, but he also
found a very personal link with the character. "There are
certain elements of Walker Jerome that remind me of my stepbrother,"
explains Mortensen. "His spirit was very much like Walker's
and he was on my mind throughout the filming."
Adds Mortensen: "The themes of this story are very universal.
It is a simple and beautiful story with characters that you can
really understand, no matter what kind of background you come
from. Even though there is plenty of blame to go around in this
situation, you really understand why the characters do what they
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