Saoirse Ronan and Max Irons Open Up About THE HOST And Other Things

saoirse-ronan-max-irons-host-portraits-exclusive-01-fiJustJared got an exclusive interview with two of the actors from The Host, Saoirse Ronan and Max Irons.  They asked them about the movie and filming, but they also got to ask them a few things that had nothing to do with the film, which made for some humorous moments.  Check out more images after the jump. 

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With Saoirse Ronan

JustJared.com:What was your favorite off-screen moment while shooting.
Saoirse Ronan:Max and I went to have dance lessons for the swing dance montage scene that we have. And we went to see this guy, I think his name’s Ralph or Ray, or something like that. And he was just so cool…but he was quite small. And he was a great guy, so we had really fun times doing that.

JJ:Did both of you pick it up at the same time or was one a better dancer than the other?
SR: I was a better dancer! I picked it up before Max did. Max needed to just relax a little bit. And I kept taking the lead, which I always do anyways whenever I dance.

JJ:I thought he said he was a break dancer when he was younger.
SR: Yea, he did this break dance Grease mix tape at a disco when he was like ten years old. He was like ‘Oh yea, I won this dance competition once!’ And we were like ‘Oh my God, when was that and what did you do and stuff?’ ‘I was like ten years old at a camp! I don’t know if anyone else danced’ I wonder if it’s on Youtube!

JJ:Did you have a favorite prop from set?
SR: Favorite prop? The little cryopod things cause they can be used for paper weights as well.

JJ:Did you steal any?
SR: No, but I should have! There was a few of those things that I really wanted to steal and then just didn’t have enough time. But I still want to take one of those. I might find out where they are, but I want to steal it though! You know?

JJ:Can you describe Maxin one word?
SR: English!

JJ: Jake?
SR: Guitar.

JJ: Diane?
SR: Mmm, Diane. Focused. [Laughs] She gets the good one!

JJ:What was the last movie you saw?
SR: The last movie I saw was Frankie and Johnny on the plane. It was great, it was really lovely!

JJ: What was the last song you downloaded?
SR: The last song I downloaded was a song by Daughter called “Human”.

JJ:Were you involved at all with any of the pranks that went on on set with Jake and Max? Did they involve you or prank you?
SR: There was one prank thatJake pulled on Max, obviously, when we found out that Max was afraid of things with wings, so like moths and butterflies and any kinds of insects. So he found this little plastic sort of cockroach thing that we put in his microwave that he would use everyday to heat up his lunch. And just watched the trailer waiting. And eventually he came, like ran out of the trailer freaking out! And the thing is that, I’m always the one who’s the accomplice in the pranks but I’m never the one that comes up with them really. But I get a real kick out of them, so eventually I have to tell the person that we’re playing the prank on that we’ve playing the prank on them cause they get a real kick out of it.

JJ: Is there some interest that people wouldn’t expect you to like? You play serious roles, but there’s a playful side people see very often!
SR: I’m serious sometimes, but most of the time, I’m just like this! I like to surf during the summer, I really like doing that.

JJ: I heard you like viral videos! Do you have a favorite video?
SR: [Laughs] There’s two that I love at the moment. Do you know “Ain’t Nobody Got Time for That”? Sweet Brown? [Imitates video]. She’s like ‘I thought there was a fire!’ And then, this Taylor Swift video. You know that song that she has “I Knew You Were Trouble” and it’s like twenty seconds of her song and it’s right before she goes into the chorus and you know when she hits that high note? Well, they replace it with, it’s actually a sheep, well they replace it with a sheep screaming! You know they make that really weird screaming noise? And they replace it with the sheep! It’s the funniest thing. It’s so funny. So those two videos.

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With Max Irons

JustJared.com: What’s been your favorite off-screen moment of shooting?
MaxIrons: It would be hanging out in New Mexico going hiking. I like to go by myself. I get crazy on set sometimes being surrounded by people, so every once in a while I just have to get out.

JJ: Do you have a favorite prop from set?
MI: No, I didn’t steal any props. Getting to play with the guns was quite fun. But no, I didn’t have many props.

JJ: Did the guns actually shoot anything?
MI: They shot blanks if you wanted them to.

JJ: Describe Diane Kruger in one word.
MI: Stunning. Oh, I can do better than that. Mesmeric.

JJ: Saoirse Ronan?
MI: Effortlessly talented. Two words, I know (laughs).

JJ: Jake Abel?
MI: Kind.

JJ: Did you and Jake play pranks on one another?
MI: He’s a little sh-t. He loves playing pranks. He in fact opens pranks up to the world of Twitter. He decided to tell the world that I’m terrified of insects. We had a book signing the other day with 1,000 people, lots of whom threw plastic insects, or in some cases real insects, onto the table.

JJ: What’s the last movie you saw?
MI: The last movie I saw was Life of Pi. I loved it. I thought it was amazing.

JJ: What’s the last song you downloaded?
MI: Woodkid’s new album. It was amazing. It’s a French guy. He used to direct videos for Katy Perry and write lyrics for Rihanna. He decided to make his own music. He’s f-cking awesome.

JJ: Tell us more about your upcoming TV series.
MI: It’s called The White Queen. It’s about The War of the Roses, which took place in the 15th century, particularly violent period in history and a politically unstable period in history. I play King Edward IV – a bit of a womanizer, a very intelligent guy. And it tracks him and his wife over the course of their final 20 years.

JJ: What’s Tarquin Wong up to?


MI: Tarquin Wong! Where did you get that from (laughs)? He was this kid I went to school with when I was 13. He was a gymnast and a diving champion. I beat him in a dance competition, dancing to the Grease megamix with a combination of swing and break dance. At the time, it felt like my finest hour. When I look back, it makes me uncomfortable.

JJ: Let’s see you break dance!
MI: No (laughs)! I was more flexible in those days. Now, I’m taller and ganglier.

It’s quite funny that Max’s uses the word “kind” to describe his co-star Jake Abel, yet calls him a “little sh-t” in his next answer.

To read the complete interview, go here.

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Jake Abel Talks THE HOST, His Co-Stars, and Things He Likes

jake-abel-the-host-cast-portraits-exclusive-02Here’s an interview with Jake Abel, who plays Ian O’Shea in The Host, that was done exclusively for JustJared.  And check out the cast portrait with him, Max Irons, Saoirse Ronan, and Diane Kruger, after the jump.  

JustJared: What about your favorite prop from set?

JakeAbel: I actually took something from [my character] Ian’s room. He had a really good collection of books. There was a Rudyard Kipling book, “The Jungle,” was in it and a couple other short stories. It was all beat up and really old. I think it was published in the 70s. I have a tattoo of a Rudyard Kipling poem “If,” so I’m a big fan and that was my steal from the set.

JJ: What do you like most about your co-star Max Irons?

JA: Max has become one of my closest friends actually. I trust him tremendously. We’ve done a lot of interviews together and when one starts to falter, we pick the other one up. I feel safe around Max (laughs).

JJ: What about Saoirse Ronan?

JA: Saoirse is great. She’s a pleasure to work with. She’s disarmingly talented in front of the camera as much so as behind it when she just turns it off and becomes a kid again. She’s just a joy to be around. She’s got a great energy about her.

JJ: Describe your co-stars in one word. First – Max?

JA: Fun.

JJ: Saoirse?

JA: Adorable.

JJ: Diane Kruger?

JA: Badass.

JJ: We hear you play guitar. What’s your go-to serenade song?

JA: Obviously, “Save Tonight” by Eagle-Eye Cherry. That’s the clincher (laughs).

JJ: We also hear you play pranks on Max. What’s the best prank you’ve pulled on him?

JA: Well, he made the mistake of informing me that he has a fear of bugs. One day, he knocked on my trailer because there was something in his trash can and I went to save him from it, and it was a moth. So I tweeted that day, I had a bunch of people bring fake bugs to our book signing at The Grove. When he wasn’t looking, I put one on his shoulder. It was there for a minute and when he moved, it fell in his lap. He was like, “Ah!”

JJ: Do you have an unexpected question for us to ask Max?

JA: Ask Max what Tarquin Wong is up to these days! And then make him tell you the story. He’ll know what’s up (laughs).

JJ: Last movie you saw?

JA: I think it was The Place Beyond the Pines, the Ryan Gosling movie.

JJ: Do you watch TV or more film?

JA: Film more. If I watch TV, I tend to watch Parks and Rec, really solid comedies.

JJ: What was the last song you downloaded?

JA: Langhorne Slim’s album, which is a guy out of Pennsylvania. I bought him and Alt-J, this band out of England. Those are the two albums I bought last.

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Read the complete interivew at Just Jared.

REVIEW: THE HOST (movie), Starring Saoirse Ronan, Max Irons, and Jake Abel

thehosttrio-fiOverall, I enjoyed the movie, although I have to admit there were a few unsteady scenes where the acting felt a bit off, but not laughable, as some scenes in another of Stephenie Meyer‘s previous book-to-movie adaptations.  The acting is strong in lead Saoirse Ronan, and the story is unique and dramatic and heartfelt.

I thoroughly enjoyed Saoirse’s ability to play two different characters in one body and keep them separate. She is a wonderful actor, and her chemistry with both Max Irons and Jake Abel was lovely. The supporting actors, William Hurt especially, did more than adequately enough to bring to life their characters.  In fact, William Hurt’s presence in the film really brought some scenes to a much more mature and emotionally charged level that only years of acting experience could bring.  What’s amazing is that sometimes Saoirse can match him in that depth level as well when she’s acting with him in a scene.

My main concern with the movie is that because the book was so detailed and so large in volume, having to remove certain parts to make the movie a reasonable time sacrificed a bit of the, shall I say, soul of the story. I would hate to blame that on the writing and directing, given that I do appreciate Andrew Niccol‘s efforts to bring the book to life on the screen, but I don’t know if I can fault the movie of anything else.  With that said, those who haven’t read the books, especially the male viewers, would probably appreciate it more considering that the book itself does not have a lot of action in it, where as the movie does add some level of it.  It’s not G.I. Joe or anything, but it’s a decent sci-fi/drama/romance.

Having read the book, I felt that at times it seemed a bit choppy, not as cohesive as I would like it to be, but as I stated, to make the film an acceptable 2 hours or thereabouts, the nuanced details that make the story flow in the book would only make it drag in a movie, so maybe those who haven’t read the book might think differently and actually will not find it that way. I hope so.  As for how the characters look in comparison to their description in the book, the only thing that needed to stay was the souls’ eyes and how they are different.  Aside from that, as with many book-to-movie adaptation, the appearance of a character is not essential for the essence of the story.  Sometimes they are, but I don’t believe so in this case.  I have been able to easily accept all the actors for the characters they play even if they may look nothing like the character described in the book.  That’s where the actor takes over, having to convey the character and make the viewer see and understand the character.

Plus, I’m not one who’ll berate or disapprove of a movie because the person playing the character isn’t what imagined them to be, as we all have varied concepts in our head.

In conclusion, I feel that this movie stayed pretty true to the essence of the story, giving us an understanding of the souls that have taken over and the humans that fight, as well as Wanderer’s journey of human emotions and Melanie’s ability to stay strong.  None of that is completely lost, and I feel it is good enough to warrant a sequel, and it hints at promoting one as well.

My rating: B- or 7 out of 10 stars.

Director of THE HOST, Andrew Niccol, Explains A Change Made in the Film

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Andrew Niccol, the director of The Host, spoke a little about Saoirse Ronan and finding the right chemistry between her and her two male leads.  

“There’s one thing I always think about movies,” says Niccol, “you can change the anatomy of a movie — you can change its skeleton and move scenes around and take scenes out — but you cannot fix the chemistry. If you do not have chemistry between actors, then you’re dead.”

Niccol admits that it was an “extensive process to find electricity,” but he found it in British actor (and son of the legendary Jeremy Irons), Max Irons.

“I remember Paul — Saoirse’s dad — was with me in the casting session with Saoirse and Max,” Niccol recalls. “He’s an actor as well, and I looked at him and he looked at me and went ‘Yeah…’ cause you could just feel it — something that’s not tangible, but you know it when you see it.”

Audiences have apparently felt that electricity as well, as Niccol admits to altering one particular scene due to fan reaction.

“What I’ve noticed with Stephenie Meyer movies, especially when it’s a packed house, there’s such audible reactions — shrieks — that I’ve actually had to expand scenes,” Niccol explains. “When Jake [Abel]’s character says ‘Kiss her’ to Max’s character, there’s such a big shriek that I actually added frames to the reaction so you could hear the next line of dialogue.”

I find it funny that the people behind the film actually accommodated for when the fangirls start squeeing.  

Some may find that too much has changed, but here’s one reason why Andrew changed the outcome of a couple of the characters, which makes sense. 

In one memorable scene, which finds humans sacrificing themselves to save their brothers and sisters, Niccol veered away from Meyer’s original story. “I did it in a more dramatic way so that guys would show up to the movie,” Niccol says with a laugh. “Of course it’s an alien love story, but there’s enough action that it’s OK guys, you can go to the movie. It’s going to be OK.”

Obviously, they wanted a movie that would appeal to both the females and the males, and that’s one thing as a filmmaker that you really have to adjust for.  The movie opens tonight for most of you, so I hope you go and check it out! 

via TheHollywoodReporter.

Moviegoers Ask THE HOST Cast Questions

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Here’s a fun video of Regal moviegoers who have come up with some interesting questions for the cast of the The Host, Jake Abel, Max Irons, Saoirse Ronan, and Diane Kruger, and the author, Stephenie Meyer

THE HOST Q&A with MTV

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If you missed the Google Hangout with The Host cast (Saoirse Ronan, Max Irons, Jake Abel, Diane Kruger), author Stephenie Meyer, and Josh Horowitz of MTV, you can watch it below:

00:40 – “What’s the feeling right now?”

01:14 – “What did you learn from the press tour?  Did you learn anything new about each other, in the course of traveling the globe?”

02:00 – “What do you notice in the way that [Stephenie Meyer fans] approach you that’s different than a fan of your other work?”

02:40 – For Saoirse, “What was the most exciting challenge of a role like this, or roles like this?  What was the selling point to signing onto this?”

03:40 – For Max, “Was that difficult to, the first day on set, be where you had to be with Saoirse and have that kind of backstory of this past love affair and have that realized on the first day?”

04:31 – For Jake, “Is there any rivalry whatsoever with Max?”

05:53 – “Were there any difficulties when it came to the stunts?”

07:02 – “What was the hardest scene to shoot?”

07:38 – “How difficult was [wearing the contacts]?”

08:12 – Regarding the look of the alien world, “Was that kind of design scheme in place before you signed on?”

09:02 – “Who is your favorite character from the book?”

09:39 – For Saoirse, “Do you get a little stir crazy? Do you get a little schizophrenic talking to yourself in a way?”

10:58 – For Saoirse, “Who’s a better kisser? Jake or Max?”

12:15 – For Max, “How difficult was it for you to hide your British accent?”

12:45 – For Saoirse, “Accents come to you pretty easily.  Is it fun and easy and rewarding for you take on different accents?”

14:22 – “If The Host had a sequel, would you want to be part of it again?”

15:10 – “What separated The Host from the other things you’ve worked on in the past?”

16:01 – “Do you think any of you would survive the invasion?”

16:34 – “Who do you think is least well-equipped for when the crap hits the fan?”

18:00 – “What’s your favorite thing about your character?”

19:07 – For Saoirse, “Do you have a preference between the one woman and one soul that you get to play? Do you enjoy playing Wanda more than Melanie, or vice versa?”

20:00 – For Stephenie, regarding the cave scene, “Was that something, at the end of the day, when you see this on the big screen, is that kind of a ‘pinch me’ moment, the goosebumps that you feel as a writer, seeing your work realized on the screen? What are a couple of moments?”

20:57 – “In this story, do you guys empathize with the souls or the humans, or can you empathize with both?”

22:25 – For Jake, “In the past you’ve acted mostly as the villain.  How does it feel to act as the good guy?”

23:01 – “What’s your favorite song at the moment?”

23:35 – For Saoirse, “Honestly, who’s better at playing the guitar? Jake or Max?”

24:31 – “What are the challenges for young thespians that want to kiss in the rain?”

25:28 – “Is Max a good dancer?”

26:40 – “What do you guys do with your downtime on set?”

27:07 – “We know that Max’s favorite sci-fi film is ‘2001.’  Does [Max] or others have a favorite movie musical?”

27:50 – For Jake, “How did you feel in having to strangle Saoirse?”

28:18 – “What kind of made you step back and go, ‘Wow, I’m part of something a little crazy and awesome?'”

28:49 – For Jake and Max, “Do you have a celebrity crush?”

29:21 – For Stephenie, regarding the sequel, “Where are you at? Are you going to give us any hints about what we can expect in the next one? Are we going to see all these folks…”

29:49 – “What do they think of the cave clothes versus the soul clothes?”

30:35 – Regarding the premiere and watching yourself in the movie, “What do you think about when you’re watching yourself, when you saw the finished film for the first time? Are you the kind of actors that can separate yourself from it, or do you nitpick every little part?”

32:25 – Tweeted from Jake, for Max, “Can Max sing some Beiber, please?”

 

Saoirse Ronan Talks More On THE HOST, Getting Slapped, And Wearing Colored Contacts

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Saoirse Ronan

In another recent interview with Saoirse Ronan, she gets to explain more about playing the two characters in one body, kissing Max Irons and Jake Abel (again), getting both fake and real slapped, and wearing colored contact lenses to get Wanderer’s eyes.  

Moviefone: What’s the hardest thing about playing two characters in one body?

Ronan: One of the toughest things is there’s a lot of tension and conflict between the two but they still need to have this relationship and this interaction. So you need to make sure that that comes across on the screen. There were some scenes where Melanie and Wanda have dialogue just between the two of them, which is straightforward enough. But when there’s other people involved, or Wanda’s ignoring Melanie or has to react to her for certain lines, you have to kind of map out where that comes in and how you want to go about it. That was the real hurdle that we came across.

How did you keep the characters straight in your head?

For the majority of the film, I’m just Wanda, but every now and again, Melanie’s will is so strong that she takes over. I think once or twice I may have done a Louisiana accent instead of the general American accent [that Wanda uses]. But it was pretty clear when it was Wanda and when it was Melanie.

You actually knew both Max and Jake before this.

Yeah, I worked with Jake very briefly on “The Lovely Bones.”

He told me you didn’t recognize him when he came in to audition for this.

No, I didn’t recognize him, because he was quite a bit younger and he had longer hair in “Lovely Bones.” He’s a man now. And he’s engaged! He’s all grown-up. Max I had met a few years ago in this weird audition that we were both doing and had a bit of a laugh together. I knew everything was going to be fine with these guys. I know they’re not pretentious or anything like that, which I can’t stand. So yeah, it worked out really well.

Did you get any say in hiring them?

Yeah, I did actually, and it was really nice to be involved in that. They could have cast someone who I didn’t get on with at all. So it was nice that they called me in to do it. And it just felt right with both of them. It was kind of the obvious choice when they both came in. I didn’t want two guys to be cast solely based on their looks. I was worried that that would happen and luckily it didn’t. It was very important for me to know that they were going to cast someone because they were good actors, and they did.

You have a scene where you kiss first Jake and then Max. Tough day to film?

It was a funny day. I was the butt of so many jokes. Just jumpin’ from one guy to the next, it was mad. Those scenes where someone would get slapped at the end of the scene or someone got bitten or kicked, it was so funny.

So were you bruised at the end of that?

[Mock dramatically] Emotionally.

The scene where Jared slaps Wanda, did he actually connect with you?

Oh, no, no, no, no, no. He just goes like that [mimes a slap] and I react and fall on a rock. But we just found it funny that they hit me so much in that film.

Frances Fisher [who plays another human rebel] slaps you too.

Frances actually hit me by accident and it bloody hurt as well. I had a few slaps.

Jake was also telling me that for his audition scene, you only kissed on the cheek instead of the full kiss you see in the movie.

Yeah, it’s fine when you’re on set and you know someone, but that is so awkward when you’re in an audition with someone to have to kiss them. Andrew was great because he said, “You don’t do the audition kiss, just come really close and breathe” and that’s what we did. It was just as intense.

You had to wear contacts for the film. How hard was that? Max told me he hated the ones in “Red Riding Hood” so much that he actually passed out.

Oh my god. It wasn’t that bad. My eyes are very sensitive anyway and I’m a bit of a flincher, so I was really worried that I wouldn’t be able to wear these things because they’d be so uncomfortable. And they were for the first while, but then I got over it and it was fine. But a lot of eye drops, even when I wasn’t shooting in the desert, you still needed so many drops per day because they just dry your eyes out.

via movifone.

Saoirse Ronan On THE HOST and the Difference Between Melanie and Wanderer

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Collider had a recent interview with Saoirse Ronan about The Host, and although I can’t embed the video here, I’ve posted a transcript of what she said regarding the movie:

On being compared to Melanie or Wanderer:

I’m definitely leaning more towards Melanie than Wanda. I’m maybe not quite as feisty as her, but I think I can be pretty feisty when I want to be.  Yeah.

On making the distinction between Melanie and Wanderer:

With Melanie, she’s very feisty, she’s very much a fighter, and Wanda is the perfect being and is very understanding and positive about everything and all that kind of stuff.  So there was a very clear division between these two characters emotionally and attitude-wise and all that kind of stuff.  With the voice, it was just Melanie, and we went into the sound studio before we started shooting and recorded all over her v.o. (voiceover) and she’s still just as feisty as she was when she was in control of her own body if not more so cause she’s trying to get it back.  We did all that and it was great because I could just react to all that stuff.

On Max Irons and Jake Abel

I did work with Jake before.  He was in The Lovely Bones, and we had one scene together.  It was lovely when I heard he was coming into read for it, because he’s lovely and he did a great audition as well so I was chuffed.  And I had met Max a few years before that as well, so it was nice to know that I knew who these guys were, I knew what they were about, you know.  We were all comfortable with each other.  It was great.

You can watch the video at Collider where she also talks very briefly about her other upcoming films, The Grand Budapest Hotel and How to Catch a Monster.

MTV to Host a Hangout with the Cast of THE HOST and Author Stephenie Meyer

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This Wednesday, guys!  If you missed the first The Host Google Plus hangout, here’s your chance to get in on this one, and hopefully Saoirse Ronan won’t be running late this time.  The cast of The Host (Saoirse Ronan, Max Irons, Jake Abel, and Diane Kruger), along with author Stephenie Meyer, will be hanging out with MTV’s Josh Horowitz to answer your questions about the movie.  Here’s the info on how to get your questions to them:

The group’s invading the internet on Wednesday, March 27 at 4 p.m. ET, to talk all about their alien invasion flick, and we need your questions! Want to know how Saoirse juggled two dreamy dudes? Wondering how Max would handle an alien invasion? Curious as to what Stephenie’s working on now? Tweet your queries using the hash tag #TheHostLive, and be sure to check back in with Hollywood Crush on Wednesday to be part of our Google Plus Hangout with the cast and author of “The Host”!

via HollywoodCrush.

Video Interviews from THE HOST Premiere in Los Angeles

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Thanks to Page to Premiere for being at The Host premiere at the Arclight Theaters in Los Angeles, CA last week.  

Saoirse Ronan (Melanie Stryder) on a separate project with Ryan Gosling and her favorite days on set of The Host. 

Lee Hardee (Aaron) on auditioning, the experience of being in the movie, and an upcoming project.

Stephenie Meyer on working on the sequel, on cars, and on writing from a male perspective.

Jake Abel (Ian O’Shea) on differences between book Ian and movie Ian, on Imagine Dragons visit, and what he wants for Ian in the future.