Thank you to Disney Studios for hosting me during the A Wrinkle In Time
Since The Goldbergs is one of my favorite television shows, I was already familiar with Rowan Blanchard in her role as Jackie. In addition to acting, Rowan is a recently published author and outspoken activist. She can now be seen in the role of Veronica Kiley in Disney’s A Wrinkle In Time.
What was it like playing a mean girl in the film?
It was definitely different for me. I felt like I was doing it in this way where it wouldn’t be minimized to just a very stereotypical mean girl role. I really trusted Ava to make a character that felt complex and more than just a mean girl. I think there’s a lot of layers to Veronica that we get to see throughout the film… There’s a lot of different parts to her that you sort of see as the film unfolds, where she’s more than just the bad girl or the mean girl, which was a relief.
Has she always been fearless in the pursuit of her goals?
It’s not something that is a very conscious thing, where I feel totally empowered and fearless every day. There are some areas that I feel more confident in than others. Going on that [A Wrinkle In Time press conference] panel with Oprah, Reese and Mindy, I felt like the odd one out. But that’s a second where I have to be like, I deserve to be here and I’m here, a part of something bigger than myself. There’s just so many moments on the daily where I have to remind myself that it’s okay that I am in the room.
What was it like to work on her own book?
I made this book called Still Here that just came out about a week and a half ago. It was just really important to me to have these concrete forms of how I view art, which I think is a lot more accessible than how we think of art in a museum or how we think of art as a big painting. I was really always inspired by my friends who kept diaries and whose thoughts were so pure and unfiltered. And being a teenager, and specifically being a teenage girl, it’s just this point where your thoughts are not as informed with the outside world yet and you’re still processing so much yourself that your writing is more unfiltered. So, I made this thing and I had, I think, 20 other contributors that helped me kind of compile this thing that I think is about teenage survival. It’s cool that it’s coming out during the time that this [movie] is. It feels like it’s a really cool time to be a teenager.
Who would she like to work with one day?
I got to work with her. Literally, Ava. But seriously, you guys, her magnitude as a person is so overwhelming. And just the idea that this woman has worked so hard, and still remembers everybody’s name. That was the one thing that I realized so much on working on the same side as her is she knows the entire crew by name, and just being able to follow this woman who’s so loyal to everyone around her, and so giving, and wants to not only succeed but wants to bring people up with her, it was so incredible. I looked to her as so much more than just an inspirational director. She’s just like this incredible person that I’m so grateful to have in my life in so many ways.
What did she learn from working with Ava DuVernay?
It’s so normal to scream at people or to use your voice in ways that are very aggressive in order to get what you want. It’s always sort of inspiring and interesting for me to watch how women directors have to occupy the space that’s been left for them to get the attention and to get the take that they want without being as aggressive because you can’t. You’ll be called a diva or you’ll be called very hard to work with. It’s cool to watch how women occupy that space.
What does she hope young boys and girls leave the theater feeling?
This film marks such an incredible and unique time in history where so many people who have never seen themselves on screen are able to go to a film and see themselves starring in a huge sci-fi movie. That’s massive. I was just looking on Twitter, there’s a lot of organizations led by young teenage black girls to buy movie tickets for a bunch of other young black girls to go see this movie. And just that alone, the fact that people are organizing like this and are so prepared and ready for this thing to come out makes me feel so excited to be even a small part of it.
There’s still more to come from the #WrinkleInTimeEvent! Make sure you follow along with all of the A Wrinkle In Time coverage! A Wrinkle In Time is in theaters now!
From visionary director Ava DuVernay comes Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time,” an epic adventure based on Madeleine L’Engle’s timeless classic which takes audiences across dimensions of time and space, examining the nature of darkness versus light and, ultimately, the triumph of love. Through one girl’s transformative journey led by three celestial guides, we discover that strength comes from embracing one’s individuality and that the best way to triumph over fear is to travel by one’s own light.
Meg Murry is a typical middle school student struggling with issues of self-worth who just wants to fit in. The daughter of two world-renowned physicists, she is intelligent and uniquely gifted, as is Meg’s younger brother, Charles Wallace, but she has yet to realize it for herself. Complicating matters is the mysterious disappearance of Mr. Murry, which has left Meg devastated and her mother broken-hearted. Charles Wallace introduces Meg and her fellow classmate Calvin to three celestial beings (Mrs. Which, Mrs. Whatsit and Mrs. Who) who have journeyed to Earth to help search for their father, and together they embark on their formidable quest. Travelling via a wrinkling of time and space known as tessering, they are transported to worlds beyond their imagination where they must confront a powerful evil force. To make it back home to Earth, Meg must face the darkness within herself in order to harness the strength necessary to defeat the darkness rapidly enveloping the Universe.
Directed by Oscar® nominee Ava DuVernay from a screenplay by Oscar winner Jennifer Lee based upon the beloved novel by Madeleine L’Engle, “A Wrinkle in Time” stars: two-time Academy Award® nominee Oprah Winfrey as Mrs. Which, Oscar winner Reese Witherspoon as Mrs. Whatsit, Emmy® nominee Mindy Kaling as Mrs. Who, Gugu Mbatha-Raw as Mrs. Murry, Michael Peňa as Red and introducing Storm Reid as Meg Murry, with two-time Emmy winner Zach Galifianakis as The Happy Medium and Emmy nominee Chris Pine as Mr. Murry.
Produced by Jim Whitaker and Catherine Hand with Doug Merrifield serving as executive producer, the film also boasts an impressive creative team featuring some of the most talented and skilled craft persons working today, including: Tobias Schliessler, ASC as director of photography, Naomi Shohan as production designer, Oscar®-nominee Spencer Averick as film editor and two-time Academy Award®-nominee Paco Delgado as costume designer.