Quantcast Mia Farrow interview - THE OMEN, ROSEMARY'S BABY

Mia Farrow!!!
Icons Of Fright got to sit down with actress Mia Farrow!!! Rosemary herself from Roman Polanski's classic 'ROSEMARY'S BABY'. Now, she's back with another genre contribution, none other then Mrs. Baylock in 'THE OMEN' update with Liev Schreiber & Julia Stiles. Read on to hear about her experiences on 'THE OMEN'! - by Robg. 6/06

Hello, Mia. You look fantastic, by the way!

Oh, why thank you! It’s the end of the day though! (laughs)

Do you remember seeing the original ‘OMEN’? What kind of impact did that film have on you?

Not much of an impact really. I remember Billie Whitelaw, I had seen her in some Becket plays. So for an actor of my generation, she was sort of iconic. She was like the original portrayer of Beckett plays in England. I remember being really scared by her performance.
Did you re-watch the original before working on this remake?

No, I didn’t. But I asked John (Moore) “Why me?” I loved Billie Whitelaw’s performance and I loved to be scared by her! She was awesome in that original movie. And he said, great as she was, he didn’t want this character showing her hand, so early in the movie. Who would hire a nanny like that? (laughs) Let alone keep her on the payroll! So, my job, when I come in, is to convince the couple and the audience that I’m no threat!

You come into the film as a comforting character, but of course later on in the film, you start to play it with such sinister glee. Was it fun to go from those two extremes with your character?

Really fun! The first scene I shot for the movie was out in the rain with the croquet mallet. (laughs) And after that, it was a real ice-breaker. It was like “Hi. Everyone. How are you doing. Oh, this is my mallet? And this is the car? Ok!” And after that I couldn’t embarrass myself further so it was completely liberating starting out with that scene.

I happened to just see ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ recently, and now seeing these 2 films, it’s kind of eerie in a way. I mean, they are different films, but your character at the end of that film see’s the baby and seems to be OK with the devil baby. So, when you were acting in this film, did you ever think back to Rosemary?

Not until I came to this press junket! (laughs) I didn’t realize it was close. I was doing a play with Julia right before this film, and I got the call. And I thought that Julia had mentioned me. And for all I know, maybe she did. And then John said “I want you to do this” and “I want someone who’s angelic.” And then he mentioned Liev, and I think Liev is the Laurence Olivier of today! I was so focused on this play we were about to open, which was James Lapine; Pulitzer prize winning James Lapine. Very demanding roles for all of us. So, I wasn’t thinking at all of ‘Rosemary’s Baby’. I mean, whole decades go by that I don’t think of it. So, I didn’t think of it at all! It was more like “Oh, cool. I’ll go to Prague! And Julia will be there. And I can’t wait to meet Liev! Awesome!” I brought two of my son’s with me and Prague was just an adventure. Then, I get here and everyone’s asking “Are you the queen of the horror movies?” (laughs)

It’s just kind of weird! It’s almost as if that character in ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ has grown up a little bit and become a nanny! Maybe I’m straining to make some sort of connection.

Well, I respect that! Rosemary was a victim. And this person is not. It was very different in coming to this role. I will say though, what IS similar is the idea, the personification of evil. And maybe ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ was one of the first to have this notion of “the anti-Christ”. Being born to a woman. I just hope this is a good, scary movie. But the idea as a parent, and a grandmother, I think it’s valuable to think of evil, not the way as I was taught, but as an influence. I was brought up a Catholic, and evil was the devil. A little character that sat on your shoulder and told you bad things. And you had the angel on the other side whispering “No, don’t take that cookie!” And that’s what the devil was. I think the duel nature of human kind is everywhere.

I think it more valuable to think evil as not as this little devil on your shoulder, but that the enemy is within. I’m in favor of genocide education. I have 7 sons. Most of the aggression on this planet is coming from men, victimizing woman and girls. I’m going to the darker region of Sedan on the 7th of this month. (June)

I tried to bring up all my children to be aware that this is a human component. It’s within all of us the capacity for terrible things. And it’s about the decisions we make and it’s about the responsibility within out family, within our society, within the human family. Ultimately, my personal feeling is just some higher order, and that we are accountable. It isn’t so far fetched to show an angelic looking child as the personification of evil. Not totally. There’s the duel nature. It’s misleading to think of evil as something else.

You mentioned before that you were working on stage with Julia (Stiles) prior to ‘THE OMEN’. Did either of you have anything to do with the other getting cast, or was it just coincidence?

I’d have to ask Julia. I think I’ve asked her before and she’s said “No.” But what a coincidence! She was already cast when I came on board.

How was it working with her on a film as opposed to stage?

I love her so much! I played her mom (on the play) and we had a great time. And then we ended on a Sunday night and then Tuesday I’m in Prague up to no good! (laughs)

You played her mom, and then you tried to kill her in the next movie!

Yea! A few days later. I’ve gotten so fond of her and she’s become practically a family member. She and my son Ronin are really close. And I care very deeply about her and her boyfriend. It always great working with her.

You spent a lot of time with Seamus (Davey-Fitzpatrick), who played Damien. What was it like to work with a child actor, while the content of the film itself was rather dark material?

He was flying paper airplanes in the hall way and his best buddy was his stand in, who’d sometimes substitute for when they’re be shots of the back of him. He was a little boy of identical proportions to Seamus. And by the end of the movie, Seamus could speak fluent Chez, and because of his little best friend who was his stand in. They’d always be intensely into their games, so I don’t think Seamus knew anything about what was going on IN the movie. He was just so cute and so much fun. And so smart. I loved him and he has wonderful parents too. Maybe in 10 years, he’ll understand the movie. (laughs)

He’s just a regular kid, with a lot of energy and he’s super smart. I doubt he’ll become an actor. I couldn’t see him following with acting considering how smart he was. I worked with Freddie Highmore this year (of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Finding Neverland) on ‘Arthur and the Minimoys’. Brilliant actor! But little Seamus is still just a kid. A great kid.

Can you tell us a bit more about ‘Arthur and the Minimoys’?

Well, it’s a new film by Luc Besson. So, I knew it was going to be really good, and he said there’s going to be two sequels to it. So, that’d be nice! (laughs) I play Freddie’s grandmother, and we’re a poverty stricken family that live on a farm land with a lot of creatures living underneath the house. Luc Besson has written 5 books about ‘Arthur and the Minimoys’ but condensed them for 3 films. He’s got all these great characters for the voices of the creatures such as Madonna, and Snoop Dogg, and David Bowie. I think it’s going to be really great.

I love Bowie! Big fan!

I’m a big Luc Besson fan. And a big Freddie fan now. Or Fred as he prefers. (laughs) That’s how he signs his emails anyways.

Did you get to work with Madonna or any of those other cast members you mentioned?

No. But I did work with Madonna on a movie called ‘Shadows And Fog’ which is a Woody Allen movie. I didn’t see her this time. The rest of them had already recorded their voice over work.

Can you tell us a little bit about ‘Fast Track’?

Yea. That one’s with Zach Braff and Jason Bateman. I haven’t seen it yet. It should be a really funny movie. I love Zach. Great guy. Can’t wait to work with him as a director. I loved ‘ Garden State’.

Not for nothing… but that damn dog in the movie scared me! Can you tell us about working with the dog?

Me too! Fortunately I had minimal work to do with the dog. I thought it was disgusting! (laughs) I mean, I love dogs, I have 4 of them.

But this was a SCARY dog! (laughs)

Please! My dogs are like mixed poodles, but these dogs you don’t want anywhere near you. They’re so disgusting because they’re always slobbering all the time. They had one scene, which I’m not sure if it’s in the movie, but I’m supposed to feed it something and it started lunging at me. There was one dog, I heard that you apparently couldn’t go anywhere near. I saw him locked up and a trainer always present.

THAT’S comforting!

And I know that John Moore worked with that dog, and I think Liev got bitten?

Director John Moore seems to have a passion for this particular film, can you tell us about working with him on ‘THE OMEN’?

I think he’s just a really passionate guy anyway. And he’s a fellow Irishman, so we clicked right away on that level. Well, when you’d do a scene and he liked it, he’d be behind the monitor screaming “Yes!” He’s just such an enthusiast. He’s just passionate about what’s going on in the world, and the political situations. And he’s a visionary. You've got to love him.

Thanks to Dave Bourgeois, Dave Basner & Chris Steible for fielding questions.
Visit: www.HeedTheOmen.com

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