I was invited to a Press Junket in New York by Sony Pictures.
Annie is one of my favorite childhood movies and Sony did a great job re-creating it in a modern way. This interview comes from Marybeth Hamilton, who shared part of the interview with me. I missed the press junket due to the flu but I couldn’t let my readers miss out on such a great opportunity from such a fun family film. The link to the full interview is below.
Cameron Diaz plays the role of Miss Hannigan, a cruel control freak of the foster home where Annie lives with several other girls.
Bobby Cannavale is Guy, the aggressive political advisor to Will Stacks, who’s running for mayor.
What was your favorite part of the movie?
BC: I loved doing Easy Street.
CD: Yeah. Easy Street. Bobby says that he has never danced before, but don’t believe him!
BC: Dancing does NOT come naturally for me.
CD: It does, though! I witnessed it.
BC: Well, it’s because it’s for the part. That’s the only way I could have done it. I’ve never been the kind of person to be like, “Let’s go dancing!” But for work it’s like gaining 100 pounds to play a guy who’s overweight. It’s for the part. And she’s the best partner. We were sympatico in the way we attacked it. Like sports or…
CD: Right. Very athletic, we were like, Let’s go! We were high-fiving.
BC: They kept adding stuff for us. That dance actually was a lot more simple when it started because we ended up getting it really quickly.
CD: They were like oh, you guys can do this!
BC: I also liked that number because for me, that’s almost the most natural musical number in the movie. We’re in a nightclub and there’s a band already playing. It sort of feels like the most natural setting to start dancing. That’s really why I did the part!
So are you ready for Dancing With the Stars?
BC: I’m not even ready to watch Dancing with the Stars?
[To CD] I read that your two biggest fears were heights and singing in front of people. How did you overcome that fear?
CD: To overcome heights I jumped out of an airplane and scaled a 1000-foot face of a mountain…not at the same time, clearly! I cried the entire time doing both of them. Not unlike this experience.
On this I knew I’d have to perform as if I could sing. That was what was terrifying. I didn’t know what that voice would sound like. But I knew they would surround me with the best professionals to help me find my best voice.
There were lots of tears. Hyperventilating in the vocal booth. It was terrifying.
But the thing I’ve learned about fear is that you can’t run from it. If you run from fear it jumps on your back and takes you down. If you look at fear and you run towards it and jump on it then your chances are better that you’re going to win.
Do you feel that you’ve overcome both of those fears?
I don’t know what to write…
CD: [Laughing] I have now done them both but I’m still scared of heights and I’m still scared of singing in front of people with a voice that says I know how to perform. but it doesn’t mean I won’t do it again. I tell myself I can do it, because I’ve done it once.
What’s one of the life lessons someone should get out of the movie?
CD: In the original movie, Miss Hannigan was a spinster. She didn’t get married and she wasn’t validated. She wanted love. Because she didn’t have it she had to live a life of raising kids in an orphanage. She didn’t love herself because no one loved her.
This Miss Hannigan is a comment towards today’s society about how we value ourselves. People spend all day long looking for likes and followers. This validates people. They take it as being loveable.
We’re totally screwing ourselves up. We’re not learning that it’s self-love. You can’t validate yourself by fame or celebrity, which is what our society is obsessed with. If you’re not seen by millions of people they’re not loveable. So Miss Hannigan was a victim of that. She didn’t get her fame, so she believed she wasn’t loveable. She spent her life hating herself. In return treating those poor little girls the way she treats herself and she doesn’t deserve to be treated that way.
Until she realizes she’s worth loving, she can’t be kind to herself and she can’t be kind to others.
I hope that people realize they don’t need fame, they need to love themselves for who they are not who they aren’t.
BC: I like the song Annie sings, ‘Opportunity’. I always like the idea that anything is possible as long as you’re in the moment. This little girl teaches the people in her life how to do that. The movie reinforces that in a really nice way for kids today.
For the rest of the interview see My Interview with Cameron Diaz and Bobby Cannavale from ANNIE #AnnieMovie by Marybeth Hamilton. She helped me put together this post because I missed the Press Junket due to the flu.