With the film set to hit theaters this weekend, Focus Features brought “Hanna” director Joe Wright and star Saoirse Ronan to WonderCon in San Francisco over the weekend to talk about their wild-child adventure. We caught up with the actress as she did rounds with press talking about their kinetic action thriller.
Particularly dominant in the news of late has been talk about whether or not Saoirse Ronan would be reuniting with her “The Lovely Bones” director Peter Jackson on the upcoming “The Hobbit” films and it sounds like we are not much closer to having that question answered. Ronan acknowledges the world’s curiosity noting, “IMDB says one thing,” but wouldn’t confirm the rumors about the role. Nevertheless, she went on to reveal an awareness of the production’s upcoming plans to disclose such information, stating, “I’m not actually attached; I’m not confirmed. But they are introducing new characters. I know that there’s a few new characters.” She went on to tease at the idea of taking on the rumored elfen role of Itaril, playfully imagining out loud, “I think I’d pass for an elf, I think if I had the right ears. I wouldn’t want to be a hobbit. I don’t like the hairy feet.”
One film that Ronan has a confirmed role in is “Precious” scribe Geoffrey Fletcher’s directorial debut “Violet & Daisy” in which Ronan will play one half of the titular teen assassin duo as Daisy alongside Alexis Bledel’s Violet. Despite the sound of the film from the logline, Ronan explained that this isn’t exactly the year she suddenly transitions to being an action star, saying, “Doing ‘Hanna’ didn’t encourage me to do more action, but it certainly let me know that I could do it. ‘Violet & Daisy’ on the other hand, that’s a black comedy and not an action film at all. Daisy, my character, holds a gun and that’s about all the similarity that the two have. Everyone thinks that they’re going to be these kick-ass girls, but neither of them are really.”
At the WonderCon “Hanna” panel, director Wright made known his strong opinion about the most recent offering of kick-ass girls in theaters, calling “Sucker Punch” “bullshit.” While Ronan agrees with Wright that there’s a right and wrong way to portray women as action heroes, she expresses the point more politely. She admits to not having seen the film itself yet, but says, “I’ve seen the billboards... I don’t think the poster sends out the right message because girls are in little mini-skirts and they’ve got pigtails and they look like schoolgirls with guns. I don’t like the idea of people being sexed up in anyway. Film is an art form and we don’t need to make it that commercial. Of course it needs to sell but we don’t need to just give up.”
To be certain, there is nothing sexed up about Ronan in "Hanna." It's a compact film that, not unlike the Bourne movies, finds the actress struggling with her identity as she takes down various people who want to bring her in. It's about as far away as you get from Zack Snyder's CGI action-fest with fight scenes firmly rooted in real deal hand-to-hand combat, all lensed with vigor by Wright. Check out the film when it hits this Friday, April 8th. --reporting by Sean Gillane