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Jun 24, 2022
Elle Fanning on Why She Was Hesitant to Star in Hulu’s ‘The Girl From Plainville’

Elle Fanning is Hulu’s MVP this year, in contention via both her edgy comedy series “The Great” and the dark limited series “The Girl From Plainville.” Not only does she star in both she also serves as an executive producer on the two projects.

“Hulu comments on my Instagram photos all the time,” she says. “And it’s always a boost from Hulu. They’re like, ‘Yes, Queen! You’re doing great!” It’s like, thanks, Hulu! Whoever’s running that, they’re really giving me a boost in the morning when I check my comments.”

That affirmation is appreciated by Fanning as she heads to London soon to shoot Season 3 of “The Great.” Last year, she kept a grueling schedule in which she filmed “The Girl From Plainville” just days after wrapping Season 2 of “The Great.”

“It was a complete 180,” she says. Fanning spoke to Variety’s Awards Circuit Podcast about both shows, and in particular what it took to research the story behind “The Girl From Plainville” and depict her character in an honest way. Also in this episode, we chat with “Pachinko” creator and showrunner Soo Hugh about the origins behind her Apple TV+ show, and what’s next. Listen below!

In “The Girl From Plainville,” Fanning plays Michelle Carter, the teen who was convicted of involuntary manslaughter for encouraging her boyfriend, Conrad Roy III, to end his life. It’s indeed a marked contrast to playing a rebel Catherine the Great in Hulu’s wild “The Great.” And at first, given the salacious nature of how the story of Carter and Roy was covered in the media, Fanning wasn’t so sure she was interested in the role.

“I was tentative to honestly sign on to the project,” she says. “I think this is a story that can really easily be sensationalized and romanticized to do a TV show. I was like, gosh, that is not the story that I want to tell, especially knowing that these families are alive, and a young man’s life was lost. And I really talked to everyone involved a lot of times before saying yes. And ultimately, I also was able to be a producer on the show, which of course, adds more of a responsibility. But I felt like having a part of that control could contribute to telling the story in a thoughtful way.

“Michelle, they portrayed her as his Black Widow manipulator. And then, Conrad was also portrayed really one dimensionally. So I think all of us wanted to dive into that and also in the world of technology,” she adds. “This is the first generation of seeing what the results of growing up with technology can do. I think it’s so intriguing and honestly, really scary.” [Source]


Tags: Interviews


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Current Projects
The Great (TV Series)

Role: Catherine
Release Date: 2020
A royal woman living in rural Austria during the seventeenth century is forced to choose between her own personal happiness and the future of Russia, when she marries an Emperor.

The Nightingale

Role: Isabelle
Release Date: 2022
The lives of two sisters living in France are torn apart at the onset of World War II. Based on Kristin Hannah's novel 'The Nightingale'.

The Girl from Plainville (TV Series)

Role: Michelle Carter
Release Date: 2022
A young woman from a small town in Massachusetts is accused of persuading her boyfriend to commit suicide.

Francis and the Godfather

Role: Ali MacGraw
Release Date: 202?
Young director Francis Ford Coppola faces off against producer Robert Evans during the production of 'The Godfather.'
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