A lot of times acting-talent is quiet in the weeks following casting announcements (as they're often being prepped on their role). However, Lawrence (Winter's Bone) is opening up with regard to her portrayal of Mystique - admitting she was somewhat of a blank slate with regard to Mystique's background, as well as the X-Men, in general.
Speaking with the Orlando Sentinel, the 19-year old actress described her initial feelings about coming aboard a big-budget comic-book-film, directed by Matthew Vaughn:
“When I got the part I dedicated a whole day to watching all three movies, and I really liked them. I was still a little worried, because I didn’t really understand the whole mutant thing. But the script cleared some of my questions up, and knowing that James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender were already on board gave me confidence."
Lawrence is no stranger to the spotlight, best known for her work on the recent indie film Winter's Bone - one of the highlights of this year's Sundance Film Festival. However, the actress admits that comic-book enthusiasts are not the same breed as indie film critics.
"I had no idea. I have been just ignorant of the whole fan base behind these films. I felt like an idiot. I had to call my mom and go, ‘Mom, I don’t KNOW about all this. This is before we’ve even started shooting, and it’s just CRAZY.'"
Despite her trepidations about the overwhelming nature of comic-book films, Lawrence is dedicated to bringing a character-driven portrayal to one of the X-Men's most compelling figures.
"I have to take Mystique back to the beginning, before she became who we saw later. I don’t know exactly what I can talk about, but this is going to be fun.”
Sounds like she's already learned the most important lesson of comic-book movie adaptations - when in doubt, keep your mouth shut.
Regardless of her young age, Lawrence has already demonstrated some incredible acting chops. X-Men: First Class is a good next step for the actress (showing that she can take-on a block-buster franchise).
Lawrence may only possess a limited knowledge of the X-Men, but Mystique fans should still be able to rest comfortably with the actress filling the iconic blue prosthetics - as Lawrence won't be mired down by what has come before. The starlet can truly discover how Mystique evolves into the complicated grown-up we know so well - exploring her dedication to Magneto, as well as what would cause her to leave Xavier's school behind.
X-Men: First Class opens June 3, 2011.