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Elle Fanning: 'Modelling's more extreme than movies'

Published 24/05/2016

Elle Fanning
Elle Fanning

Elle Fanning already had a passion for fashion before starring as a model in thriller movie, The Neon Demon.

Elle Fanning has realised how "extreme" the world of modelling is after filming her new movie, The Neon Demon.

The American actress plays aspiring fashion star Jesse in the thriller, who must learn to adapt in the beauty-obsessed culture of Los Angeles. Elle is no stranger to the industry, having posed for the likes of Marc Jacobs and Miu Miu, but she got an even closer look at the world of fashion during the filming of this flick.

“I didn’t lose a crazy amount of weight. I think also for Jesse, she’s the new girl, she’s kind of fresh, so it’s OK if she kind of was baby-faced," she told WWD of slightly whittling down her already slender frame. "She hasn’t really hit that world yet. She’s not really starving herself, she’s new to it.

“I grew up kind of admiring fashion and loving it and respecting the creativity of it and how beautiful it is. But then after doing this movie, it’s so interesting, because it’s like, ‘Wow, it’s just really all about the way you look.’ You know, it’s totally a physical aesthetic and it’s a lot of pressure on those girls,” she mused.

“I guess in a way some auditions for movies can be like that as well, but the modelling world is very extreme."

Joining her in the movie are real-life models Abbey Lee Kershaw and Taylor Hill, as well as Hollywood elites like Christina Hendricks and Keanu Reeves.

While the film is classed as a horror, Elle insists it isn't a classic example of the genre as it instead focuses on what terrifying things could happen in such a beauty-fixated world.

Costume designer Erin Benach, whose previous work includes Ryan Gosling movie Drive, pulled out all the stops with pieces from big brands like Saint Laurent.

“That was kind of the question for editing and filtering for myself: Is this good enough for one of those film moments?” she said. “I didn’t even want to bring it into a fitting unless I felt like it had that level of impact and could kind of carry a scene to that point.”

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