After two years and a shoot that was a challenge, by all accounts, Factory Girl is finally making its way to a theater near you (or me, at least.) The film is a biopic of Andy Warhol hanger-on Edie Sedgwick, who breezed into the artist's life, hung around his circle for a short time while living on the dime of her rich family, and was then spit out the other side of the 'factory' with a drug habit and psychological problems that would leave her dead at 28. The film's notoriety has been two-fold: it's something of a public coming-out for star Sienna Miller, who has felled forests with all the tabloid fodder she's generated with her personal life, but drawn little attention for her acting work until now. The film was also threatened with crippling litigation from Bob Dylan, who felt that a harmonica-chewing, folk-singing hipster-icon character played by Hayden Christensen was an unflattering, biographical portrait of him.
Christensen is in Tokyo, doing location shooting for the upcoming science-fiction film, Jumper, and could not attend this week's junket for Factory Girl. Those on hand included director George Hickenlooper, Sienna Miller, and Guy Pearce, who embodies the iconic Warhol, right down to his blotchy, pock-marked skin and ethereal accent. Here's a sampling of what went on:
Cinematical: Talk about the climactic scene, where your character confronts Andy Warhol in the restaurant. How did you prepare for such an emotional scene, and how did the director guide you through it? "That was a really intimidating scene, because it was actually our second day of shooting on the movie. It just so happens that schedules sometimes work out like that, and I was obviously very nervous. I didn't know anyone, but in a way that helped with the feeling of vulnerability, and George.....what George has an amazing ability to do for me is to create an environment that's very safe and very trusting, so that you feel you have the ability to go as far as you want to go, and it's never too far. He's very embracing of an actor's journey. He just sort of made me feel protected and reassured and comforted and encouraged, constantly. And it really helped, to be supported like that, because you feel like you want to do well for that person."