While at the Deauville Festival, where she presented “Flag Day” and received the New Hollywood award, Dylan Penn came back with us on the film and her desire to direct before evoking the films of her father that she prefers.
1. Into the Wild by Sean Penn (2007)
After Cannes, it is in another French festival that Dylan Penn was in the spotlight in 2021: on the sidelines of the preview, preview, of Flag Day in Deauville, the actress indeed received the New Hollywood award, put back to a hope. She succeeds Ryan Gosling, Jessica Chastain, Daniel Radcliffe or Sophie Turner.
And it is the day after the screening on the boards, the daughter of Sean Penn and Robin Wright came back with us on this award, her desires for directing and the work with her father, with to unveil her top 3 films of this latest.
DashFUN: What does an award like this represent at this stage in your career?
Dylan penn : Just being recognized is beyond my wildest dreams. And I love this movie. I am very proud of my father. I love it in its entirety, not to mention myself: I saw the first five minutes last night [lors de l’avant-première], and seeing these images in 16mm on the big screen, it was really beautiful. But I don’t yet know what this award will mean to me.
Do you remember when you wanted to be an actress?
It took a long time. At first I always thought that acting was a ridiculous idea: to see adults disguising themselves as other people seemed crazy to me. Today I have enormous respect for the actors for doing it myself.
In fact I had expressed my desire to achieve, around the age of 17 or 18 I think, and my two parents told me, on several occasions, that one should not put one foot on a plateau if one didn’t know what it was to play. So that’s what pushed me to become an actress. And then I started to find it funny, this role happened and it was too good to pass up.
Both my parents told me that you shouldn’t put your foot on a plateau if you didn’t know what it was like to play
Did you tell your parents you found acting ridiculous?
No (laughs) I just told them it wasn’t something I wanted to do. I think they knew I would end up doing it, and they never pushed me. But I would never go tell them “Your job is ridiculous!” (laughs)
Or we should add “But finally I realize that …”
(laughs) Now I realize it’s a real job. It’s a real profession, and they are both excellent at it.
And you are doing it today under the direction of your father. Is it easier to play for your father, or more difficult?
A bit of both. Sometimes you have to refer to your own life as an actor, to bring out certain emotions, especially when you play a girl and her father. But my dad really wrapped up the character. And, as a director, he’s a very good collaborator, which makes working with him easy.
It’s also important to note that my dad didn’t allow phones on set so everyone was really engaged and present. It made our play space really safe, and allowed us to be vulnerable and raw. It was almost like doing family therapy every day (laughs)
Did you hesitate when the role was offered to you?
When I was 15-16, I was offered to play young Jennifer, and I categorically refused. And said several times that I wouldn’t. But there have been several versions, because it has been almost twenty years that William Horberg and the real Jennifer Vogel have been trying to mount the project. And about fifteen years later, he resurfaced with my father in directing, and another actor to play John.
This other actor and I have met several times to try to find chemistry and get to know each other. But a month before filming, he had to retire because of family issues. My father then met six different actors, but this is an independent, no money, summer movie, and no one could do it. So he had to grab the role out of necessity. So everything fell into place in the space of thirty days, it was a kind of happy coincidence.
What is the best advice your mom and dad gave you …