Howard still a fan girl who runs into her idols

HOLLYWOOD BACKGROUND:Howard, daughter of an Oscar-winning director, will appear in the Jurassic World sequel.


    Jun 16, 2016

    Howard still a fan girl who runs into her idols


    SHE grew up around movie sets watching her father direct Tom Cruise, Robert de Niro and other Hollywood greats, yet Bryce Dallas Howard still has her moments of giddy fandom.

    The 35-year-old actress recalls her somewhat undignified first meeting with Robert Redford on the set of her new film, Disney's remake of its own 1977 classic Pete's Dragon, directed by David Lowery.

    "There was this big empty road and we were supposed to run towards each other and re-unite. It's an emotional thing," she said.

    "We were running towards each other and I kind of picked up speed because I was so excited, and totally barrelled into him."

    The 79-year-old Redford was able to take the hit, though he might be taken aback at the actress coming at him "like a cannonball", she said.

    Whether she is talking about growing up in rural Connecticut, taking her children to school or filming a blockbustermovie, Howard could be any mum-of-two in America.

    The eldest of four children of Ron Howard, the Oscar-winning director, the actress divided her childhood between film studios and having adventures around the family home.

    The wonder of growing up in the great outdoors is a central preoccupation of Pete's Dragon, the story of an orphaned boy and his best friend Elliot who happens to be a green fire-breathing beast.

    Howard grew up with the original movie playing on a loop but says another reason for taking the part of forest ranger Grace was the opportunity to spend six months in New Zealand.

    She and her husband of 10 years, the actor Seth Gabel, were able to create "wonderful memories", she said, for her children, aged nine and four.

    Her career began when, as a 21-year-old stage actress, she was spotted by M. Night Shyamalan, director of The Sixth Sense.

    He invited her to lunch and tossed her the script of The Village, and without having to go through an audition, she landed a lead part.

    A Golden Globe nomination as Rosalind in Kenneth Branagh's As You Like It was followed by Spider-Man 3.

    She appeared in Terminator Salvation, played a vampire in the Twilight movie Eclipse, and was a deliciously spiteful socialite in The Help.

    But Howard is best known for her part as park boss Claire Dearing in dinosaur epic Jurassic World, the fourth-highest grossing film of all time.

    Filming of the sequel begins next year, and social media has been awash with rumours on its direction - including a move away from the theme park and the disastrous development of dinosaurs as pets.

    "I think the safest, most professional thing to do is not say anything, unless it is said before I say it," the actress said.

    Pete's Dragon appears in US theatres from Aug 12.