Ginger & Rosa Opens This Week: Stars Elle Fanning and Alice Englert on Friendship, Accents, and Being Redheaded

Ginger & Rosa
Photo: Courtesy

Do you remember your teenage best friend, and all the trials and tribulations that came with that friendship? That’s the issue at play in Ginger & Rosa—the coming of age tale starring Elle Fanning (Ginger) and Alice Englert (Rosa) as best friends growing up in ‘60s London—open now in New York and Los Angeles, and nationwide this Friday. We caught up with the young stars of the film when it premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival to dive into their roles, from their British accents to their off-screen moments. “I hope is that the audience feels something, and I hope that they have an opinion, good or bad,” Englert said of the film. Scroll down to read more of what they have to say, and visit to find out where and when it’s playing near you.

How did you prepare for your British accent?Elle: It was a lot of work because I had never done an accent in a movie before. My dialect coach and I worked very hard beforehand. We didn’t have a dialect coach on set, so for everyone in the cast who wasn’t English, we all really had to get to know the British accent before shooting. While we were shooting, we just forgot about it and it was just sort of second nature.

Alice: I’m Australian. The Australian accent is not too different, but the whole placement of the accent is different.

Did you start to think in a British accent?Elle: Filming in London, you start to. It starts to come to you.

How did you stay entertained on set?Alice: Well actually I used to bring my acoustic guitar to set and I used to play a lot of Miles Davis in my trailer.

How did you react to having to dye your hair red?Elle: The red hair has its own life in the film, definitely. It was a totally different experience. My hair has never been anything but blonde before. First, we did a lot of test strands and combined three colors to make the red. I loved it.

Was being a redhead that different from being blonde?Elle: I think its very different. When you’re in London, a lot of people are red, so I felt like I did sort of fit in. I’m glad that I dyed my hair as opposed to a wig because it really made me become Ginger more. Her nickname is Ginger, and it’s all about that fiery red hair. [Director Sally Potter] wanted it as wild as possible so it has a life of its own.

Did you two become very close on the film?Alice: Yes, we had a really great time and spent a lot of time with each other at the beginning of it, the rehearsal period. We just got to know each other and got to know each others’ quirks. Elle’s adorable and so lovely. I gave her a copy of my favorite books, William Blake’s Songs of Innocence and Experience because I think she’s the perfect mix of both, really. So young, yet, so old—so experienced.

Plus, go inside our Toronto Film Festival photo studio.

MORE:Behind the Scenes with Alice EnglertBehind the Scenes with Elle FanningElle Fanning to Play Sleeping Beauty

Sharon Clott and Karen Levy

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