Teen Actors on Global Stage
Disney fantasy film Bridge to Terabithia has thrust four teenage New Zealand actors into the limelight. The film, which features Carly Owen (pictured), Isabelle-Rose Kircher and Cameron Wakefield of Wellington and Aucklander Elliot Lawless has been an instant box office hit in the United States after a successful Hollywood premiere. Filmed in Auckland, Bridge to Terabithia grossed US$22.5 million in its first weekend, and is expected to do well after positive reviews. Several of the young Kiwi actors in the film travelled with their parents to the States for its debut, where they walked the red carpet and were interviewed by Los Angeles entertainment media. Bridge to Terabithia is the film adaptation of Katherine Paterson’s 1977 novel about an outcast named Jesse and a tomboy called Leslie who develop an imaginary kingdom. In the film, their imaginations are brought to life by Wellington’s Oscar-winning effects studio Weta Digital. Adult New Zealand cast members include Wellington’s Jen Wolfe and Ian Harcourt, cousin of actress Miranda Harcourt, the teenage actors’ drama teacher. Bridge to Terabithia is expected to open in New Zealand in May or June.