Breaking: Moonrise Kingdom actress Kara Hayward is a normal 13-year-old who likes to shop at Hollister
Kara Hayward, the adorable star of Moonrise Kingdom, is clearly poised to be the next teen fashion sensation. She’s already wowed in a custom-made Marc Jacobs for Louis Vuitton dress at the Cannes Film Festival, and the ’60s-inspired outfits she wears in her first movie are the stuff of fashion bloggers’ dreams. But when we talked to Hayward, we found out that although she can walk the walk, her sense of style is totally age appropriate (and as much as we love designer fashion, it was nice to find out the 13-year-old Mensa member doesn’t go to school in thousand-dollar pieces). Read to hear what Hayward has to say about her own personal style and burgeoning acting career.
Lucky: When you found out you got the role, what did you to do celebrate? It’s such a life-changing role!
KH: My family and I just went to a quick little dinner. We were just so excited and I was going to need to memorize my lines, so really, it was a quick little thing.
Since the movie has come out, are people recognizing you? Or, because the movie has such a specific look, are you able to still be kind of under-the-radar?
In France, I was at the Cannes Film Festival and I was recognized a few times. So far, not yet in America. I think maybe the red hair I had in the movie throws people off a little.
That’s not your usual hair?
They dyed my hair. They actually had to re-dye it, because at first it came out a very unnatural shade of orange! It was really kind of interesting to walk around like that for a few days. They had me do my own hair and makeup on set, so that was a lot of fun.
Why did they decide to have you do your own hair and makeup?
For authenticity. They wanted it to look like a twelve year-old girl had done her own makeup, so a twelveyear-old girl did her own makeup!
Did you get to keep any outfits from the film?
I didn’t get to keep any of the clothes, no, but I did love the clothes. They were adorable. The only thing I got to keep from the movie was actually my character’s kitten.
Cool. What did you name him?
I named him Gino. I thought that was so adorable, and that’s what he looked like to me.
The ’60s happened way before you were born. What did you think of your outfits?
It’s definitely stuff that I like, and it’s not really styles that people wear anymore—they kind of have been lost in time. But I think that they are definitely adorable, and I’m wondering why people don’t wear them anymore. They’re cute!
Is it a surprising for you how interested people are in the fashion element of the movie? I mean, when you went to Cannes you wore a gown designed specifically for you by Marc Jacobs.
It was a surprise, really. It was very exciting that they were going to make this lovely dress for me, I loved it so much. I was so happy that I got the chance to wear that.
Did your mom and dad go with you?
My mother, my father and my little brother actually came along. My dad would take my little brother to the beach everyday, and they would go for walks along the shores. There was this little castle up in the hills that they walked around, and my mother would come and sit with me. I didn’t have to call my mother to come pick me up from anywhere; she was there with me.
What was the most amazing part of the trip for you?
I think it was seeing the movie get the recognition it deserves for being such a fabulous film. I enjoyed that very much.
Where you a fan of Wes’s before this, or did you have to some homework after you got the role?
I actually had seen Fantastic Mr. Fox, The Darjeeling Limited and The Royal Tenenbaums and I loved all three films, so when I learned I was going to be working with the man who made them, that was very exciting.
One fashion blog said declared you “The next Margot Tenenbaum.”
Oh, that’s pretty sweet! I know the characters did have similar eye makeup—that’s the thing I noticed between them.
You started acting in summer camp plays. What were your roles?
I believe the first one was Alice in Wonderland. I actually got the part of Alice. I remember those were so, so casual, we didn’t even have costumes, we just got up there and performed in our normal clothing. We wrote it ourselves, sticking to the story, of course, but really, we all just had so much fun with it that it just didn’t matter.
Are you an outdoorsy kind of girl? In the movie, there’s a lot of outdoors adventure and the idea of just exploring.
I didn’t used to be so outdoorsy, but now I’ve definitely had a lot more fun with it, and so now it’s less ‘Ew, bugs!” and more fun.
Do you have any idea what you’re doing to do next?
I have some opportunities, but so far all I know is that I want my next project to be just as beautiful of a story as this one was.
Do you go to regular school, or will you be home schooled?
I go to regular school, just public school. As long as I can act still, I’m happy with that.
Your character is a bit of a bookworm. What do you like to read?
Well, recently one of my favorite books has been Bram Stoker’s Dracula, I love the feel of the story, and how it kind of transports you back to that time and setting.
Would you like to be in a scary movie?
That would be fun, yeah, I think that would be fun to film a scary movie.
Do the kids at school still treat you the same? Or is it like you’re a movie star?
Some do get like that, but mostly it’s the same as it was before. I wouldn’t prefer it any other way. I’m just back in Boston; I have my friends and my family who are so thrilled and supportive of me
What young actors do you admire?
Two young actresses who I do look up to are Emma Watson and Emma Stone, because they’re both such intelligent young women. They’re very talented and humorous and they’ve learned to balance what they love with their career. That’s really important.
What’s your own style like on a day-to-day basis? Are you into clothes?
I do love clothes, but my own style is very casual. I love shorts and flip-flops. Every once in a while, it’s a lot of fun to dress up with a cute miniskirt and go out.
Where do you shop?
I love shopping at Hollister and Delia’s. They have really cute and comfortable styles. All of the teenage girl stores.
Do you intend to go to college? I know you’re a Mensa member.
I do intend to go to college and stay in school; I think it’s something that’s really important. Acting is what I want to do, but I think it’s really good to get a good education. I don’t know if I’d study acting in school, because whatever got me this part I’d like to preserve, instead of having someone show me a different way. I sort of would like to keep what I’ve got.
When did you fall in love with acting?
I think I first fell in love with acting during those plays at camp. I really enjoyed doing that. I knew acting was something I wanted to try, but I didn’t know it was something I wanted to make a career out of until Moonrise.
Did any of the film’s older actors give you any career advice?
Frances McDormand set a good example for rehearsing lines—before you go out and film your scene, you can sort of see how the other person is going to react, and you can play off that. So that’s really important to do before a scene.
Any fun summer plans?
So far, my summer is kind of undecided. If anything comes along my way, like a great script, that’s what I think I might be doing. But otherwise, it’s just going to be a normal summer. I’ll go with my friends to get sodas and lunch, go over their houses. When I’m not doing that, I’ll go to my grandparents’ house, because they live nearby. I love spending time with them.
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