Quvenzhané Wallis cries on cue by thinking of extinct polar bears: amazing?

Quvenzhane Wallis

Quvenzhane Wallis is only 11 years old and has appeared in two Oscar nominated films. She’s also the youngest person nominated for a best actress award (Beasts of the Southern Wild). She had a tiny role in 12 Years a Slave yet still left an impression. Quvenzhane has many years ahead of her in Hollywood, but she must first navigate the dangerous waters of child stardom. I think she’ll be fine, don’t you? Quvenzhane seems very mature, and her mother accompanies her on red carpets and film sets. I remember watching Quvenzhane on the Oscar red carpet a few years ago. She was an incredibly poised young lady who didn’t seem fazed by the flashbulbs and glitz. She gave an equally elegant interview to the New York Times to promote her leading role in the Annie remake.

Her acting process: “I work with my acting coach to help me get into character and do pronunciation drills and tongue twisters to help me deliver lines. I envision the script as a story in my mind, memorize the entire thing and have it play out. It helps me figure out where my character needs to go.”

On maintaining work & playtime: “You have to be serious, but you also have to make your own time to have fun. I tell jokes, I laugh with the people on set, I play with the director. Then I try to pay attention and see what I have to do.”

How she weeps on cue: “When I need to cry, I think of very sad things, mostly about animals. My favorite animal is a polar bear. They’re going extinct, and I really don’t want that to happen.” She can also burp on command.

On whether her 3 siblings covet her success: “They each have their own thing, ma’am.”

[From New York Times]

Quvenzhane also says she always eats maple-and-brown sugar oatmeal before work. She seems like a mini grown-up with great style, but I appreciate the detail about burping on command. That’s an important acting skill! In all seriousness, I believe this young lady has many years of acting ahead of her. She’ll probably put both Cameron Diaz and Jamie Foxx to shame in the Annie remake. The late Roger Ebert described little Quvenzhane as “a small force of nature.” This little girl, now a tween, will go places. I love that she thinks of polar bears when she has to cry on set. She’s so dignified and composed, and I don’t see her falling into any of the usual teen-actor trappings.

Oh, and I want this purse. It’s custom made from Poochie & Co.

Quvenzhane Wallis

Photos courtesy of WENN

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33 Responses to “Quvenzhané Wallis cries on cue by thinking of extinct polar bears: amazing?”

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  1. Neelyo says:

    She says ‘ma’am’ to a reporter. That’s adorable.

  2. Abbott says:

    I dunno… isn’t the word that Q’s mom is a bit of a stage mom? I remember when Beasts was on the award circuit and the stories about how hard her ma was pushing her.

    • Shannon says:

      I think this describes every child star’s parents. The kids aren’t signing themselves up with agencies on their own, you know?

    • Liv says:

      Yep, I remember her on a red carpet around Oscar time. It was pretty obvious that it got already to her head and that her whole family is kind of depending on her. I would never get my kid into acting at that age. They are just not staying sane in that industry.

  3. Chris says:

    Cool. Another polar bear fan. They’re my favorite animal too. They look adorable but they’re totally bad ass. They’re fantastic.

  4. Erinn says:

    Ahhhh she’s the cutest. I hope someday that I have a child who’s as articulate and sweet as this girl. Even with the Hollywood life, she seems incredibly polite and thoughtful. And “small force of nature” is such an amazing description.

  5. GoodNamesAllTaken says:

    What a beautiful child. The thing about the polar bears made me kind of sad, actually. Just to think that she has to make herself that sad to cry on cue. I hope the world is kind to her.

    I have never been able to burp on cue, and it was a skill I truly envied for a long time. Don’t ask me why. I would never burp in front of people, but my brothers could do it, and I was jealous.

    • Chris says:

      That’s terrible. Being able to burp and fart on cue is one of life’s essential skills.

      • GoodNamesAllTaken says:

        Oh no, don’t tell me I have to feel inadequate about something ELSE? Lol

      • Lucky Charm says:

        :-( Then I am woefully inadequate, since I can’t do either! Although to be honest, I can’t imagine a circumstance where I would be inclined to do so even if I could. :-)

  6. Rhiley says:

    I say this in all seriousness and not as snark, but I am surprised Angie has not written a movie just for Quvenzhane.

  7. Eleonor says:

    I hope she will be able to survive Hollywood during the years to come., she is such a precious girl.

  8. Kiddo says:

    This little girl is more articulate and thoughtful than people twice her age. At her age, I hope she is being treated well by the business and her parents. There are so many childhood star horror stories, I hope she doesn’t become one. I thoroughly enjoyed Beasts of the Southern Wild, and never understood how people were saying that she wasn’t acting in that film because she was too young. That made zero sense to me. She will make a fantastic Annie.

    • mimif says:

      That movie is in my Top Ten, and she was absolutely fantastic in it. Ditto to wishing her well in her life and career.

  9. eowyn says:

    I like her.
    She is a talented and smart young lady.
    I hope hollywood won’t suck her up and brainwashed her. It is already good she is still going to school and takes her education seriously.

  10. Scri says:

    She seems lovely. Let’s hope her family really is grounded, and she doesn’t get Lohaned.

    • Jaderu says:

      I can remember the interviews with a tiny little freckle faced Lindsay from the Parent Trap. Strange and a bit creepy to think back at how wide-eyed and innocent she was.
      I hope Quvenzhane is protected and guided the right way.

  11. QQ says:

    im not into kids but this Baby Hits me in the Ovaries in THEE absolute worst way…. Jesus I remember seeing her in Beasts of The Southern Wild OMG I felt absolutely crazy

  12. sadezilla says:

    I know other people have said this already, but she seems delightful, and I hope she stays that way growing up as a child star. I died when she called the reporter “ma’am” too!

  13. kap says:

    It rings alarm bells for me when a kid seems too wellbehaved. It’s not normal for a kid to be ‘mature’ and unfazed by this kind of circus.

    • Lucky Charm says:

      ?????? I don’t see what’s so unusual about it. My children were all very well behaved and mature (unless they were at home, of course, lol!) They were raised to have good manners, and they all turned out to be perfectly normal and well-adjusted adults. No one went off the rails, got involved with drugs, sent to jail or made bad decisions about the friends they made.

  14. Parka says:

    I thought it was pretty routine for kids to cry on a drop of the hat. I know my nieces and nephews do. I haven’t seen anything of Q’s, so, I can’t stay anything on her acting, but either way she has definitely made a name for herself getting nominated for an Oscar so young. I do have to highly compliment her on her maturity and her good manners in the interview. I wish the best in the career, and that she doesn’t get taken advantage of or falls into the usual pitfalls of child stars.

    Edit: I saw her in 12 Years A Slave, although, I didn’t really pay attention to her character, I was focused almost deadly on Chiwetel’s character.

  15. Lucy2 says:

    She was extraordinary in beasts of the Southern wild, and I hope she continues to have a great acting career. She also seems very smart, mature, and well spoken. Hopefully her family is the same, and she’s able to balance a regular life with all of this.