By Fred Topel | Image property of Warner Bros Pictures
Where The Wild Things Are
Starring in Where The Wild Things Are has brought Lauren Ambrose full circle. The new mom is now reading the book to her two-year-old, as it was once read to her. She provides the voice of one of the wild things in the film, which may be as much for parents as it is for children.
Lauren Ambrose One of the Wild Things
“When was the book published, in the ‘60s?” Ambrose said. “So generations of people, there’s this essential part of you connected to this book. So many people so yeah, I think there’s this generational pull toward this book so I guess it’s for all of those people who love it and will continue to love it.”
The creatures of Spike Jonze’s movie have names, though they are still ambiguous. Ambrose plays KW. “I remember being like, ‘What’s KW stand for?’ He was like, ‘Katherine?’ Then I didn’t ask W. I just made it up.”
The movie leaves a lot of blanks for audiences to fill in, just as Maurice Sendak’s book did for young readers. “I haven’t seen the most recent version of it in a while but in terms of why the book I think lends itself, I think just because it is so spare and so you get these incredibly creative people like Spike and Dave Eggers. They’re going to fill in what happens in between all of that sparseness, right? Then when you see it, you see the Australian outback that’s been shot and these incredible sets and this incredible use of technology, use of CGI, used so sparingly just to make it fantastic without making it heavy-handed.”
Ambrose came to the film later than other voices, having replaced another actor. While other wild things had time to bond over Jonze’s games of throwing rolls and running around, Ambrose had to jump in. “I guess the movie just evolved and changed and then I came into it a little bit later. So I missed the bread roll fights and running around the mountains but I got to get pretty physical with Spike and James Gandolfini in New York. It was pretty great.”