Rowan Blanchard has a lot of titles. Now she can add Director’s apprentice to the list as she both personified the character of Veronica Kiley and shadowed visionary Ava DuVernay in Disney’s “A Wrinkle in Time.”
With a vast social media presence, the Los Angeles native showcases her buoyancy amidst our stormy social climate, love of prolific art and fervor towards equality for all. Tackling roles that speak to her likeness in spreading awareness and challenging the standard on-screen representations of young women, she embodied her character Veronica no differently.
Leaders, teachers and creators alike, the youth is our future. With minds that dare to look beyond what separates us as people and continue to put forth declarations of inclusivity, love and optimism we have a shot at a world unlike one we’ve ever seen. Rowan, is a star utilizing her platform to inspire her peers and supporters. This film speaks to a number of relevant themes, one of which includes that elders can learn a thing or two from the young. As Ms. Blanchard continues to be a beacon of light, we raise our glasses (filled with sparkling water of course) to celebrate her bright future!
See below for our interview with the actress on her role from the highly anticipated, A Wrinkle in Time.
The Knockturnal: The film covers a lot of different messages and themes. What subjects do you think are missing in regards to youth culture in mainstream media?
Rowan: I think particularly something that I wanted to approach with Veronica, in Veronica’s relationship to Meg, is that in mainstream – in films especially, the films that I see for girls and the films that get brought up for me for girls, is that there is always a mean girl role. And the mean girl is always very stereotypical and doesn’t really have that many layers to her and is just mean for the sake of it. And I was really interested and grateful that I got to play a character that is a stereotypical bully but that I got to play her in a way where you got to see kind of her backstory and why she became the way that she is. I think that is missing.
The Knockturnal: In movies like Frozen and Black Panther we’re seeing a lot of sibling camaraderie going on. Why do you think that’s relevant?
Rowan: For me, I call a lot of my friends siblings. I think there’s something that’s really nice and affirming about the idea that you can have family outside of your blood family. When I saw Black Panther there was something that was so magnificent about the idea of all these people being so connected and I think same for Wrinkle In Time and I think sibling-hood goes past just blood.
The Knockturnal: If you had to give a face or identity to the “It” in our world, what or who would it be?
Rowan: I think we all know who it would be very easy to pinpoint that on, but I would go further than that and I would say that the “It” in the world are things [such as] racism, sexism, ableism, all these things that sort of manifest themselves in individuals who are very deep rooted in that. But the “It” itself is all of those ideals and idolations that have brought us here.
The Knockturnal: What was your biggest takeaway from behind the scenes, your directorial experience with Ava?
Rowan: Oh Gosh, I took away so much from that and I’m still so endlessly grateful that she sort of provided me with that support in that way. But one thing I guess that was a really big takeaway for me is how loyal Ava is and how she brought up all these people with her. She said something that was so eloquent when it was announced that she was directing A Wrinkle in Time, and it was like the first woman of color to direct a 100-million-dollar film but she said “not the first capable to do so.” And I think she brings that element into every single thing that she does, and getting to shadow her I realized that she is really interested in people just becoming better at what they love and succeeding at what they love.
The Knockturnal: So, if it weren’t A Wrinkle in Time and instead you were able to travel through time when would you go and why?
Rowan: I would probably pick the future. I feel the past is very set in stone and I don’t want to mess with that. I would want to go to the future and I want to see how everyone is doing. I feel like even though this world and specifically this country is so defined by this one man who is representing a large chapter of history that was sort of overlooked, I do believe that my generation and young people are really moving us forward in a direction that’s so inspiring and vivid and so based in love. And I’m really excited to see what that manifests itself into.
The Knockturnal: What sort of person would love this film?
Rowan: I think this film is really for young people. I’m very excited for adults to see anything. I think it’s good for adults to see movies like this and movies like Black Panther, and see films that they maybe never saw themselves [in] when they were kids. But there is something to be said for our young people who will see themselves in this film. Young black girls who have never seen themselves in a film like this and get to see this. And to have these really sensitive male characters that aren’t hyper masculine or super intensely masculine is really cool.