Feature Interviews - Actresses
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> Hilary and Haylie Duff
AND HAYLIE DUFF
GETTING MATERIAL FOR LIFE
by Brad Balfour
Copyright ©2006 PopEntertainment.com. All rights reserved.
August 25, 2006.
The Duff sisters –
Hilary, 19, and Haylie, 21 – have had a remarkable run in showbiz so far
for such young blossoming talents. Hilary's career kicked into high gear
with the hit TV show, Lizzy McGuire, on The Disney Channel and has
continued on with starring roles in film and a solo recording career.
Older sister, Haylie, hasn't quite matched her younger sibling's high
profile, but she's been a co-star in such TV series as 7th
Heaven, had supporting roles in such films as Napoleon Dynamite,
has been recording albums as well, and has even got her turn on Broadway
as Amber Von Tussle in Hairspray.
Now they take a
swipe at their own community of teen stars through Material Girls,
veteran director Martha Coolidge's slapstick comedy of errors, about two
sister/heiresses to a hugely successful cosmetic company and their efforts
to thwart a hostile take-over. Along the way, the film
attempts to make fun of Hollywood, Beverly Hills and the glitterati girls
who grow up in such obscenely opulent places.
It's easy to think
this film is based on some well-known young women in Hollywood…
Yeah, that started early on when it was announced we were doing the movie.
It's not based on anyone at all whatsoever; it's based on the idea of what
girls like this could be, but they're not actual girls.
So, what would you
say to people who assume you are like these hard-partying,
Really? Do you think that we are?
No, but I'm just
saying that people read about young actresses and the glamorous clothes
and the trendy clubs.
There are a lot of people who do that, but it's not necessarily us.
I know what you mean; people have this perception about what it's like to
be a young actor, live in Hollywood and be around that environment.
Definitely there were things that we drew from in our real life that we've
been around and exposed to. But we try to stay as private as we can with
our personal lives.
else are you different?
In the movie, as fabulous as they look when they are out – well, not in
the middle of the movie because everything goes down – but in the
beginning you see them when they are out [on the town] and their life is
so fast and they are here and there and they look like this and there are
pictures with the car and the dress and all this stuff... It looks so
exciting and then they're at home and they're like, “I'm just as fabulous
at home,” and that's definitely not normal. That is not how we live in our
real lives and that sets us apart.
What are your real
Our lives are pretty normal.
What are you talking about?
Whenever we're not working, we do really normal things.
Yeah, but when are we ever not working?
Hilary, how is your
music coming along?
I am getting ready to premiere my video on [MTV's] Total Request Live
and it's called "Playing With Fire." The record will be out in November.
Does the album have
a title yet?
No, not yet.
What can we expect
It's totally different than any of the music that I have ever done before.
I don't want to say it's hip-hop because it's totally not, but it's a
little less pop-rock and more electronic-sounding. It has a lot of dance
melodies. I don't know; it's not even completely written yet. I know it's
coming out in November, but I have to hurry, so September is the month to
get it all finished. The music that I listen to is totally different that
the type of music that I sing and I don't think I would ever try to do the
music that I listen to. It's not me, it's not who I am, it's not how
people know me.
What do you listen
I like Citizen Cope, Morrissey, The Cure and Tupac. Throw a little
gangster rap in there? I like a lot of stuff.
And, Haylie, you are
Hairspray now. What is that like?
I love it! It's exhilarating and different than anything that I'd done
before and I'm doing the new season of 7th Heaven, at the same
time. So, it's a little intense, but the show itself is so much fun. You
can be so tired and worn out and then at the end of the day, the minute
that music starts, there is this energy that is undeniable. Anyone who has
seen that show gets what I'm talking about. It's a really special group of
people and the whole show is really magical.
What's the secret to
your great relationship?
We started out this way. We started out as children being very close even
when we were very little and I can't imagine it being any other way. And
we appreciate it.
We always shared the same group of friends. We've always been there for
each other and had to spend a lot of time together because when we lived
in San Antonio we lived in the Hill Country and there were not that many
kids to play with. So all we had to play with was each other and if we
would fight my mom wouldn't let us back in the house until we made up.
She'd say, “Go play in the yard until you're not fighting any more.”
And then when we came out to LA, we didn't know anyone, so when we met
kids, we met them together. And, Haylie, for some odd reason...
I don't know why you're different, most older siblings are like not
wanting to bring their younger siblings around
and my sister always would be like, someone would invite her over for a
sleep-over and she would be like, "Can I bring
my little sister?" And I was always included.
Were you looking for
a project to do together?
We weren't out there looking for something to do together. This came along
and we had [the script] for a couple of years, actually, and we felt a
little too young for it at the time and then it came back around again and
it felt like a good fit.
We always want to do things together because we're really close, but I
don't think we were particularly looking for something and then we
remembered we had this meeting a long time ago at Maverick (Films) and we
thought, "That would be great now! We're at the
perfect age!" It was just a lot of fun. These
girls aren't really like us in real life. They are [only like us] in the
fact that they are really close and they are sisters, but they are
magnified and love being in the public and love attention, so it is poking
fun of what everybody thinks some people are like.
This movie was
filmed a while ago. What was it like watching yourself on-screen when you
were so much younger?
It's weird when we saw it all come together. It was a very long process.
It's just nice that we get to see the final product and see our hard work
on something we had so much fun on and something we got to do together.
And it was something that made us laugh which was our goal from the
What was it like
working with a woman director?
And how about
working with Anjelica Huston [who plays the cosmetics queen who wants
their late dad's company]?
She's so wonderful.
She's really striking. Like, in real life, she has such a presence in the
room; Haylie and I were so excited when she decided to do the movie. When
we actually got to meet her, we were a little nervous. She's just so
professional and works really hard and totally knew what she wanted to
look like for her character and what she thought her character would act
like. All of the choices that she made were brilliant and she's just
really smart and really embraced Haylie and I; that was just very nice.
And is a really good role model, too, especially, as a girl…
…Woman in the business we work in. She's the perfect example of someone
who grew up in this business – you know her father was in this business –
and she is so talented and is able to balance a personal life and a
professional life and do it with such grace. I look up to her in a lot of
Was the film
inspired by the Madonna song?
It is, well, the song definitely was an inspiration for the movie. It's
not the plot of the movie, obviously, but these girls are materialistic.
I don't think it inspired the movie. I think that the song fit great with
the movie. The script didn't come from the song.
Oh, I thought it did.
Good to know [laughs].