Ellen Page talks video game breakout performancePosted on October 10, 2013 | by Jeremy Grossman
Oscar-nominated actress Ellen Page can add an exciting new entry to her resume. Best known for her roles in “Juno” and “Inception,” she has taken on a performance unlike anything she has ever done before.
Page stars as the playable protagonist of “Beyond: Two Souls,” released on Tuesday, Oct. 8 for the PlayStation 3. Players control Page’s character, Jodie Holmes — a young girl being followed by a mysterious supernatural entity — and make decisions for her in a manner reminiscent of a choose-your-own-adventure story. “Beyond” may not resemble most blockbuster games, as it unfolds akin to something more like an interactive novel or film.
In a phone conference with WSN, Page elaborated on playing such a unique role, not just for her, but for the gaming industry in general.
“It’s weird,” she said. “I just wouldn’t have expected that [being in a video game] was going to happen [in my career]. If you had told me that three years ago, I would’ve been like, ‘You’re drunk.’”
Page explained what led her to take on this particular project.
“It was the same as choosing to do any job, quite frankly, the material and the character and the director that you’re going to work with,” she said.
“And so I wasn’t looking at it as like, ‘Oh, I wanna explore the video game world,” Page said. “It really was, ‘What the hell? A video game?’ And then, ‘Oh wow, this is actually really compelling and really intriguing, and this protagonist is so incredible, and what a great role and what a great opportunity, and I totally want to do this.’”
Page credited “Beyond” director and writer David Cage for providing her with a complex, multifaceted character to play.
“I think it’s really, really incredible that the female protagonist that he’s written is so strong and smart, but also very vulnerable and has an incredible amount of sadness, and is ultimately a very, very complex and very real character,” Page said.
“Let’s face it, I think we can all agree … I do not look like Lara Croft, and I think it’s cool that there’s a character in this game who, to me, is a vision of what a woman can be that isn’t kind of in the … narrow gaze that we’re used to seeing,” she said. “Not just in the video game world, in the film world as well, so I’m just grateful to David for writing such a great role for a woman.”
As for what other turns Page has in mind for the future of her career, the actress mentioned producing.
“I’m starting to produce, and that is something that I’m really, really enjoying,” Page said. “So I think that starting to focus more on the developing side of things, and sort of having that control is something that’s really exciting and really making me feel super inspired.”
With such a diverse range of experience under her belt at the young age of 26, it will be fascinating for audiences to see where Page’s career is headed next.