When Christina Ricci was actually a teenager

Christina Ricci plays a character who flashes back 25 years to her experiences as a teenager in the series Yellowjackets. In 1997 CBC spoke with her when she was actually a teen.

Yellowjackets actress spoke to CBC when she was 17

Samantha Hanratty, left, and Christina Ricci arrive at the premiere of "Yellowjackets" on Nov. 10, 2021, at Hollywood Legion in Los Angeles. Hanratty and Ricci both play the same character at different ages. (Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

The Showtime series Yellowjackets concerns a group of adult women confronting their dark past as New Jersey teenagers who survived a plane crash in the Ontario wilderness.

"The elevator pitch is 'What if Lord of the Flies, but girls?' In actuality, it's a little deeper than that," explained CBC Arts writer Chris Dart late last year. 

Actress Samantha Hanratty portrays Misty, the equipment manager for the stranded girls' soccer team in the show's flashback segments. But grown-up Misty is played by actress Christina Ricci.  

In 1997, the year after the crash happens in the series, Ricci was actually a teenager. And she spoke to CBC.

'I have to invest something emotionally'

Christina Ricci's approach to acting

24 years ago
Duration 1:29
While promoting the movie The Ice Storm in 1997, Christina Ricci discusses how her approach to acting has changed since she began acting as a child. 1:29

At the time, Ricci was interviewed by Christopher Heard for CBC's On the Arts while promoting her 1997 film The Ice Storm, directed by Ang Lee. According to the CBC-TV catalogue, the interview never aired.

Already known to audiences through her performances in 1990's Mermaids and the following year's The Addams Family, Ricci said her approach to acting had evolved since she was a child. 

"When you're a kid and you're acting, basically, the only thing that anyone ever teaches you is the technical aspect of it," she said, citing examples like hitting one's mark and knowing where to look. "They think that's the only thing you'll ever be able to understand, because you're 10 years old and have no brain."

But she had refined her approach in the seven years since her first role.

"Now I realize ... there's more to it," she said. "Like, I have to invest something emotionally in it, as opposed to just coming on and saying my lines and never messing up."

Acting as craft vs. art

Heard noted that The Ice Storm "crosses the line" between art and craft and asked whether Ricci treated acting as one or the other.

"This is my job, this is what I do. This is what I get paid to do," Ricci responded. "If I said I felt like it was art, that would be incredibly self-righteous ... I don't really see it as art."

"But this movie is art. I don't think it has anything to do with me."

Yellowjackets can be seen in Canada via streaming on Crave TV.

Canadian actor Sophie Nélisse, who plays teenage character Shauna in Yellowjackets, is Tom Power's guest on CBC Radio's Q on Thursday, Jan. 13. 

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