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Interview: Actress Hailee Steinfeld on her Best Friend Bumblebee

The origin story of Transformer Bumblebee gave Hailee Steinfeld great challenges!

Dec 19, 2018

By: Lynn Barker

Young actress/singer Hailee Steinfeld won our hearts most recently in the Pitch Perfect films and as a tortured teen in The Edge of Seventeen.  This week she takes on action with emotion in the charming Transformer origin film Bumblebee. We wanted to know about her greatest challenges making the film and wildly driving while remembering lines came to mind.

Hailee had to drive Bumblebee and know her linesHailee had to drive Bumblebee and know her linesCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

What is her character Charlie’s relationship with a big, yellow robot really like? Read on and see!

Bumblebee Movie Trailer

Q: What excites you about this movie?

  • Hailee: I don’t know where to begin. To be part of a (movie) franchise that is so huge and means so much to so many people is really an honor. To tell Bumblebee’s origin story is yet another honor. It feels great. This is a story that Transformers fans will love and appreciate I feel because we are talking about a fan favorite Transformer here. This is his story. This is how he came to be what we know and love and it’s really exciting that we get to share that with people.

Beloved Transformer BumblebeeBeloved Transformer BumblebeeCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: Who is your character?

  • Hailee: I play Charlie Watson and we find her in a place where she’s sort of broken. She’s an old soul but young at heart at the same time. She has this beautiful journey of finding out who she is and what makes her happy. Early on we meet her and find out that she lost her dad. He was her best friend and ticket to everything. He taught her how to work on a car and a car meant freedom. That’s what they did together. It was their thing. When she lost that, she lost part of herself. So, this movie is a journey of her finding that missing piece and that happens to be a robot by the name of Bumblebee.

Charlie in an emotional momentCharlie in an emotional momentCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: What is the relationship between your character Charlie and Bumblebee?

  • Hailee: Charlie and Bumblebee have a very special relationship in this film. It really stems from the two of them feeling a bit lost, very lost and misunderstood and confused. They don’t know where they belong in this world. They find each other at a place in their lives where they are trying to figure it out and what better way to figure it out than with somebody going through the same thing? So, it really is this incredible journey of this ever-evolving friendship.

Charlie is shocked when her VW transformsCharlie is shocked when her VW transformsCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: What was interesting to you about playing this role?

  • Hailee: This role was very physically demanding. It’s very inspired by music. Here are so many different parts of this character and story that were of interest to me, those being two of them. When it came to playing her specifically, there are so many facets when it comes to the Transformer world that inspired all the activity that takes place; all her stunts and the level of strength that needed to be shown in every scene, every moment of those scenes and there is the side of her that is at home with her family. The more grounded emotional stuff takes place in those scenes. There is such a wide variety of emotion that this character portrays which I feel, I hope, will be relatable to a lot of people.

Charlie and friend Memo see a TransformerCharlie and friend Memo see a TransformerCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: What did you enjoy most doing in the film?

  • Hailee: One of the things I enjoyed most was accepting the challenge of driving and acting at the same time because I did not realize how difficult that can be when you have to think about your lines in the scene and where you are in this film and the amount of people around you that you are trying not to hit (she laughs), and having to hit certain marks. You can’t just drive the car and park it, you have to like tee up to this mark that’s taped to the ground that you really can’t see. There are so many things you have to take into consideration while driving in the scene that I was not aware of.

Bumblebee comforts CharlieBumblebee comforts CharlieCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: Do you think Transformers fans will be into the film?

  • Hailee: I really think that this is a film that Transformers fans will love and appreciate. I hope so anyway. I think this film has so much in it and it has all of the elements that they know and love on the action side of things, just visually stunning, pack-in action that will take your breath away and this story that is so character-driven and not hard to identify with.

Charlie's family meets BumblebeeCharlie's family meets BumblebeeCourtesy of Paramount Pictures

Q: Will general audiences also get into it?

  • Hailee: You don’t have to know anything about Transformers to enjoy it. As much as it is a part of this wonderful franchise, it’s its own stand-alone story and film. It obviously precedes every Transformers film that we do know and love so much so there is so much in it that you can learn from this, then take that knowledge from this to the others. But, it is filled with so much heart and emotion and a ton of laughter will take place I find when watching this. Yeah, it’s a special one.

See Bumblebee in theaters Friday, December 21st

Bumblebee Movie PosterBumblebee Movie PosterCourtesy of Paramount Pictures
Lay Down Your Opinion!

Are you a Hailee Steinfeld fan? Are you a Transformers fan? Have you seen the trailers and want to take in Bumblebee this holiday season? Drive right up and leave a comment below or express yourself on your Kidzworld profile page! Your opinion counts!