Elle Fanning has had a busy year, and says starring in J.J. Abrams' new film, "Super 8" was like starring in two films simultaneously since there is a movie within the movie.
The movie takes place in a small town in Ohio in 1979. A group of youngsters witness a train crash while making a zombie movie on their Super 8 camera. Following the crash, disappearances and other strange events begin to take place in town.
The 13-year-old actress got to experience first love and experiment in filmmaking while on the set of the Steven Spielberg-produced film. The young stars actually wrote and starred in their own zombie movie, which will be aired during the credits.
"We filmed it with the Super 8 camera and whenever we had any breaks between the real movie, we would write the scripts for 'The Case,' as it's called, and we would take out our pencils and write all the lines and stage directions and hand them to J.J. [Abrams]," Fanning told OnTheRedCarpet.com. "We were so proud. It was fun to have that be part of the movie, so you'll have to stay for the credits to see it!"
Fanning saw her character Alice as being tougher than the other boys in the movie and felt that she agreed to run around making a movie to get away from her absent father.
"She's a lot stronger and tougher than the other boys in the movie," Fanning said. "I think it's because she grew up without a mom and her dad hasn't really been there for her - she had to grow up to survive, really. When she accepts to do this movie with the boys, it's not because 'Oh I really want to be in this movie,' it's more of an escape from her father."
Fanning also didn't see the movie as being a zombie movie within an alien movie. The young actress said that the movie is more about the relationships - and love - between the characters than the science fiction happening around them.
"She doesn't want to spend the whole summer with [her father], that's for sure, and I think that's the same for Joe, he's sort of escaping his father to come do the movie as well - that's how they bond," Fanning said. "It's like a first love! It's like that connection that you'll never forget and your parents always tell you about. And that's what this movie is - it's about relationships more than anything else."
One of Fanning's earliest roles was alongside Sean Penn in the 2001 movie "I Am Sam." She played a younger version of her older sister Dakota Fanning's character. Elle recently appeared in Sofia Coppola's film "Somewhere" opposite Stephen Dorff.
Dakota Fanning graduated from high school last week and previously worked with "Super 8" producer Steven Spielberg in the 2005 film, "War of the Worlds," opposite Tom Cruise.
Watch the trailer for "Super 8" below.