Saorise Ronan on being the new Stephenie Meyer heroine(s) in ‘The Host’

Saoirse Ronan seen twice in the new Stephenie Meyer movie "The Host" Credit: Alan Markfield
Saoirse Ronan seen twice in the new Stephenie Meyer movie “The Host”
Credit: Alan Markfield

Talking to herself comes naturally to young Irish actress Saoirse Ronan, so her dual roles in “the Host” weren’t really that daunting. In the film — based on “Twilight” author Stephenie Meyer’s novel — Ronan plays a human named Melanie living in a future where alien parasites have come to earth and lodged themselves in the brains of humans, taking over their bodies and fixing the planet in the process. Melanie gets implanted, leading to the alien Wanda take over her body, but with one complication: Melanie doesn’t go away, remaining as a rather upset voice in Wanda’s head.

That means a good amount of the movie consists of Ronan having conversations with her own voiceover. “That was a big question for me when I was going into it was how we were going to do this,” Ronan says. Eventually, she and director Andrew Niccol settled on an earpiece that would transmit Ronan’s prerecorded Melanie dialogue on Niccol’s cue, something none of Ronan’s co-stars could hear. “I talk to myself so much anyway that it was just like a normal day for me,” she says. “So it was a very natural thing for me to talk to myself.”

While Meyer’s mega-hit vampire series revolved around a love triangle between a human girl, a vampire and a werewolf, she clearly felt the need to up the complexity factor for her follow-up. In “the Host,” Melanie has a boyfriend (Max Irons) from before she becomes inhabited, which becomes more of a problem when another human survivor (Jake Abel) becomes interested in Wanda — while she’s inhabiting Melanie’s body. So what exactly do we call a situation like that? It’s not exactly a love triangle anymore. “We’re saying it’s a love square,” Ronan says. “Or a love rectangle, or I think a love parallelogram is another. I quite like that one. It’s kind of impressive. So yeah, you can take your pick. As long as it has four sides, you know.”

And when it came to filling out that love parallelogram, Ronan even had some say in casting her co-stars. “I mean, obviously it wasn’t just down to me, it was more Stephenie and Andrew’s decision and the producers’, but I was delighted they asked me to come in because it was important, I guess, that we had chemistry,” she says of the process of bringing onboard Irons and Abel. “One of the things that I was very adamant about was that, OK I know that they have to be attractive-looking guys and all, but the most important thing is that they’re able to play the characters fully and really bring to life and not just be someone who’s a good-looking guy, you know? And thank God we found that with Jake and Max.”

Dueling vampires Saoirse Ronan has grown close to her “the Host” author and producer, Stephenie Meyer, since signing up to bring Meyer’s latest teen heroine from page to screen. Some might think, then, that Ronan’s choice to star in a rather un-”Twilight”-like vampire movie, “Byzantium,” might pique Meyer’s interest. “She hasn’t seen it yet, actually. I think she told me that she wants to see it, but I haven’t really talked to her too much about it,” Ronan admits. “I mean, when I said to her it was a vampire film, she was like, ‘Really?’ But I was like, ‘It’s not Twilight! It’s a different one, I swear!”

It is different indeed. From “Interview with the Vampire” director Neil Jordan, “Byzantium” offers Ronan and Gemma Arterton as bloodsucking vagabond sisters who take up residence in a rundown seaside town and open a brothel. And while Ronan’s undead teen may find herself grappling with young love and lust, there’s no love triangle to be found.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
National

Mutant worms stay sober, even on alcohol

U.S. researchers have developed "mutant worms" that do not get drunk by alcohol, a breakthrough that could lead to new treatment for people trying to quit drinking

Local

K-9 nose helps capture $150K in cocaine at…

A furry, four-legged security agent helped authorities stop an illegal cocaine shipment from sneaking past JFK customs.

National

Minnesota man asked to leave Southwest flight after…

A man and his two sons were asked to leave a Southwest Airlines flight after the man sent a tweet complaining about being treated rudely by a gate agent.

National

Man sues hospital after surprise penis amputation

An Alabama man who went in to a hospital last month for a circumcision awoke after surgery to find his penis had been amputated, his lawyer said on Thursday.

Movies

Review: Brett Ratner's big 'Hercules' movie is small…

The latest "Hercules," starring Dwayne Johnson as the half-god beefcake of Greek myth, strips its hero and tale of most of its fantastical elements.

Arts

Scientists recreate world's smallest Monet copy

Scientists have reproduced a famous Impressionist painting using nano-printing, to create what has been described as the world's smallest work of art. Reworked at the…

Television

Jerry Seinfeld is ambidextrous, and other Reddit AMA…

See some of the weirder highlights of Jerry Seinfeld's recent Reddit AMA.

Going Out

Grab a pedestrian and start dancing at What…

As a New Yorker, I’ve mastered the art of focusing my gaze straight ahead. Though it occasionally piques my interest, the absurdities that play out…

NFL

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player…

2014 NFL Fantasy Football Top 100 overall player rankings

U.S. Soccer

NYCFC announce signing of Frank Lampard

The tease of a big signing Thursday by new MLS side NYCFC ended up being one rumored for weeks. England midfielder Frank Lampard agreed to…

NBA

NBA great LeBron James sends 800 cupcake apologies…

By Kim PalmerCLEVELAND (Reuters) - NBA star LeBron James, whose recent return to the Cleveland Cavaliers in his home state of Ohio sparked a frenzy…

NFL

Jerry Reese confident with Giants, skipping countdown clocks…

Last year, Giants GM Jerry Reese installed a countdown clock in the locker room to inspire Big Blue to play in their own stadium for Super Bowl XLVIII.

Tech

Forget Wi-Fi: Li-Fi could be the future

Li-Fi technology – developed by Mexican company Sisoft – is wireless internet connectivity using specialized LED light.

Tech

Weather app Climendo might be the most accurate…

The wait for a truly accurate weather forecast could finally be over thanks to a nifty new app called Climendo.

Tech

Napkin Table puts focus off the phone and…

Michael Jan, a design student at Tunghai University in Taiwan, has invented a serviette-picnic blanket hybrid called the Napkin Table.

Style

Essie's new Color Boutique

Essie launches high-tech kiosks at major airports and malls across the country.