Julia Stiles reflects on playing against the terrifying character Isabelle Fuhrman in Orphan: The First Murder

In an exclusive interview, Julia Stiles and Isabelle Fuhrman showed Looper behind the scenes of Orphan: The First Murder to share some of the film’s making secrets. Significantly, Fuhrman noted, she became Esther again, not through the wonders of digital rejuvenation, but through creative camera tricks, including forced perspective, as well as the use of two young doppelgangers. Sly creative methods aside, Stiles admitted she was amazed at how easily Furman pulled off her terribly manipulative character.

“It blew my mind. It really is. I was sitting on the set, watching her work and thinking, “Oh my God.” It’s not just about making her shorter or doing camera tricks to make her look smaller,” Styles Looper said. “It was that her voice and her mannerisms felt like a child to her, and the movie hangs on that because she has to fool everyone around her, but it worked really well.”

While Fuhrman used various practical means to make her appear as tall as the supposedly 9-year-old Esther, Stiles said she had to wear lifts to widen the difference in their heights. “I wish I wore stilts! It would be less humiliating than wearing those thigh-high leather platform boots that were getting bigger. We call them “Gene Simmons boots,” Stiles said with a laugh, referring to the legendary KISS bassist’s platforming.

Orphan: The First Murder, directed by William Brent Bell, is in select theaters and is streaming exclusively on Paramount+.

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