Julia Roberts was surprised by the “magical” rapport she shared with her Wonder co-star Jacob Tremblay after he transformed into character.
The Oscar-winning actress stars as the mother of Tremblay’s Auggie, a young boy with a rare medical facial deformity who is trying to fit in at a new school.
Roberts never saw the real face of her 11-year-old co-star during production and was blown away by his dedication to the role, which stems from the book of the same name penned by author R.J. Palacio.
“I spent the summer with Auggie. But we had this kind of instant rapport, which is something that Owen (Wilson) and I had,” Roberts told Cinemablend, referring to her onscreen husband. “But to have it with a child is much more of a kind of magical alchemy. Because I’m some strange woman going, ‘Oh, I love you son!’ Pulling on you. And he was just so open to my process, and he was so prepared as an actor, and so up for making it all work. You were never like, ‘Lady, what are you…’ It was such a great comfort to find.”
The Pretty Woman star was further amazed by Tremblay’s make-up and prosthetics, which took around two hours to create the “intricate and detailed” finish. And because the transformation took place before Roberts arrived to set, she would only ever greet the young actor in costume.
“I did hear from the make-up guys, that did the make-up, that he sat and was still and patient and never complained,” Roberts smiled. “I would have been like, ‘Okay, come on, people! Can we just…’ He never complained on the set, and he never complained in the chair, and that, I think, speaks to who he is as a human.”
But it was no bother to Room star Tremblay, who insisted playing Auggie was worth “every sacrifice” – including sitting still for several hours.
Wonder is due to begin hitting cinemas later this month (Nov17).