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Mara's Recent Articles From This Summer!

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Here are some articles that I have found on Mara throughout the summer:(all from Toronto, Canada)


BY Bob Thompson

Mara Wilson turned thirteen yestarday and it showed. Wilson was taking pictures of herself at a Sutton Place Hotel Suite with Toronto Sun photograher Greg Henkenhaf's camera, and was having a riot doing it.

A few minutes later, she pretended to get serious when a fee was negotiated if the pictures appeared in The Sun.

"Okay, $15," Wilson said, settling for that high-priced rate.

She's working cheap. The in-demand young actress usually earns a great deal more.

She has been featured in major studio productions such as Mrs.Doubtfire, Matilda, and Miricle on 34th Street, since getting into the buisness nearly a decade ago.

"Not quite that long, emphasis on quite," she corrects smiling.

Wilson was in town to promote Britt Allcroft's Thomas and the Magic Railroad, which opens tomorrow.

It's a homecoming of sorts for the Burbank, CA., native. She shot a great deal of the film in Toronto last November and December and will re-unite with her on-set tutor while she stays in the city this week.

Allcroft, who says she hired Wilson for her grace and charm, created the Brit-TV kids show called Thomas The Tank Engine and Friends way back in the early 80's. Two separete programs, based on the original, came to North America. There was Thomas, The Tank Engine, and Shining Time Station, which was Wilson's favourite.

For her movie, Allcroft went back to the original concept, combining both, but highlighting the same sort of whimsy that made all TV shows hits among the junior jumper set.

So, in the film, there is a human world of Shining Time Station, and the talking train world- Thomas and the Tank Engine and Friends-on the Island of Sodor.

Wilson plays the grandaughter of lonely Burnett Stone(Peter Fonda). Alex Baldwin portrays the miniture magical conductor who loses the sparkle dust. All three try to find the dust and a magical railroad during the course of the kids' actions.

Generally, Wilson was thrilled with the just-for-fun results, but suggests that the movie also delas with more serious things like "friendship, family, and responsibiliy."

Meanwhile, she'll be considering some new roles as she prepares for Grade 8 at her" regular public school in Burbank."

"I'm not getting a big head there or anything," she says being sort of a celebrity there.

"At school, some people say I'm a snob, others followed me around for awhile, but mostly they don't bother me or don't care."


Regular school means that she's a regular kid, although she confessed to not really getting into the usual " Britney Spears and Backstreet Boys" kind of pop. "That's my sister, " she says of 7-year old Anna.

In fact, in her bedroom, Wilson said she has "too many posters of kittens and a Matilda poster" from her starring role in that picture, which makes her "feel like a real egomaniac."

Then she remembered something else. "I'm an Internet junkie," said Wilson, who sometimes visits a site dedicated to her. "I signed on the message board once, and half the people didn't believe me, and the other half did and went crazy."

And what will the new teenager do for her birthday later in the day?

"Go out and get dinner or something,"she says suddenly grinning again." And," she added enthusiastically," I'm proabably getting my ears pierced."


By Brenda Bouw

Mara Wilson can be forgiven for whining. It is her 13th birthday, an d instead of having a party with her friends, the acteress is in a Toronto hotel room talking to reporters more than twice her age about her lastest film, Thomas and the Magic Railroad, which opens today.

"I'm tired, very, very tired," says Wilson, who curls up on th couch and requests a coffee "or some kind of caffine" from her handlers.

She is handed another coke and continues lamenting how she will spend her first day as an official teenager.

"Interviews, interviews and more interviews, then go out to dinner," Wilson says. "I shouldn't whine...later I would like to get my ears pierced. That would be nice."

Wilson is used to balencing between childhood and adulthood. She has been acting since age five, when she landed her first film role, as Robin Williams' daughter in the Hollywood hit, Mrs.Doubtfire, and has been in everything from Melrose Place to Miracle on 34th Street.

"People say I am mature for my age," says Wilson, wearing a striped red T-shirt and matching grey skirt and tights. "In some ways I am mature and some ways I am not." When I get out with my friends I act really crazy and silly, more five than thirteen."

Part of Wilson's mature side is reflected in her taste in music, which she describes as bands from the 1980's-"I don't remember the names"-as well as one of today's hot, but grown-up pop bands, No Doubt.

"People think I am weird because I don't listen to Britney Spears and I don't listen to boy bands. My friends do and my sister does, which is kind of strange. I have pictures of kittens and she has pictures of Britney."

WIlson is getting ready to redecorate those bedroom walls, saying maturing from an adolescent to a teenager also means growing in the type of roles she wants to play.

Instead of cutsey parts in such films as Miracle on 34th Street, and Thomas and the Magic Railroad, Wilson would like to play a character with a little bit more edge.

"People are always saying I am disgustingly cute and play these nausiatingly sweet roles. It was fun for awhile, but I think it would be fun to play someone who is more of a brat," Wilson says, adding she does not have a part like that lined up yet-"at least not that I know of."

Wilson has an agent, but says that many of the scrpits she chooses are looked over by her father, who works in the electronics industry. Wilson also has three older brothers and a younger sister, ages 7-21. Her mother died of cancer when she was about eight years old,a subject Wilson refuses to discuss.

In an interview she gave at age 10, Wilson said her mother warned her early on that acting would be a difficult job, but did not discourage her.

She became interested in acting after watching an older brother do it. SHe started off by appearing in an Oscar Mayer Lunchables add, and later did some spots for Bank of America, Texaco and Marshall's before landing the Mrs.Doubtfire part.

"I am very critical of myself in every film," she says. "Sometimes I think I shouldn't have been looking like that, or I should've said something different..."

Wilson daydreams about the day she will leave acting- "I am going to stand on the top of a building and yell 'I'm done'"-but says she is not sure she will ever want out.

"People are always asking young teenagers 'What do you want to do with your life? ' They say, 'I don't know, let me listen to my music.' That's like me."

In the fall, she enters Grade 8 at her junior high school in Burbank, Calif.

Wilson says some of the kids in her school are also actors, and most of those who are not aren't interested in those who are.

"A lot of people really don't care," she says. "Some people kind of avoid me, or are rude to me because they think I am a snot. Maybe it is jealousy, but I am not sure yet."


Mara Wilson co-stars with Thomas the Tank Engine in the part animation, part live-action movie Thomas and the Magic Raildroad. At age six, Wilson was cast as the little girl in Mrs. Doubtfire and has since starred in Matilda and the remake of Miracle of 34th Street. FamilyWonder talked with Wilson about filming Thomas, being an actor, and pursuing her latest passion, Harry Potter.

FamilyWonder: Do you think Thomas and the Magic Railroad has anything to teach kids?

Mara Wilson: Yes, a lot about friendship and working together. And that there's a sense of imagination when you're young that's just kind of magical.

FamilyWonder: Was it challenging interacting with Thomas the Tank Engine because he wasn't a human character?

Mara Wilson: When we were supposed to be talking to Thomas, we were really just talking to a little piece of paper or a stick, while the assistant director read the lines of off camera. So it was kind of hard but you just had to use your imagination.

FamilyWonder: You worked with some veteran actors on this movie, like Peter Fonda, Alec Baldwin, and Didi Conn. Had you met any of them before?

Mara Wilson: I met most of them at the first reading of the script, and I don't think I really knew who half of them were. We were just sitting down, and there was just some guy or woman over there reading the script. Then I'd find out later it was Peter Fonda.

FamilyWonder: Now that you're done filming, are you enjoying being part of promoting the movie?

Mara Wilson: It's okay but it's just exhausting. I've been traveling to so many places. I was in England and Scotland and England again. And then I'm going to Phoenix and I think San Francisco, then I'm going to Toronto. I'm going to do some interviews on my birthday, actually.

FamilyWonder: Do you think you're going to spend your life as an actor?

Mara Wilson: I'm probably going to be doing something different when I get older. I want to be a writer, but I'm not sure how that's going to work out, so there are a couple of other things I'm considering.

FamilyWonder: When you're not making a movie, what do you like to do?

Mara Wilson: Reading, writing, swimming, watching movies, going on the internet--I am such an internet junkie! Just hanging out with my friends, going shopping with my friends, traveling, watching TV, things like that.

FamilyWonder: Have you read the Harry Potter books?

Mara Wilson: You don't know how many people have asked me that! I don't care, I love them. I'm a really huge fan.

FamilyWonder: Some people think you should play the character of Hermione in the Harry Potter movie.

Mara Wilson: Yes! People kept telling me that when I was filming Thomas. And I wanted to be really badly but I'm not British. At this rate I would do one of the ghosts because I desperately want to be in it.

FamilyWonder: Do you have a favorite book?

Mara Wilson: I have several. Harry Potter obviously. Another favorite is To Kill a Mockingbird. One of my favorite books is Catherine, Called Birdy about a kid growing up in the Middle Ages, and it's really funny. It seems like nobody's heard of it although it did win a Newbery honor. It's great book.