Susan Sarandon was getting over a cold when she called to discuss her new film "Enchanted," but the 61-year-old actress hardly phoned it in during the interview. OK, well, technically, she phoned it in because she was calling from L.A., er, on the phone - but you get my drift.
In the film (which is part animation and part live action), Sarandon plays a wicked queen out to destroy the pretty princess (played by Amy Adams), who had just managed to take a not-so-fairy tale detour to New York City. (By the way, "Enchanted" also stars Patrick Dempsey, whom I also spoke to, and opens Nov. 21. Check out my story in Sunday's Ticket+. And see my colleague Carla Meyer's review in Scene on Nov. 21.)
Anyway, even though Sarandon was probably on her millionth interview and nursing a sore throat ("Forgive me if I start coughing"), she gamely chatted about the film as well as some upcoming roles, including one in "The Lovely Bones."
That Peter Jackson-directed film, scheduled for a 2008 release, is based on the Alice Sebold novel about a young girl who watches from the afterlife as her family deals with her brutal murder and rape at the hands of a neighborhood killer.
Sarandon plays the deceased girl's grandmother and, while some Hollywood types might not like the idea of sliding into a new age range, Sarandon says she was thrilled.
"This is my first grandma role - I'm pretty happy about that."
In fact, she says, she's pretty pleased about how her career's been going lately. True, there are fewer leading roles for women of a certain age (yes, even Oscar-winning women; Sarandon snagged a Best Actress statue for 1995's "Dead Man Walking"), but supporting roles can be just as rewarding.
"There are some very rich parts out there - of course, they're not all leading parts, but I don't feel compromised," Sarandon says.
"I would rather play an interesting part than a boring lead," says the actress, who can also be seen in the upcoming "Speed Racer." "It's actually kind of nice because, sometimes, those roles just take a few days or weeks.
"If I was just looking for a huge salary, then maybe I'd be in trouble."