Get ready because here comes Quvenzhané Wallis. One day she was just your average five-year-old living in Louisiana, but then she snagged a role in a movie, a movie that would later go on to play to adoring crowds at the Sundance Film Festival and get picked up by Fox Searchlight for a theatrical run.
In Beasts of the Southern Wild, Wallis leads as Hushpuppy, a young girl living with her father in an area known as the Bathtub, a small bayou community cut off from the mainland. When a storm blows in, ravaging Hushpuppy’s home and devastating the region, a small group of Bathtub residents insist on sticking it out and attempting to rebuild despite a mandatory evacuation. With her home in ruins, her father’s health fading and her mother long gone, it’s up to Hushpuppy to get herself through these trying times.
Singled out for her powerful imagination, her understanding of right and wrong, and incredible fierceness, Wallis topped a list that grew to about 4,000 candidates. Now at eight-years-old, her first full feature is in the can and about to debut for audiences in select theaters. In honor of Beasts of the Southern Wild’s June 27th limited release, Wallis sat down to remember the life-changing experience.