“Ender’s Game” isn’t due in Hall H until Thursday afternoon, but writer-director Gavin Hood, producer Roberto Orci, and stars Hailee Steinfeld and Asa Butterfield came out to check out the “Ender’s Game” Fan Experience and to talk a little bit about their experience making the film, expectations for the release on November 1st, and the thrill of being in San Diego for Comic Con.
Based on Orson Scott Card’s novel, “Ender’s Game” focuses on young Ender Wiggin (Butterfield), a typical kid living on Earth who is chosen by the International Fleet to attend Battle School in space and learn to defend mankind from the invading Formics. While it does come with the thrill of a good guy versus bad guy predicament, “Ender’s Game” is also so much more than that, dealing with some very mature and even disturbing scenarios that could be challenging to adapt to a family-friendly film. Hood insists that he’s not treading lightly when it comes to the severity of the situation in Card’s book:
“Kids aren’t stupid. I have kids. They ask you questions that show that they are smart and I think a lot of movies condescend to kids, think that they’re not smart. Kids are smart. Kids are smart enough to know that goodies versus baddies is a very basic idea and that most of us are a combination of good and not so good, and so to have a film where these young characters are fully fleshed out, human beings with their own struggles in a spectacular environment is really cool.”
One of those characters is Steinfeld’s Petra Arkanian and while Petra doesn’t get all that much backstory in the book, Steinfeld did get the opportunity to develop some of her own while making the film:
“By the time you meet my character, you don’t see much of it, but a lot of the backstory has to do with a lot of the other students in the Battle School just being away from home, being away from your mom and dad, and your family, and sort of having to fend for yourself out there, not knowing who’s on your side and who’s not on your side.”
You can learn more about Petra from Steinfeld, find out what it took to finance “Ender’s Game” independently, and hear what Butterfield would dress up as should he hit the convention center floor in the video interview below.