Kevin Smith and Daughter Harley Quinn Smith Talk Yoga Hosers, Fatherly Advice, and Johnny Depp’s Pancakes
We’ve been intrigued by Kevin Smith’s upcoming weird teen superhero/yoga movie, Yoga Hosers, since last year, and it is finally premiering at Sundance this weekend. As you may know, it stars Smith’s sixteen-year-old daughter, Harley Quinn, her real-life BFF since kindergarten, Lily-Rose Depp (as well as Lily-Rose’s dad – some guy named Johnny) as Canadian teenagers that use the power of yoga to fight evil monsters trying to keep them from a high school party. It’s the second in Smith’s “True North” trilogy that started with Tusk and will end with Moose Jaws.
The father-daughter duo recently did an awesome interview with The Hollywood Reporter (part of which you can watch in the video above) where they talked about what it was like to be working together. Harley sees Yoga Hosers going to Sundance as a “full-circle” moment. She says:
My dad brought Clerks to Sundance 22 years ago, and that’s when his career started. So it’s cool to think that this is where I can start mine.
Indeed, this does seem to be the kind of film that, despite its slightly-crazy premise, could put both Harley and Lily-Rose on the map. Smith was excited to make the heroes of his film two teen girls, thinking that a movie like this starring girls at this age was long overdue, especially since Hollywood usually casts “teens” with actors pushing thirty. Citing their casting as his biggest victory in making the film, he says:
I got the chance to put two teen girls together on a poster. That’s not the way they sell shit now.
So, what was it like for Harley to be directed by her dad for the first time?
There was a boy…My character sees him in a romantic light. And my dad would say things like, ‘You need to get closer to him. Closer. Nope, closer.’ So that was weird.
That would be weird! As for Smith, he was thrilled when Harley revealed that she’d like to try acting, whereas originally she was a bassist:
When she wanted to do music, I could only take her to gigs and buy her shit, but that’s about it. Then I was like, ‘You like acting? I know a thing or two about that!’
He says his daughter and Depp’s daughter brought a wonderful, natural presence to the film, as well as an instinct for when things weren’t quite right:
After we shot a scene, I would bring them over to watch their takes, and they would immediately see what they needed to do differently. Nobody wants to make sure that they look better and sound better more than 15-year-old girls.
I love how close Smith and his daughter seem, and I also love that it seems to be physically impossible for Smith not to curse in front of her. When asked if he toned it down on set, he replied, “I couldn’t say ‘cocksucker’ as much.”
Still, it’s clear he’s proud of her, and I’m heartened by the fact that he thought it important to put female characters front and center this time out, and that it’s being marketed that way and not as “a Johnny Depp movie.”
Are you looking forward to seeing what these film newcomers can do? Will you be going to see Yoga Hosers when it’s released?
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