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Elizabeth Olsen interview: 'I was in love with Michelle Pfeiffer'

By and Chris Allen
Elizabeth Olsen steps out of the shadow of older sisters Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen with a mesmerising performance in Sean Durkin's indie drama Martha Marcy May Marlene.

Olsen plays a young woman who breaks free from an abusive cult (let by John Hawkes's Patrick), only find herself struggling to wrestle together her fractured psyche when she's taken in by her sister (Sarah Paulson) and brother-in-law (Hugh Dancy).


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The 22-year-old told Digital Spy that she felt a strong affinity for the eponymous character.

"I felt like I knew her well, if that makes sense. I really connected quickly to her for some reason," she said.

Martha Marcy May Marlene
"I have no experience of anything that goes on in this movie but I had a lot of empathy for her and I really loved the fact that she wasn't just a victim. Or I believe that she shouldn't be a victim, I'm sure there is a way to play her as a victim but I didn't want to."

Olsen, who also has big roles forthcoming in Red Lights and Silent House, added that she is trying to learn from watching herself on screen.

"It's interesting to watch myself with an audience, I'm trying hard to learn from it," she said.

"That's my goal right now: to figure out how I can learn from it and figure out how much of what I think I'm doing is actually being captured.

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"I'm treating it as a learning experience right now, I might change my mind in six months, but right now I try and learn from that."

On the subject of getting starstruck, Olsen admitted that she is often lost for words in front of "athletes and celebrity chefs".

"I love watching Top Chef and all those things!" she commented.

"I just recently got very starstruck around Michelle Pfeiffer, she's the one woman who I was really in love with as a little girl. Looking at her makes me want to cry!"

Martha Marcy May Marlene debuts in UK cinemas on February 3.

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