Elizabeth Olsen talks Liberal Arts

The other Olsen is back

MOST POPULAR

‘I don’t think when I was 19 I was as confident as she is,’ says 23-year-old Elizabeth Olsen (younger sister of twins Mary-Kate and Ashley, 26) of her character in Liberal Arts, the new indie hit from How I Met Your Mother’s Josh Radnor.
Liberal Arts follows called Jesse (played by Radnor – who also writes and directs), a 35-year-old college admissions officer who falls for a college student (coincidentally) named Elizabeth (played by Olsen). Following the string of rather dark films that have gone onto Olsen's CV recently (2011’s Martha Marcey May Marlene, in which she played the victim of a cult, or Silent House where she was a child abuse victim), the upbeat, feel-good nature of Liberal Arts proved a welcome relief.
‘I really didn’t want to play any more tortured characters!’ she told ELLE. ‘This movie only promotes goodness. Before I was even cast Josh and I read through every scene and we enjoyed being around each other. I just wanted to say lines that were fun. It’s a nice film and it made me laugh.’
The Liberal Arts Elizabeth and the real life Elizabeth do share some traits, according to the actress: both are confident and forthright – ‘I’ve always had a strong opinion and maybe come off as abrasive at times with my opinions’ – but that's where the similarities end. On-screen Elizabeth likes classical music, Twilight and being called by her nickname, Zibby. Olsen prefers folk (‘Antlers, Fleet foxes and I started listening to Gillian Welch, who I love') and more mature reading matter (‘I’ve never read a young adult novel in my life. I never even read Harry Potter. I jumped from Huck Fin to Fitzgerald').
And as for a nickname? ‘Just Lizzy,’ Olsen says. Before adding, somewhat sheepishly, ‘…and Lizard. That’s what my mom and my best friend call me.’
Liberal Arts is in cinemas from today, 5 October 2012.
ADVERTISEMENT - CONTINUE READING BELOW

Watch the trailer for Liberal Arts;

Read Next: