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The next big thing: 'Willow' star Erin Kellyman teams up with her role model in the MCU

In Willow, Erin Kellyman feels like she’s closest to the character.

This fall, the British actress will be featured in Ron Howard 1988 in the Disney+ series reboot of Jade’s fantasy adventure of the same name. This is a character written especially for her by Jonathan Kasdan, whom she has worked with 2018 Solo: A Star Wars Story — Kellyman’s breakthrough role as the ruthless and elusive resistance fighter Enfys Nest.

“I didn’t know he’d even remember me,” the actress says, “let alone remember the character.” Watch After Willow‘s script (November premiere24 on Disney+), Kellyman says she immediately fell in love with Jed — a strong, taciturn man in training for knighthood with a fierce devotion to her loved ones and her kingdom. “I think if I had grown up where she grew up, I might have been exactly like her. [And] I don’t think I’m like her now in every way, and I’m trying to be that. She’s very brave.”

Willow picks up more than a decade after the events of the original film, as dark forces siege the land of Tir Asleen once again. At the heart of the show is the journey of three women — the passionate but sometimes reckless Princess Kit (Ruby Cruz), the infatuated but determined Dove (Ellie Bamber), and the brave and dedicated Jed.

“Among Eileen’s many talents, one of the qualities that is really at the forefront is her ability to remain silent, which is almost something I’ve never seen before,” Kasdan Say. “She can respond in an intimate and sensual way and communicate by looking at you.”

Over the past few years, the actress has continued to roam Way The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (as Carrie Morgenthau) and David Lowery’s Medieval Fantasy The Green Knight and 2022 adapted from Les Miserables . It’s surreal for her to be in the MCU, Kellyman, 11, said she was still processing.

“I’m a huge Marvel fan, and my sister is obsessed with the movies and watches them religiously,” Kellyman said of Marvel. “I don’t know when it’s going to sink in. It hasn’t. It’s a very strange thing to work with someone you’ve admired for a long time. It’s one of the only industries where you can work with your role model, which is Very intimidating, but also a huge blessing.”

Erin Kellyman “The ability to keep silent is almost something I’ve never seen before,” saysWillow Screenwriter Co-producer Jonathan Kasdan Courtesy of AMANDA SEARLE/DISNEY+.

Going forward, Kellyman hopes to continue doing what she’s doing – playing characters and telling stories that bring new things to the table. “I’ve always wanted and still want to play roles that I didn’t feel I grew up with so I could give it to people who might not have seen themselves [on screen],” the actress said. “I’ve met young girls who’ve seen my roles and it’s been so exciting, it’s been the highlight of my career. I want to keep doing that.

“Then, selfish ,” she added, “I do also want to play roles that are so far away from me that I don’t have experience in that field. Just to keep me on my toes. “

This story first appeared in November Issue of The Hollywood Reporter Magazine. 008998 Click here to subscribe.

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