John Krasinksi and Millicent Simmonds (‘A Quiet Place Part II’) on Regan’s ’emotional journey’ of turning a disability into a superpower [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW]

“Regan has a very emotional journey, it’s very difficult for her to move on,” says Millicent Simmonds of her character in “A Quiet Place Part II.” It’s no accident that the actress is at the center of this story. Writer and director John Krasinkski said no to making a sequel several times until he had the idea to use Simmonds as the lead. Watch the exclusive video interview above.

Krasinski refers to Simmonds as his muse, and he is clearly in awe of the young performer’s talent. “As a person, she was able to hold so much of the hugely thematic things we were doing,” he explains, “she was able to articulate them in such an unbelievably true artistic expression.” Simmonds was excited to jump back into the character and collaborate with Krasinski again. She notes that after a harmonious time on the first movie, she “felt like we know each other a little more, what we expect from each other. This is his vision and I trust him completely.”

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Simmonds’ expressiveness is a vital ingredient of the story, because the film is just as concerned with the emotional bonds of the main characters as it is with showcasing the aliens hunting them down by sound. Krasinski believes that if the first film was about the promises parents make to their children, this follow-up movie dives into “the recourse the kids take after knowing that their parents aren’t superheroes.” Simmonds’ Regan discovers how to become her own hero during this sequel, without the help of her mother. “That’s adolescence,” explains Krasinkski, “that’s coping.”

The young actress confesses that it’s “a big honor” to portray this particular hero’s journey. “This story is actually very personal for me,” notes Simmonds who, like her character, is deaf. Regan discovers how to turn her disability into a superpower that can defeat the inhuman foes stalking humanity. The movie offers the rare opportunity to tell a story that’s “not just about their disability,” describes the actress. “It’s about power, self-confidence, the ability to overcome a vulnerability and let it become your strength. I think it helps other people aspire for the same.”

After such a monumental evolution of her character in this film, Simmonds admits that she hopes Regan can continue on and save the world in the future. Though her hopes for a sequel also contain much simpler joys: “I hope she would go to a spa,” Simmonds jokes, “she deserves it!”

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