Photo Credit: Jan Thijs
Mirror mirror on the wall, who's the wickedest stepmother of them all? In director Tarsem Singh's upcoming (and still untitled) Snow White film, it's Julia Roberts. The first photos of America's Sweetheart as the vile Evil Queen have arrived (check out one above and another on EW.com), and they hint at a side of Roberts not often seen on film. Indeed, Lily Collins, who plays Snow White in the movie, says viewers should prepare themselves for something unusual: disliking Roberts.
"She gets in character and stays there," Collins tells Entertainment Weekly. "She's 'Julia' and graceful and an amazing woman, but on-screen, when she turns... the way she's playing the queen, people feel really bad for Snow White."
Roberts, 43, has made a career out of being likable. But this character is no Pretty Woman or Erin Brockovich. Singh says he wanted Snow White's evil stepmother to be schizophrenic and willing to commit irreprehensible acts -- including trying to murder her snowy white stepdaughter -- in order to stay in power.
That doesn't mean the Evil Queen is willing to get her hands dirty, though -- or even show her nasty side to the public. Singh's Snow White film sticks pretty close to the original tale, which means there's going to be a huntsman -- in this case, Nathan Lane -- who can't bring himself to murder the sweet Snow White. That's when White books it into the forest and enlists the help of seven outcast dwarves to help her reclaim her late father's throne.
The 22-year-old Collins -- known for playing Sandra Bullock's daughter in The Blind Side and for being singer Phil Collins' real-life daughter -- says she has been a fan of Roberts for a very long time, and was excited to get a chance to play opposite her. She calls working with the actress an "honor," despite the fact that Julia was quite intimidating once the cameras started rolling.
"She gave me goosebumps," Collins shares with People. "She played the Evil Queen brilliantly. You forget that's really Julia because she's so good. Off camera, she's so down to earth and so sweet. We'd be shooting and she's being extremely horrible to me (in character), and once they yell cut, the first thing she says to me: 'Are you okay? I'm sorry, I hate being mean to you.'"
Relativity Media's Snow White film -- which is different from Uinversal's Snow White and the Huntsman, starring Kristen Stewart as Snow White and Charlize Theron as the Evil Queen -- is due in theaters March 16.