Dakota Fanning is standing up for strong, independent women.
The former child star takes her women's studies degree very seriously, advocating "the portrayal of women in film and culture."
"It's something I've studied and thought about a lot," she said. "It's rare to see women in a film who are not somehow validated by a male, or discusses a male, or heartbroken by a male, or end up being happy because of a male. It's interesting to think about, and it's very true.
"Of course men are part of women's lives, and that's fine. But it's important to see strong, independent women who are making their own choices and aren't completely at the mercy of men. It shouldn't be, 'Oh, does this guy love me?' It should be, 'Do I love the guy?'
"It's about both genders being equal," she says. "There's a history where when women get to a certain age in this industry, the roles become strictly the mother, the wife, or the older single woman. There should be more of a variety because there are so many different paths that humans take and they should be given a platform to be seen."
Another topic that Fanning is passionate about is the environment.
In her upcoming movie, Fanning stars as the character Dena — a wealthy young woman who becomes a little extreme in her environmental stance by funding a plot to blow up a hydroelectric dam. Ex-military member Harmon, played by Peter Sarsgaard, and radical Josh Stamos, played by Jesse Eisenberg, join her in the plan. When the plan doesn't go as expected, the team faces unexpected challenges.
"For Kelly's sake, she would want me to say that they're not 'ecoterrorists,'" said Fanning. "[Dena] doesn't know what an 'ecoterrorist' is.
"The things that people do for causes result in very small changes and sometimes you never even see any results. So for these people, they need something that's immediate that they can see."
Fanning was attracted to the film because preserving the planet is very important to the young actress.
"We can't continue to take from our planet the way we do and not give anything back," she said. "The idea of, 'Oh, but it's fine, I won't have to deal with it in my lifetime,' well, you need to think about the future generations who will havassertse to deal with it."
Night Moves opened in select U.S. theaters Friday.
Image via Wikimedia Commons