Filmmaker Brian Percival's new project "The Book Thief", based on the best-selling novel by Markus Zusak, won't hit U.S. theaters until November 15, but fans can get a sneak peek at it through newly-released photos. The images offer film fanatics a first look at its young lead star, French-Canadian actress Sophie Nelisse, who draws admiration from Percival and veteran co-star Geoffrey Rush.
"It was quite uncanny, this kid. I was taken right away. It was this mixture of naive innocence but at the same time she's actually quite ballsy. You feel that you can get kneed in the groin at any point," the director said about her young lead star. "Fortunately, she just nailed it," Percival said about Nelisse's portrayal of the film's young heroine Liesel Meminger, acting opposite much older and experienced thespians such as Rush and Emily Watson.
Rush, who already has the triple crown of acting (Academy Award, Tony Award and Emmy Award) in his credentials, was in praise of his young co-star. "I've had the opportunity in my career to have played opposite some extraordinary actresses and Sophie is just a true, natural original. She's a gifted performer who has an instinctive and highly creative rapport with the lens," he gushed.
Rush, along with Watson, plays foster parents to Nelisse's Liesel, who discovers the joy of reading so much so that she would then resort to stealing them. Percival says Nelisse is the perfect person to play such a vibrant character caught up in the period of Nazi Germany.