Enhancing the pedigree of The Twilight Saga: New Moon is Michael Sheen, the star of last year’s Oscar-nominee Frost/Nixon, taking on the role of Aro, the head of the Volturi vampire clan with the power to read thoughts with a touch. He spoke about concocting his characterization, and aside from author Stephenie Meyer, you can bet no one else in this youthful cast is going to share these particular influences.
“It was from Stephenie in the book,” Sheen started. “She describes Aro as having a voice like feathers, so that made me think about what would it sound like if someone had a voice like feathers. And then, as I was starting to play around with it, I reminded myself a little bit of the Blue Meanie. You remember the Blue Meanie in Yellow Submarine and the hand that goes with it? And then I was also thinking about characters from when I was a kid watching stuff that really freaked me out and the Blue Meanie really freaked me out. The Child Catcher from Chitty Chitty Bang Bang – you know, “Lollipops” and all that. I liked the idea of a character who on the surface appears to be very friendly and thinks of himself as just being a sentimental old fool, a romantic at heart, and then he wants to eat your eyes.”
Sheen is in a unique position to involve himself in this battle between vampires and werewolves – he’s been fighting on the side of the lycans throughout the Underworld saga. What are the benefits of switching sides for Twilight?
“The tailoring is so much better as a vampire,” he quipped. “I’ve been observing vampires for some time now and I finally got to give my own fang, although we don’t have fangs, do we? It was great to be on the other side for a bit.” Although he hasn’t abandoned his werewolf roots, as illustrated by his appreciation for his differing action figures. “I lose days just with my Lucian figure and my Aro figure fighting,” he joked. “They have their tea parties together. They like to fight and then they come back. I’m losing jobs because of it.”