Laura Marano plays Mia in the new family comedy The War with Grandpa, which also stars Robert De Niro and Uma Thurman. The movie centers around sixth-grader Peter, played by Oakes Fegley, who ends up in a war with his grandfather Ed (De Niro) when Ed moves into Peter’s room. HollywoodLife talked EXCLUSIVELY with Laura, who revealed the heartfelt gesture De Niro did for the cast before filming.
“On the first day of filming, Bob literally wrote notes to everyone and put them in their trailers,” Laura told HollywoodLife EXCLUSIVELY. “He wrote he was ‘so excited to meet with you. Happy first day of filming.’ So I feel that in itself just completely broke the ice for someone like me who was so starstruck. I think the whole shoot kind of continued in that way. Bob is someone who definitely, even though it’s a family comedy, still takes the work seriously, but he doesn’t take himself seriously. It was a really cool experience to act alongside that.”
As Peter and Ed go at it with elaborate pranks, Laura’s character Mia is going head-to-head with her mom Sally, played by Thurman, over a boy. “Mia is your sassy teenage daughter. She is a little self-involved. She is so focused on trying to date this guy that she doesn’t notice there is a war going on between her grandfather and her brother,” Laura continued. “But what I will say is that overall there’s this really nice dynamic that comes out between Bob and Uma of, as a parent, you go through things when you’re a kid, and then when your kid is going through them, all of a sudden you have a bit of a different lens and different perspective and forget how it was when you were a kid. So Uma has that kind of moment with my character about this idea that she just needs to not lose time with her daughter and accept whoever she wants to date.”
Tensions can and often do run high between mothers and daughters during those dramatic teenage years. Laura loved being able to explore that dynamic with Uma. “It was crazy,” Laura admitted. “To be honest, we had a few scenes where we had to scream at each other. I was so intimidated. I’m like, how am I going to do this with the Uma Thurman, and it ended up being such a fun scene and such an easy scene. Overall, I feel I just had this incredible experience with not just Uma but the whole cast. It was amazing.”
In addition to her latest movie, which will be released Oct. 9, Laura also has released a brand-new EP titled YOU. She revealed the inspiration behind this latest collection of songs. “When I was working on my first EP ever, which I released last year, the Me EP, there was still more of the story I wanted to tell. Even more than that, I wanted to tell this other perspective. So that’s where I kind of came up with this idea of YOU. Once I had that idea in my head and that vision, everything slowly but surely fell into place. I was looking at music I’d written a while ago and kind of reworking a little bit to fit this new era of my music. I finished a bunch of the songs up while in quarantine, which was a very strange experience, but I think really is part of the framework of the sonics of the song, which is kind of cool. I’m excited to listen back a year from now and remember how I made certain songs, or did vocals, or did this, while we were stuck at our homes.”