Inception - Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page
Inception - Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) and Ariadne (Ellen Page) © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

In Christopher Nolan’s fascinating sci-fi thriller, Inception, Leonardo DiCaprio plays a man named Dom Cobb, who has the unique ability to enter people’s dreams to steal information. But he can’t do this alone; he has a team behind him. One of the key members of the group is Ariadne, portrayed by Ellen Page, known as ‘The Architect.’ It’s her job to design and build places that could not exist in reality.

Nominated for an Academy Award as Best Actress for Juno, this isn’t Ellen Page’s first venture into the world of sci-fi, having played the role of Kitty Pryde in X-Men: The Last Stand. But this is perhaps the most unusual concept for a movie she’s ever participated in.

What is it about joining this ‘dream team’ that interested your character, Ariadne?

Inception - Ellen Page, Leonardo DiCaprio © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.
Ariadne (Ellen Page) and Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio) © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

(What they do) isn’t necessarily legal, but she is propelled by an intellectual curiosity that makes her unable to pull herself away from such a unique opportunity.

When Cobb brings Ariadne into his world, so to speak, she immediately displays a natural ability to think outside the box and broaden her mind enough to facilitate what he’s trying to accomplish. She ends up becoming even more involved in the job as she discovers what’s really going on with Cobb and learns about things he can’t control. But, despite the fears that arise, she wants to try to help him in order for the team to succeed.

What interested you about doing this movie?

I was excited that Chris had written an awesome role for a young woman who is intelligent and comfortable in her own skin. She is thrust into this completely new environment and unusual situation and deals with it very eloquently. She can very much hold her own, especially in a group that’s a bit of a boys’ club.

Ariadne gets involved in some pretty heavy stuff; I was wondering what subject matter would turn you on and maybe even make you risk your life because you’re so interested in it?

Inception - Ellen Page, Michael Caine, Leonardo DiCaprio, Wally Pfister, Christopher Nolan © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.
Ellen Page, Michael Caine, Leonardo DiCaprio, director of photography Wally Pfister and director Christopher Nolan on set © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

I guess, probably, the environmental movement, and the sustainability of our planet, which freaks me out. It definitely scares me, but I try not to be scared and just (be) present. But that would probably be it.

What was it like working with Chris Nolan?

I am such a fan of Chris’, so the idea of being a part of this film was very exciting. And I was blown away by the script: it was like nothing I had ever read. I completely disappeared into it, and when I finished, I was literally sweating.

It was so conceptually original and so incredibly moving, with a powerful emotional spine that one can really connect to. It was phenomenal to work with a filmmaker who is able to create entire worlds, things you’ve never seen before, in such an amazing way.

Did you get to do any of your own stunts?

Inception - Christopher Nolan, Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.
Director Christopher Nolan with Leonardo DiCaprio and Ellen Page on set © Warner Bros. Entertainment, Inc.

All the stunts I got to do on this film were an absolute blast. I love that stuff. As we were filming, I kept thinking that I couldn’t wait to see it all come together because I think it’s going to be really exciting, and I hope people go and enjoy the ride as much as I did.

How would you describe this movie to your friends?

I’d say that I would want them not to ask questions and just go see it. I’m the last person to tell my friends to go see something I’m in; I couldn’t care less if friends of mine never saw anything I’m in. But this is definitely a film that I’m just so thrilled about, and I’m more thrilled about the fact that everybody seems so excited.

I just feel so grateful to be in a Christopher Nolan film, let alone this film. I love how Chris (kept this movie secret). ­I’m so young that I’ve been in a time when everything is on the internet and sometimes I see a trailer and I’m thrilled that I’ve just seen the whole movie without paying for it (she laughs).

I actually go the route of just don’t ask and don’t sniff around. Just have an absolute blast and an exciting, cerebral time when you see it.

Judy Sloane

Judy is Film Review Online's regular Los Angeles based reporter.