Three years ago, Anne Hathaway had the film equivalent of a coronation with "The Princess Diaries," one of her very first movies.
She's now back in theaters, reprising her role as Princess Mia in "The Princess Diaries Two: Royal Engagement."
"I was surprised when I found out we were going to be doing a sequel," Hathaway tells The Early Show co-anchor Hannah Storm. "But affter seeing it, it seems like a natural progression, because when you're younger, it's all about how idealistic you are and how much you want to help the world. As you get older, you have to deal with real, and often unfair, facts and realities."
In this movie, Princess Mia must become queen, but the law of the land states she must get married before accepting the crown.
A parade of suitors tries to win her heart, leading to lots of complications that give Hathaway a chance to set boundries, develop self-esteem, and show her character's empowerment as a young woman. In the end, of course, her wildest dreams come true.
Hathaway notes, "She has a whole life she never thought ever existed for her. In the first film, she has to come to terms with it and accept she's good enough to be what everyone else says she might be. But in the second film, it's about her actually needing to prove it and saying, you know, everybody has put a lot of faith in me over the years. Now I must do it."
Although she is already a college graduate, Mia has a lot of learning left to do, as she begins a crash course in Genovia's customs, history and laws under the instruction of her loving grandmother and staunchest supporter, Queen Clarisse, played by Julie Andrews.
Working with Andrews was for Hathaway like getting the royal treatment, particularly in the scene when, even though an earlier surgery took her singing voice away.
"She is divine," Hathaway says, "I mean, you had 300-pound grips in the corner crying, because there she was. It was Julie. It was every child's memory that you've ever had, seeing that person do what she does best, which is interpret a song. And the warmth, it's just magic. What she exudes is something else. I was so excited, because I was the girl she was singing to. So it was the best day of work ever, actually. It was two days, I got so sit on the couch and get my own personal concert. It was cool."
Of course, Hathaway also got to wear incredible gowns and jewels, something she says was "frustrating, because I was on a diet for four months to make sure they all looked right."
Though it was not fun for her, a fall down the stairs she took in one scene provided some laughs for the rest of the crew. "Actually, it was great. It was so classic," Hathaway. "I thought Garry was going to have to include it in the movie. It's probably going to be in the DVD."
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