- Associated Press - Tuesday, May 17, 2016

CANNES, France (AP) - Lily-Rose Depp and Stephanie “Soko” Sokolinski have a turbulent relationship in their new film “The Dancer,” but off camera, the two actresses are friends enjoying the Cannes Film Festival. Sokolinski even helped get Depp the job.

The actresses both play dancers in the feature debut by writer-director Stephanie Di Giusto, which screened at the Cannes festival this week.

“It’s her first film and being able to present it here, I’m almost more happy for her,” Sokolinski said of her 16-year-old co-star. “I’m like, ‘Oh my god, I’m so proud of you,’ and she’s like, ‘I’m proud of you too,’ and I’m like, ‘No, but I’m proud of you, it’s your first film, you’re in Cannes, it’s amazing.’”

“We’re so proud of our director because we know how hard she worked on it,” added Depp, daughter of Johnny Depp and Vanessa Paradis. “She’s been researching and working on this for five years before we even started shooting.”

“The Dancer” tells the story of American dance innovator Loie Fuller (Sokolinski), who found fame dancing at Paris’ Folies Bergere in the late 1800s, and the sacrifices she made for her art. Depp plays American dancer Isadora Duncan, a manipulative young performer who seduces the older dancer for her own gains.

“It’s so obvious that we’re portraying two very, very different ways to approach art,” Sokolinski said. “One being how Loie approaches it, which is no matter what, it’s vital, I have to do it or I’ll die… I’ll have bruises and I’ll have sore muscles and I won’t be able to walk and it doesn’t matter, I’ll burn my eyes, I’ll do everything it takes. And then you have the new generation that comes in that’s effortless and charismatic and beautiful and completely enchanting.”

Sokolinski said she was similarly enchanted with her young co-star, whom she referred to “The Dancer” director for an audition.

“There’s not a lot of 16-year-olds that can move like this and that can be so effortless and magnetic and she definitely had that and could embody that in such a great way,” Sokolinski said. “So, our dynamic was just very friendly and I was very stunned to witness her do her baby steps into acting, but already being such a magnetic legend.”

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