Coming off the success of “If I Stay,” Chloë Grace Moretz now joins the cast of Columbia Pictures’ new action-thriller “The Equalizer” as Teri – a young girl who has been forced into a life of intimidation and terror. After meeting with McCall (Denzel Washington), her story will reawaken in him a desire for justice.
For Moretz, it’s easy to see that the title role is perfect for Washington. “He’s so Denzel in the way he does his job,” she says, “McCall can be the most sweet, charming guy, with a huge smile on his face – and the next minute, he’s a killer, and you’re thinking, ‘WHOA! That happened quickly!’”
Of her role as Teri, the young actress says, “When I first heard that the character is a prostitute I thought that it would be a `Taxi Driver’ type of role – pushing the boundaries a bit. But I was surprised. The role doesn’t glorify prostitution nor make it cotton-candy. You never see her in the actual act of prostitution. The focus isn’t on her profession but who she is as a person. You see that there is still a spark in her eye and that she yearns for something greater and if she can get out of this scary world, she could go on to a normal life. That’s what I loved about the character – this inner hope that was built into her story.”
Moretz says that inner hope is the basis of the bond that Teri forms with McCall. “He sees this dream in her,” she says. “It’s like there are two panes of glass – you have this terrified little girl, and right in front of it, a girl who’s been thrust into a terrifying world, putting on the face of a total badass to survive.”
Denzel Washington says that Teri, too, has a gift for looking beyond that first pane of glass. “She’s in the business of reading men – whether it’s a natural gift or she’s developed it through her profession,” Washington says. “Not to say she sees right through him, but she can see the pain, she can see the hurt.”
“The first time of meeting him, she cracks his code,” says Moretz. “She looks him right in the eyes. She notices his OCD tics – turning his book a hundred times, moving his stuff around. But it’s incredibly charming to her, to see someone who cares so much about things, when everyone around her is just going through the motions.”
Once she had the role, Moretz researched the character’s background. “There are girls who have been brought into rings from all over – from Russia, from Scandinavia,” she says. “I went to an amazing organization called Children of the Night – girls from all over America call a hotline number and they’re off the streets and in a home that cares for them. I didn’t want to exploit these girls – I’m an actor portraying a role – but as a girl, I wanted to understand. Meeting those girls not only helped me to be Teri truthfully and show who she is, but it allowed me, as a 16-year-old girl, to feel grateful and to put a spotlight on the organization.”
Last year, Moretz starred as Carrie White in the remake of the cult classic “Carrie,” alongside Julianne Moore; and reprised her role as fan favorite Hit-Girl in “Kick Ass 2,” the sequel to Matthew Vaughn’s cult-classic film, Kick-Ass.” Her breakout role as ‘Hit-Girl’ in “Kick-Ass,” followed by a starring role in Matt Reeves’ remake of “Let Me In,” landed her on TIME Magazine’s prestigious Top 10 Performances of the Year list, as well as, the New York Times Best Performances of 2010 list.
Moretz also starred with Sir Ben Kingsley in Martin Scorsese’s critically acclaimed “Hugo,” which garnered 11 Oscar nominations. This was followed by a leading role in Tim Burton’s “Dark Shadows,” alongside Johnny Depp and Michelle Pfeffier.
Opening across the Philippines in October 01, 2014, “The Equalizer” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.