Kristen Stewart (the Twilight saga), Naomi Scott (Aladdin), and Ella Balinska (The Athena) star in the titular roles of Charlie’s Angels in the new action adventure film from director Elizabeth Banks.
In the film, the security and investigative agency of the mysterious Charles Townsend has expanded internationally. With the world’s smartest, bravest, and most highly trained women all over the globe, there are now teams of Angels guided by multiple Bosleys taking on the toughest jobs everywhere.
As the Angels have evolved, so too have their missions. In this movie, we meet Elena Houghlin (Naomi Scott), a brilliant scientist and engineer who has created Calisto, a sustainable energy source designed to revolutionize the way we power things. When her bosses rush her invention to market, she warns them there is a flaw in the system: in the wrong hands, it can be used as a deadly weapon. Unfortunately, her bosses turn out to be The Wrong Hands, so Elena turns to The Townsend Agency for help. A contemporary whistleblower story worthy of the 21st Century Angels, Elena’s fight for justice ignites a globe-trotting adventure to get the device back before something terrible happens.
But espionage is espionage, so when we first meet our Angels, they’re naturally in the midst of a mission on a glamorous roof-top terrace in Rio de Janeiro. Sabina (Kristen Stewart), going Full Angel in a sultry disguise, is making sure that her mark is wrapped up in her ruse—and ultimately in the curtains in a very Cirque du Soleil moment.
As the free-wheeling, free-spirited hot shot of the team, Sabina is a total wild card. “I feel like if Sabina was a dog, she would be the mutt at the shelter that was definitely going to take a bullet for you, and I wanted to bring this levity to the character. In the beginning of the movie, Sabina seems the most social, outgoing… like she has all the friends in the world,” says Stewart. “But really, she’s just trying to find her team. She would do anything to have friends, and she just wants her family.”
As Sabina continues enjoying her life by keeping her villainous dining companion tied up, the doors open to reveal Jane Kano (Ella Balinska), an Angel with the heart of a soldier. And we watch as the two of them destroy a room full of criminals.
A former MI-6 Agent, Jane is everything Sabina is not: “Straight-laced, determined, focused,” says Balinska of her breakout role. “She finds her strength in physical activity, she’s very disciplined, and never fails to get the job done.”
While Sabina is a lone wolf looking for a family, Jane is determined to prove her independence. She doesn’t need anyone and she certainly doesn’t want anyone to need her.
“None of the elements of our group work well together in the beginning, because we’re so individual and we’ve just developed independence in the way that women have to, but almost to a fault,” says Stewart. “You think, I can do it myself. I’m fine on my own. As the movie goes on, my energy is like, I think we could do so many crazy things if we just never separate and become a very solid unit.”
Enter Elena, the brilliant scientist the women are charged with protecting. While audiences have come to know Naomi Scott as Jasmine in the live-action Aladdin, this role is a whole new world.
Elena is an expression of the potential that every woman carries inside of her, a key theme in the film. “Elena represents the type of girl that may not be someone that you would think would necessarily be an angel—the idea being that anyone can be an angel,” says Scott. “It’s about honing your own skills and being the best you can to actually do good.”
In Philippine cinemas on November 13, Charlie’s Angels is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International. Use the hashtag #CharliesAngels