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Emma receives the 2014 Maui Film Festival Shining Star Award at the Seaside Cinema at the 2014 Maui Film Festival at Wailea on June 5, 2014 in Wailea, Hawaii. Check out MQ and HQs below!
WAILEA – The daughter of actor Eric Roberts and Kelly Cunningham and the niece of Oscar winner Julia Roberts, Emma Roberts did some of her growing up on movie sets.
“It was definitely a different kind of childhood,” said the 23-year-old actress Thursday evening before accepting the 2014 Maui Film Festival’s Shining Star Award at the festival’s new Seaside Cinema Music Cafe and Sunset Lounge at the Grand Wailea.
“It was fun because I got to work with all these amazing people and travel and do all these things I couldn’t have done if I was just in school.
“I was an avid reader, and one of the reasons I wanted to act was that I was captured with stories. I loved books, movies and TV. My mom would put on cartoons and I would say, ‘No, I only want to watch real people.’ ”
Going on sets with her aunt, she recalled, “I would always be in the hair and makeup trailer, trying to learn to do hair and makeup. I would be in the wardrobe trailer, trying on all the clothes. I thought the whole thing was very magical. I still do.”
But now she’s the one making the magic. The Shining Star Award honors “a film artist who dares to dream big dreams and delivers brilliantly charismatic and revelatory performances every time that opportunity knocks,” according to the festival. And considering Roberts’ young age, she has already compiled a long filmography, beginning with “Blow,” starring Johnny Depp, which essentially launched her career in 2001.
The biggest splash may have come as a member of the ensemble with Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis in the surprise comedy hit “We’re the Millers.”
“We loved filming ‘We’re the Millers,”’ she recalled with a smile. “We had a great time doing it but we had no idea it would be received the way it was. I think when things are well received it’s because you’re just having fun and doing what you love. And when there’s no pressure, I think that’s when things become great. Everyone’s reciting lines from that movie. Everyone’s coming up to me, and going like, ‘You know what I’m saying?’ ”
She can currently be seen in Gia Coppola’s directorial debut, “Palo Alto” alongside James Franco. Earlier this year, she starred with John Cusack in “Adult World,” directed by Scott Coffey. She also recently starred in the third installment of Ryan Murphy’s “American Horror Story: Coven” and will appear in “American Horror Story: Freak Show,” scheduled to premiere in the fall.
Her festival appearance was her first visit to Maui.
“Since I was like 8, I would beg my parents to go to Hawaii. It took being 23 to get here. I’ve never been anywhere tropical, really. It’s amazing. The air is different, everything’s different, and the people are so nice.”
Of the festival, she said, “I just like how laid back it is. Everyone seems to know each other, and it feels just so relaxed. A lot of times festivals are so stressful, so I love that this one is so, ‘Hey, how are you?’ ”
The Maui Film Festival continues through Sunday with screenings, star tributes, parties and filmmaker panels at several Wailea venues, as well as screenings in Castle Theater and McCoy Theater at the Maui Arts & Cultural Center in Kahului.
Tonight’s tributes will honor actress Evan Rachel Wood at 7:30 p.m. at the Seaside Cinema, and director Joe Manganiello, whose documentary “Le Bare” about male exotic dancers, will screen following his 10 p.m. award presentation at the festival’s signature outdoor Celestial Cinema.
On Saturday, the festival honors Lupita Nyong’o, this year’s best supporting actress Oscar winner for her performance in “12 Years a Slave.”