The film, which will be released on June 24 in the U.S., is directed by Nicolas Winding Refn, and it follows Fanning’s character, Jesse, who moves to Los Angeles to make it as a model.
Although the role is fictional, Fanning said that she found some themes in the movie relatable.
“I was born in Georgia. My sister [Dakota Fanning] started first, so she went out with my mom to test it out,” the actress said. “Me and my dad stayed behind. Then my sister got all this stuﬀ and was doing movies, and we were like, ‘I guess we have to move to L.A.’ We just stayed. That’s my home. I mean, I was so young. I’m a California girl.”
Fanning expounded on her character, offering: “We realized, as we were filming, who the Neon Demon was. I thought it was L.A., or the models, but actually it’s kind of…me. But it’s also beauty. Beauty can be your demise. And this is so prevalent now because of social media and apps that make you look a certain way. People really care about the way they look — all the time.”
V editor Stephen Gan is no stranger to the world of models and fashion. He noted that the subject matter of the film also struck a chord with him.
“As the young ingenue arriving on the fashion scene in The Neon Demon, Elle Fanning is totally convincing…playing exactly the type of model we see in the fashion business every day,” Gan said. “Exactly the type to drive the experienced supermodels, played by Abby Lee and Bella Heathcote, crazy with jealousy. Elle is kind and sweet in real life, extremely fashion savvy, but the furthest thing from a diva, but then again, she is only 18.”
The issue, dubbed V102, hits newsstands on July 14.