Bailee Madison Gives RAW Interview
RAW: Where's your favorite place to be in the world?
BAILEE: I’m going to do the cheesy answer, which is the truth - my family. I spend most of my time on location, so when I’m with them, I don’t care where we are. One of my favorite places that I’ve been able to film has been New Zealand. It’s a tie!
RAW: How old were you when you started working in this industry?
BAILEE: I did my first movie called Lonely Hearts when I was four. I wasn’t actually supposed to be in it! My sister was auditioning for a different role and [the casting director] saw me in the waiting room and said, “Can she come in?” so I did. They wanted me to cry more for a scene which was the weirdest thing!
RAW: Was there someone you really looked up to in the industry as a kid?
BAILEE: Dakota Fanning was my current age when I was younger. I remember loving her! I Am Sam was a film that touched me so much when I was younger and I watched it the other day on a plane. It’s like what storytelling and filmmaking is to me. I worked with her sister when I was eight, so it’s kind of full circle. And as I’ve grown older, you start admiring Sandra Bullock and Jodie Foster and the rest because then you start to be aware of adulthood.
RAW: Aside from acting, what are some of your other interests?
BAILEE: I’m obsessed with cooking. Put me in the kitchen with some Betty Crocker and Martha Stewart! And then as weird as it sounds, organizing. It’s amazing to get to unpack because I’m always living in my suitcase. And I just love spending time with my little nieces and painting with them. Writing has also been really therapeutic and great for me.
RAW: Tell us about your young adult novel, which is out now!
BAILEE: It’s fiction and called Losing Brave. It’s about a girl who just lost her sister, it picks up a year after, it shows how she and everyone else in the town is dealing with it. Then, two other girls show up missing and she takes it upon herself to try and find them. I co-wrote it with my friend, Stephanie Miller, with the idea of adapting it into a screenplay. She was producing my first movie, Annabelle Hooper, and I brought along to rework the script with us. She came to me and had this idea and we just started writing together. It’s crazy!
RAW: Where do you see yourself in ten years?
BAILEE: I love the behind-the-scenes world, so hopefully stepping behind the lens a lot more. Directing is my biggest dream and passion . And then philanthropy, traveling, and being able to see different cultures.
RAW: If there was one thing you wanted to be remembered for in your life, what would it be and why?
BAILEE: Just being compassionate and kind. I don’t think there’s anything more important. I don’t think at the end of life you’re like, “Oh my God you’re the girl who had so and so followers or you did this.” It’s how you treat people. Who were you on the inside? I think being remembered as being kind would be the best.
RAW: What’s one thing you’ve yet to accomplish?
BAILEE: I should learn how to play a sport ’ve tried to play tennis and I broke both my wrists, so I don’t really know how that works. I tried to be a normal kid and my mom made me go to tennis camp for the summer. She was like, “You’re going to take three weeks off, Bailee. You’re gonna be a kid. It’s gonna be great.” I was like, “Okay!” First day, killed it, and I looked great in that tennis outfit, not gonna lie. Then, second day I fell backwards-- I wasn’t even playing tennis. I was racing a four-year-old on the other side of the net and I landed hands first and broke both my wrists. Both of them! Not just one!
(RAW got the opportunity to ask both Bailee and her boyfriend, Alex Lange, a few of the same questions. Here’s what they had to share.)
RAW: Who was your first celebrity crush?
BAILEE: (laughs) Josh Hutcherson. On the set of Bridge to Terabithia, AnnaSophia (Robb) and his teacher helped me write a love letter to him. She wasn’t supposed to show him, but he saw it. He’s like, “I-I read your letter.” And honestly I was like, (whispers) “I’m sorry!” I was mortified, but he was so cute! I was six years old. But now he’s like my big brother.
ALEX: Selena Gomez to be fully honest with you. She’s up there. And Bailee was on Wizards of Waverly place with Selena, so please don’t kill me! (laughs) Cut that out! But no, she’s beautiful.
RAW: So you first saw Bailee on Wizards of Waverly Place?
ALEX: Yeah, but I didn’t even recognize Bailee was doing any of this for a long time. The puffy cheeks are still the same but she’s grown up a little!
RAW: How’d you meet Alex? Did he slide into your DM’s?
BAILEE: Ha! No.I designed a t-shirt with two of my pals and I flew out for a store launch opening. He was friends with a couple of my mutual friends, he walked in and I turned to a couple of my friends and asked who that was. Then my mother walked up to me and goes, “There’s this guy walking around...” and she started point at him and I was like, “That’s who I was talking about!” Then he positioned himself next to me and we just talked all night. I wanted to get his number but I didn’t have the guts to ask, so I made my friends put me in a group chat with him. He was flying to London to go back home in time and he was asking us what movies he should watch and I wrote him, “You should watch The Proposal.” I mean, how subtle is that? (laughs)
RAW: Let’s get raw for a second. There’s obviously been times in your life when you haven’t been your happiest. What would you tell someone who’s stuck in a rut?
BAILEE: The first thing to say is that you’re not alone at all. That’s when you feel the most alone and isolated, and the truth is that we all feel those emotions. That just comes with growing up. My advice would be just to know that with time everything heals. In five years from now, probably this thing that is driving you crazy isn’t going to matter, but it’s going to be something that made you who you are. My mom always says that the decisions you make in the instant are the ones that define your true character. My thing right now-- I always tell myself that there’s somebody else having a much harder moment. Then I normally choose to pray for them instead of me and it kind of changes my vibe for things.
ALEX: I got in a dark place when social media came up. Being in high school and putting yourself out there on the internet came with a lot of bullying and criticism. There’s all these guys in my class that were saying, “Why are you doing this? He’s so stupid. He only cares about Instagram. Blah blah,” It was something that was so new that when people didn’t understand it, they criticized it. I didn’t really have have any friends at school. Everyone was criticizing what I was doing, and it was my passion so I wasn’t going to give it up, but it was a struggle.
That applies to other people not in the same exact way. Some people are going to get criticisms for the things they love. My best advice for that is, surround yourself with one or two good friends and keep ‘em by your side because you don’t need fifty friends that are going to be pushing you and pressuring you or talk behind your back. You want to keep good friends around you who are there to support you and want you to succeed. ᴿᴬᵂ