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In "Ice Princess," Michelle Trachtenberg plays brainy high school student Casey Carlyle, who dreams of being a professional ice skater but whose mom (Joan Cusack) is steering her toward an Ivy League education instead. When Casey gets a chance to train with a disgraced former skating champ (Kim Cattrall), she goes against her mother's wishes and uses her math skills to plot out a perfect performance. MTV News' Kelly Marino recently sat down with Trachtenberg to find out what she thought about working with one of her "Sex and the City" idols and whether she'd ever faced the sort of dilemma that had Casey so torn.

 Photos: "Ice Princess"

 Photos: Red Carpet Arrivals At "Ice Princess" Premiere

MTV: What kind of training did you do for this movie?

Michelle Trachtenberg: It was constant. I trained for eight months, including the time we were shooting. When we weren't filming, it was like five days a week, five hours a day. I had ballet every other day, mixed into that. And then when we were filming it was seven days a week of work. On the weekends I was doing choreography. And then during the week it was 20-hour days, just constantly on the ice from morning to night. I worked really, really hard. I bumped and jumped and fell along the way and did all that, but I guess it's all part of being an athlete.

MTV: Is this something you might continue to do on the side since you trained so much and got so familiar with the sport?

Trachtenberg: Well, for me this was a character, you know, that I specifically trained and wanted to have in that respect. But acting is my love, it's my joy, and what I really just have fun doing. So that's what I'm sticking to.

MTV: In the movie, your character is torn between what she wants to do and what her mother wants her to do. Growing up and wanting to be in this business, were you ever torn? Or was it something your parents supported you on?

Trachtenberg: I started acting when I was 3 years old, and I was never pushed into it. In fact, my mom has been just amazingly supportive and has always said, "The second you stop having fun, the second you stop enjoying it, just get out. It's not worth it." So I've always had a really great support from her, which was interesting, because in "Ice Princess," my character, Casey, and her mom, Joan [Cusack's character], they don't have the same opinion on what Casey should be doing. Joan wants her to go to Harvard, and Casey wants to be an ice skater. So that was an interesting struggle for me to kind of think, "What would that be like — not having the full support of my mom?" And I'm glad that Casey went after her dream.

MTV: What advice do you have for kids who are stuck in your character's position, where they are torn between their dream and what their parents want them to do?

Trachtenberg: Well, there's a particular scene in the movie where I tell my mom, "This is what I love, and this is how I feel best." And I don't think if you have an open communication with your parents, I don't think they can deny you your dream. I mean, there's a compromise at hand. I won't tell you the end of the movie, but there's always a compromise. You mix a little bit of both worlds. Like I said, I wanted to be an actress and my mom said, "You have to always go to school. You have to have your education." So I had to mix in both worlds, and it was hard but I did it.

MTV: What was it like working with Joan Cusack and Kim Cattrall?

 "Ice Princess" clip: "The computer doesn't make the jumps, that was all you"

 "Ice Princess" clip: Trachtenberg is going to have to prove herself to Coach Cattrall

 See all our clips here

Trachtenberg: They were great. Joan is a wonderful woman. She's a great actress. It was a really great match for us to play mother and daughter, I think. We really loved each other off-set, and I hope that it comes across on camera because she's just a pleasure to act against. And Kim's great. Kim's just a fun, awesome woman. I was a huge "Sex and the City" fan. She's a cool lady. I think people will be really surprised at her role in this movie, and I'm happy for her.

MTV: What kind of projects do you have coming up?

Trachtenberg: I can't really say the names yet, 'cause I'm in a bunch of final negotiations now, but I never really stop working. I have a movie that's actually awesome, and I think MTV will really respond to it. It's called "Mysterious Skin." And that's a much darker, independent film, completely different from "Ice Princess," and it's directed by Gregg Araki [and it co-stars] Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Elisabeth Shue.




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