I had the opportunity to speak with fellow Valley GirlTM Alana Haim last week about her breakthrough part in Licorice Pizza and her new music and upcoming tour with her sisters.
Alana talked about fangirling over Bradley Cooper, her connection with Stevie Nicks of Fleetwood Mac, and her unwavering love for the San Fernando Valley. Here is all we discovered:
What do you do first thing in the morning?
I wash my teeth as soon as I awaken. I snore and am a mouth breather – which is horrible to admit. When we’re on tour, my siblings HATE ME [laughs]… I believe I am the sole snorer in my family.
What was your most recent binge-watched show?
Yellowjackets. I watched it for over two days.
Summarize your style in three terms.
Danielle’s closet will remain eternally.
Identify a musician — alive or deceased — with whom you’d want to work.
Prince. Our family desired to perform music with Prince — which we accomplished by sneaking onstage at SNL’s 40th Anniversary party when he was performing.
We were standing onstage at random when he came on. We were supposed to perform a song with Maya Rudolph, and then Jimmy Fallon revealed that Prince was in the building, and we all looked at one other and thought, “If we just remain, maybe they won’t throw us off stage.”
Furthermore, they did not! Thus, although we technically performed with Prince, we would have enjoyed the opportunity to collaborate.
Who would you choose if you could cast anybody in a biopic about you and your sisters?
Jonathan Jonas and his brothers. Alternatively, Hanson.
Who was your celebrity crush as a child?
Rider Strong is a character from Boy Meets World. I wished I could be with him and wear his flannels.
How was it working on a film set with Paul Thomas Anderson?
To refresh your memory, the Haims has been lifelong family friends of Paul Thomas Anderson, and he directed multiple Haim music videos.] It was a whole other experience!
Typically, we only have approximately 24 hours to shoot a complete music video. It’s rather amusing because whenever my brothers and I need to shoot a music video, we’re constantly wondering, “Do we bother Paul?”
As a result, we naturally slide into Jewish guilt, and we’re like, “Do we address him? Should we contact him?” Thus, THAT takes two weeks, and we wind up with just 24 hours, and he’s always asking, “Why didn’t you bring this to me weeks ago?”
However, he is always open to collaboration and creating beautiful art, and working on the film with him was a blast. We filmed for 65 consecutive days, and each day was an experience full of laughter and love.
Naturally, there were some difficult days, and since I’d never acted before, there were certain things I had to learn on the job, but he was patient with me.
We have a relationship and a friendship, and I had complete faith in him throughout the procedure. It was a blast, and you can see from the film that we were having a good time.
In several interviews, Paul Thomas Anderson had said that he developed the picture just for you to play Alana Kane — but what was your immediate response when you learned you had been cast as Alana Kane in Licorice Pizza?
When I’m high on adrenaline, I’ll almost always answer yes. For instance, you might invite me to skydive, and I would answer, “Yes!” However, as I approach the point of jumping from the real aircraft, I begin to second guess every choice and wonder whether this is something I should be doing [laughs].
As a result, when he asked, I said, “Of course!” However, as I lay in bed that night, I began to doubt if this was something I could truly do. However, Paul was my staunchest supporter throughout the whole ordeal. He never questioned me or made me feel incapable.
Could you describe a typical day on the set of Licorice Pizza?
I’d get up at 5 a.m. and put on my ’70s music playlist while doing my hair and makeup. I did my hair and makeup daily for the film, blowing it out and doing little makeup.
I’d be lying if I claimed there were never days when I wished I’d spent an extra ten minutes on my makeup. However, we were shooting in the Valley during the summer, and the temperature hovered around 100 degrees every day. We filmed on the year’s hottest day – the hottest ever recorded.
However, I’d drive to set and then walk to my trailer. Cooper [Hoffman’s] trailer was next to mine, and we exchanged music.
After we were clothed, we would go through our day’s sequences and begin filming. We were in the ’70s the moment we opened the door to our trailers, and Cooper and I would say, “All right, let’s go!”
How did you first see Bradley Cooper?
As a result, we were not permitted to meet him until he arrived on site. It worked out because Cooper and I were both anxious about meeting him (Bradley Cooper) in the role of Jon Peters, but that is how it turned out.
We heard, “Action!” and then Bradley Cooper appeared, leaving us speechless. “OMG, that’s Bradley Cooper!” both Coop and I exclaimed.
He stayed in character during his five days on set, but after he was through, he approached us and said, “Oh, my gosh, I’m so sorry I was that way!” However, it aided us since we needed to be frightened of him!
Which celebrity did you last DM on Instagram?
Oh, I’m not sure. Nobody ever DMs me. Is it a negative trait? [laughing] Perhaps I should begin slipping into people’s direct messages… I’m going to say — oh, god, this is so humiliating, and my sisters are going to hate me for saying it because he could unfollow us — Drake followed Haim a long time ago, and we all freaked out collectively.
I believe we follow each other, but now that he is aware, he is likely to wonder, “Wait, why am I following this band?” [laughs]
Did you develop any new interests during your quarantine?
I discovered needlepoint! I became absorbed in it — but I am also a Sagittarius, which means I get completely fascinated with anything for about five minutes and then move on.
Oh, you mean I became interested in these diamond artworks as well? It’s similar to paint by numbers, but with crystals. It’s lengthy but well worth it.
Which emoji is the most often used on your phone?
What is the current background on your iPhone?
Oh, I have something to demonstrate. It’s my parents on the day of their wedding! They’re adorable.
Which behind-the-scenes memory did you share with Cooper Hoffman?
There were parts when I had to drive him about in this ancient Pontiac, and in between shots, we would sit in this incredibly sick vehicle and geek out over it.
I would also drive Coop about Los Angeles since he lacked a driver’s license, so I was essentially his chaperone in real life as well. He is one of the most amusing guys I have ever encountered, and we are unquestionably two peas in a pod.
Which memory from your sisters’ trip was your favorite?
We’ve performed at Glastonbury three times, but the first time was on the Pyramid Stage, and it was one of those moments when we all looked at one another and wondered how we got here. It was most clearly a pinch-me moment.
If you could only possess ONE T-shirt from a band, which one would you choose?
I’m looking for an authentic Beastie Boys tour shirt. From any period.
When were you the most amazed by a celebrity?
Without a doubt, I am meeting Stevie Nicks. That meant a great lot to me since I am a major Fleetwood Mac fan, and she adored our first album. It was just surreal. She gave me this necklace, which I wear daily – I never take it off. I am fortunate to be able to call her a friend.
What is the most memorable present you’ve ever received?
Stevie Nicks’ gold moon necklace.
What is your preferred alcoholic beverage?
A Traditional. Additionally, a martini. Actually! I drank my first martini on the Licorice Pizza set, so when my character says, “I’ve never had a martini before,” it was true!
What is one item that you absolutely cannot leave your home without?
My automobile keys, to be precise.
Do you have a go-to comfort food?
Pasta. Pasta of any sort.
What was your most recent read?
When I’m feeling down and need a chuckle, I always reread David Sedaris’s Me Talk Pretty One Day.
What is the finest advice you have ever received?
“Never leave home if your head is damp.”
When can fans look forward to new music?
To be sure, we’re going on tour. I can’t say much, but I would anticipate a surprise pretty soon.
Finally, if you had the option of swapping closets with Danielle or Este, who would you choose? Of course, Danielle. Este has incredible style, but Danielle’s is the *chef’s kiss.