Celebrity: This month, Together met up with Chloe Bennet – a young woman who is going places, fast.
More famous for her role as Daisy ‘Skye’ Johnson/Quake in the Marvel television series Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., Chloe Bennet’s recent work has seen her involved in an animation project that sees her as the voice of a teenage Asian girl helping a Yeti find his parents.
In Abominable, 27-year-old Bennet notes a welcome change in that, in purely a voiceover role, she is not on-screen and, by that logic, “not being judged solely for looks, as a lot of women are”. More than that, she is enjoying a new challenge of taking on a project that doesn’t rely on make-up, hair, wardrobe or anything else beyond her voice.
Bennet – born Chloe Wang, to a Chinese father and a Jewish American mother – moved to China to follow her dream of becoming a singer, living in the Chinese capital of Beijing with her grandmother on the paternal side of the family. She then moved back to the USA – Los Angeles, to be precise – and changed her stage-name to Chloe Bennet. In 2012, Bennet secured a role as ‘Hailey’ in the ABC drama Nashville and later that year was cast as ‘Daisy’ in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., a character she has played ever since.
In Abominable, Bennet plays the voice of teenager Yi, who after discovering a Yeti on the roof of her apartment building, embarks on an epic quest – along with her two friends – to reunite the magical creature with his family. But to do so, they must stay one step ahead of a wealthy financier and a determined zoologist who want to capture the beast for their own gain.
Together: So, what can you tell us about this new film and how different is it after six years in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.? Chloe Daisy and Yi are very similar in the fact that they are kind of stubborn, curious, confident and longing for something more. They are also both searching for home. Yi reminds me a lot of Skye in season one and season two when she was looking for her family and also looking for where she belongs.
How similar to you is the character? Yeah, we are quite similar, and I think that the only thing that Yi and I don’t have in common is that she is really amazing at playing the violin, whereas I don’t know how to play it at all. Yi is just everything that I wanted to see in a girl, because I don’t really relate to princess characters and to be honest, I didn’t even get to watch films or TV programmes starring princesses when I was growing up – mainly because I have six brothers and I was constantly in the minority when it came to voting for what we were choosing to watch! [Laughs].
I was a stubborn, creative and independent kid who was someone who wanted so much more out of everything I did or was involved in and Yi is very much that type of character, as well. She gets in trouble a little bit, but, ultimately, they are the traits that become very rewarding, and being part of this film is something which I feel is somehow part of Yi’s journey, if that does make sense.