Directors and producers know that finding the actor to play the hero with a heart of gold is just as important as finding the evil villain to terrify little children and adults alike. For the 1996 film Matilda, directed by actor Danny DeVito, the responsibility of playing the evil principal Miss Trunchbull fell on the shoulders of Pam Ferris.
Pam Ferris was born in Germany, but raised in New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Miss Trunchbull is muscularly built and a former Olympian.
No punishment was too harsh for Miss Trunchbull. Everything from throwing kids across the playground to making one stuff his face with cake.
She is described as “more like an eccentric and rather bloodthirsty follower of the stag-hounds than the headmistress of a nice school for children.”
The actor never had children herself.
“I was obsessed with work in my youth. It’s why I didn’t get married until I was 38 and the reason I didn’t have kids,” she says.
“I know I wouldn’t have been a half-bad mother, but that’s what happened. There’s no regretting it,” Ferris admits.
Ferris began her career as a dancer and choreographer.
People believe Miss Trunchbull is based on Liccy Dahl’s own headmistress as a child.
Liccy admits her headmistress once caught her and a friend sneaking ice cream to their rooms one night.
Liccy Dahl was one of the producers in the film Matilda.
Ferris wanted to ensure the children were genuinely afraid of her.
She revealed to Radio Times that she modeled her character after a local gardener.
“You see, my theory is that she was on steroids – this is not mentioned in the book or the screenplay, but I think if you’re that obsessed about your own physique you probably would get into steroids,” Ferris explains.
Her character may eat raw steak but in real life, Ferris is a vegetarian.
Ferris spent hours in makeup and hair to achieve the grey, crooked teeth, bushy eyebrows, moustache, and sweaty face.
Every detail was thought through to create her sweaty and unfeminine look.
“I did have false eyelashes… and they were on my chin! And a little bit on my top lip,” Ferris admits.
In reality, Ferris is a good looking and elegant woman. She was willing to go through her transformation for her art.
Her portrayal of Miss Trunchbull sent her to the hospital twice for injuring herself on set.
Ferris played another hated character in a famous film. She was Aunt Marge in “Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.”
Images source: lifebuzz.com