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Here's why Brie Larson directed a film about unicorns

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 8/11/2017 Andrea Mandell
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Brie Larson has been making unicorns her priority.

The actress, whose new movie,The Glass Castle, hits theaters this weekend, spent her summer on a personal project: Her directorial debut, Unicorn Store.

"I’m pretty deep in post(-production), so it's almost final touches,” Larson told USA TODAY. After a long line of super-serious projects, Unicorn Store is more of "a discourse on silliness," she says, following an art student (played by Larson) who finds her messy, childlike creations get her kicked out of art school. (Samuel L. Jackson and Joan Cusack co-star.)

But for the future Captain Marvel, getting behind the camera was also symbolic.

Brie Larson's passion project, 'Unicorn Store,' is currently in post-production. © Roy Rochlin, FilmMagic Brie Larson's passion project, 'Unicorn Store,' is currently in post-production.

"The idea of directing is not about success for me personally, it’s about putting more pieces on the board," says Larson. "My hope is that people watch the movie, and women can watch it and they can either go, 'Wow, I can’t believe she did that, I want to do that.' Or you can look at it and go, like, 'She did that?! I can do better than that! I’m up for the challenge.'

With statistics of women behind the camera depressingly low, "I just want women to feel like they can take the risk," she added, before pausing. "Actually, it’s not just women. It’s everybody who wants to do something and feels like they’re not allowed to do it.

"Because even though I’m someone who is constantly challenging themselves, there’s still these parts of me that are like, am I allowed to do this? Am I allowed to be a free creative person and just try? I’m realizing as time goes on that I am, and so I’m hoping other people get that outlet." 

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