Harley Quinn Smith On Her Actor Idol

Harley Quinn Smith, daughter of director Kevin Smith, tells me she finds it “a little embarrassing” that at 17, she’s never had a mundane, part-time job — like a host at a chain restaurant, or better yet, a cashier at Eh-2-ZED like in Yoga Hosers . As someone who worked at least six boring jobs in high school, I wonder if Smith feels like she’s missing out. “There was definitely a time when I was trying to work at frozen yogurt shops and stuff,” she says. “A lot of other aspects of my life are normal.” The actress says she’s finishing high school, “like everyone has to,” pays for everything with her own money, and cleans her bunny’s cage. According to Smith, she’s like any other teen. But unlike other teens struggling to figure out what the heck they want to do with their lives, she knows that acting is her calling.

“There’s nothing more in the world that I’d love to do than work,” she says. Smith also tells me about the A-list actress who changed her life, someone she aspires to be one day. And while at the brink of starting her career, excited about what the future holds, she is worried about one thing: being viewed as a product of her famous dad.

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Smith explains the one thing making her anxious, although she “appreciate[s] and value[s]” her education, is spending time in school when she could be working on set. She’s ready, and if anything, has an A+ role model to look up to. “Margot Robbie has my dream career,” says Smith. She even says the actress’s performance in The Wolf of Wall Street changed her “entire life.” Smith explains that when the film came out, her parents didn’t want her to see it because it didn’t “depict women in a positive way.” She saw it against their wishes, and although she agreed the depiction of women wasn't awesome, she was completely taken by Robbie’s performance.

“[It] was just so breathtakingly amazing,” she says. “She was so committed to that role, it was such a fun role to watch. I love seeing actors put themselves in an entirely different body than themselves, [otherwise] that completely defeats the purpose of acting.” Watching Robbie as quit-witted Naomi Lapaglia caused an awakening. “To see her transform into someone so different, with those accents and everything, it was a true wake-up call to me that transformation acting is out there for me,” Smith explains.

And of course, she praises Robbie’s performance as her namesake Harley Quinn Smith in Suicide Squad . “She was so fantastic as [Harley Quinn], I love her so much. She crushed it,” says Smith. “She’s really, really killing the game right now. If I can have something slightly similar to her career, I would be the happiest girl in the entire world."

It isn’t so far-fetched for Smith, who has a knack for being in front of the camera. Now, she’s just concerned others will realize that, too. “It definitely worries me that people will not take my career seriously because they’ll just look at me as a product of nepotism, which is a little true,” she says, “But I’m really not here because of my dad, I definitely want to prove to the world that I deserve to be here and that I can work just as hard as anyone else and I’m good at what I do.”

If anything, because Smith was blessed with her transition into acting (Johnny Depp is in Yoga Hosers, guys), she feels it gives her even more determination to show people what she can do. “I have drive to work twice as hard as any other actor because my introduction into this world was so seamless and easy. I just worry people won’t see me as a serious actor when truly that’s all I want to do,” she says.

I understand Smith’s worry, but after hearing her genuine nature and watching her perform, I don't think she has anything to be concerned about, especially with a little Robbie magic to look up to.

Yoga Hosers is in theaters now.

Images: Invincible Pictures (2); Paramount Pictures