January Jones told the LA Times she is “intimated” by Emma Frost’s barely-dressed body. Although “Mad Men” and “X-Men: First Class” are set in the 60s, Jones realizes that Betty Draper is a radically different character compared to Emma Frost – especially when comparing their wardrobes. She also added she wanted to know as much about the character in order to please the hardcore fans.
Written by Rebecca Keegan
When January Jones was initially cast as mutant telepath Emma Frost in “X-Men: First Class,” she was eager to for the chance to break out of the retro 1960s world of Betty Draper, her character on “Mad Men.” Imagine the actress’ surprise when she learned that prim Betty and the vixen Emma could be partners in time.
“When I heard that this installment of ‘X-Men’ was gonna take place in the ’60s I was like, ‘Oh my God, you must be kidding me!’” Jones said. “But I read the script and familiarized myself with the character of Emma Frost. She’s so, so far from Betty and from ‘Mad Men,’ and it takes place in that time but it doesn’t feel like a period movie.”
“It’s a lot of very body-conscious stuff. If you look at the comic book, she’s barely dressed. She’s got quite the bod, which is very intimidating.”
One of the first things Jones wanted to understand about her character was the source of Emma’s anger, an answer she found by steeping herself in “X-Men” lore.
“Emma was a bespectacled, mousy child who had this power when she was young that she couldn’t quite harness, the telepathy, the mind-twisting stuff,” Jones said. “She had a falling out with her father and went her own direction.”
It wasn’t just learning Emma’s back-story that was important to Jones, but being able to reach hard-core fans. “Fans of the X-Men comics have a very set idea of these characters in their heads,” Jones said. “I wanted to know as much as I could about her so I wasn’t disappointing anyone. I’m sure I will still disappoint someone.”
The film, which opens in June, has about a month of shooting left. For Jones, it’s a welcome chance to branch out from 1960s housewife to 1960s bad girl. “I’m riding around in helicopters, I’m in a boat one day, I’m in all these fight sequences, we’re all over the English countryside,” she said. “I feel like I’m a kid playing mutant.”