The New Mutants: Alice Braga on Dr. Reyes Powers and Group Dynamic

The New Mutants is poised to bring together a group of X-Men universe characters who are discovering themselves and their power set. Responsible for offering some care and direction to the titular group of young mutants is Alice Braga's Dr. Cecilia Reyes. While Dr. Reyes herself has mutant abilities, inheriting the responsibility of helping the youngsters realize how to use their own will prompt an evolution in how she uses hers. In comics, the first time Dr. Reyes uses powers offensively rather than defensively is a big moment, and it sounds like this group dynamic might call for something similar.

"I think this group of actors that [director Josh Boone] was able to get at, they're so talented," Braga tells "I mean, you have Maisie Williams and Anya Taylor-Joy. They're like one of the best of the generation that is out there. They're really, really, really good actresses. It was beautiful to see all of their work because this is a character driven film. It's not only... They're not already a superhero, but they are struggling with their questions in life and they're kids... like teenagers. When you're a teen, you're figuring out about your body, about who you are in the world and how you accept and deal with the world and deal with others. And I think the movie does that in a brilliant way because you see these kids with superpowers, but they don't know how to deal with it and they don't want to accept it and they're figuring out, so they're kind of dark, but then they overcome that to become a superhero and to be the new mutants. I think it's exciting to see their journey into that. I think it's going to be really amazing for the fans."

Braga's Dr. Reyes, as comic fans know, has abilities which include instinctively creating an energy barrier around her to defend herself from threats. This power set was an interesting experience for the actress on set!

New Mutants Cecilia Reyes
(Photo: 20th Century Studios)

"It was a lot of fun, actually," Braga says. "I did a lot of action films and apocalyptic films, but I never had superpowers. It's really interesting for you to add that because she can put like force field around herself and around people. Actually, it's a power that I would love to have today with COVID. It would be really nice. I would walk with a bubble. My own force field. We experienced a few things. I don't want to give it away too much, but it was exciting to explore that. Josh and I just feel the power...I'm like, 'Yeah, I like this! Feel the power.'"

While the psionic barriers are typically a defense mechanism, Dr. Reyes will have to lay down the law in The New Mutants and that might call for using the psionic powers offensively. "I think in this case in the movie specifically, I think it's to organize the kids," Braga says of Dr. Reyes using here powers. "She's the one in charge. She's the adult. They are rentals, so she needs to... She's the caretaker, so I think she's the one that needs you to manage them."


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