Hollywood producer learns to fight her inner demons in Justine Bateman’s ‘Violet’

Justine Bateman grew up as a child star in Hollywood, and now she’s directed her first feature film, “Violet,” about a woman in Hollywood who is ruled by negative thoughts. Photo courtesy of Justine Bateman.

Justine Bateman quickly became a star when the sitcom “Family Ties” debuted in 1982. She played the sweet but vain teenage daughter, Mallory. At age 16, Bateman was beamed into homes nationwide when there was no Netflix, Disney Channel, or YouTube. 

In her 2018 memoir, “Fame: The Hijacking of Reality,” she writes about how scared she was to speak up for herself, the regular insults and criticisms she endured, and the feeling of always being watched.

So it’s fitting that her directorial debut, “Violet,” is about a Hollywood producer (played by Olivia Munn) who’s constantly battling the negative voices in her head.

“‘Violet’ is really about the human experience, the negative thoughts we have — in the film, we call it the voice — that cause you to make fear-based decisions. ‘Don’t do that or X will happen.’ Some kind of worst-case scenario. So this is about a woman who realizes that voice is lying to her. … She then starts going against it so she can feel herself,” says Bateman. 

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