Julianne Moore taken aback by deaf culture's beauty while filming Wonderstruck

The actress was also blown away by her co-star Millicent Simmonds' talent.

Julianne Moore left the set of Wonderstruck with a profound sense of appreciation for the beauty of deaf culture.

The actress portrays two characters in the new children's drama opposite her young deaf co-star Millicent Simmonds and she felt privileged to get a glimpse into the hearing impaired community while shooting the movie.

"That's hard to resist, getting to play two parts, (plus) the book (by author Brian Selznick that the movie is based on) is pretty extraordinary," Julianne tells USA Today. "It's about these kids who are trying to find their parents, but what they end up finding is their culture and community. There's something beautiful and very meaningful (about that)."

The 56-year-old learned sign language for her role and relied on Millicent for encouragement as she attempted to master her signing technique.

"She was so nice about my signing, which is bad. It's like talking to a baby, I'm not kidding," Julianne noted. "(Millicent) was very encouraging. She'd always go, 'You got it — keep going, keep practicing.' "

Wonderstruck Director Todd Haynes, who has worked with Julianne in three other pictures including I'm Not There., Far From Heaven and Safe, recalls how impressive Millicent's performance was during her audition for the lead role, which has earned the young actress critical acclaim.

"With Milly, there was such a sense of her whole being being communicated to me when I saw her sign (at the audition)," the filmmaker recalled to Vulture. "She described how much she loved the language, ASL (American Sign Language), and how much it meant to her. And one sensed that her experience and her consciousness of being a deaf kid provided her with tremendous strength and an outlook on the world that was something she derived great joy in and specificity in, that she felt like … she had a self-possession that came through. I just kind of fell in love with her when I saw it and my casting director, Laura Rosenthal, who I’ve worked with for years, I know she felt the same way."

Wonderstruck is released to U.S. theatres this weekend (20Oct17).

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