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Sci-Fi Movie Titles: [ S -- Z ]

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Old Jul 8, 2006, 05:45 PM   #1
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1,988 flights since Dec 2002
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Underworld: Interviews

Underworld has several threads in its name, scattered everwhere. Here it the search box: http://forums.sciflicks.com/search.php?searchid=216

Kate Beckinsdale

By Thomas Chau of New York City

Despite having talked about “Underworld” for hours already, Kate Beckinsale can prove she still has her upbeat sense of humor.

“You’re slightly freaking me out right now cause you have a ‘Pearl Harbor’ t-shirt on,” she says to me after she sees my shirt from the movie “Pearl Harbor.” If I may quickly explain myself, I always get free swag from studios but if you look at what I wear on a daily basis, I only wear about 4 or 5 t-shirts from movies. I wear the “Pearl Harbor” shirt simply because it’s a cool, olive-green color and I don’t own any shirts in olive-green. So as I dressed myself for the interview, I went through my dresser and thought, “Ah, what the hell?”

The “Pearl Harbor” beauty stars in a new twist to the age-old “Romeo and Juliet” story. In “Underworld,” we are introduced to the shadows of the night as for centuries, a war between vampires and werewolves has been looming. Seline (Beckinsale), once human but now a warrior for the vampire race, is determined to avenge her family’s death as she believes the werewolves were guilty of killing her family. But in the midst of the war, the werewolves begin to express a mysterious curiosity for a human named Michael Corvin (Scott Speedman). She begins to fall in love with Michael but when she finds out that Michael has been bitten by the wolves and will convert at the next full moon, where will her loyalty lie? To her race and her cause for fight, or love?

Beckinsale came to New York to talk about “Underworld” and was also cheerful to discuss her own personal life, as well as her next film, “Van Helsing,” which will star Hugh Jackman and will be released by Universal Pictures next summer. I had a chance to speak with Kate and, if I might say, was perhaps one of the most beautiful women I have ever met in my life. No joke…

Was your costume leather?

It was latex.

How do you move in that?

It was like a condom with sleeves. (Laughs) It was actually quite bendy. The only restrictive thing was the corset but I’m no stranger to the corset with my English movies.

[Director, and fiancee] Len [Wiseman] mentioned that you initially didn’t want to do the movie?

I didn’t want to read it. As soon as I read it, I wanted to do it. I was a little bit prejudice about vampire movies I didn't fancy running around in a nightgown and waving garlic and getting my neck bit. But it was like a B-movie, gothic, screaming girl king of thing. It was a cool comic-book action movie, with a girl who looked like she was a proper action hero. I found that totally appealing.

Did you read into the vampire mythology and folklore?

Yes and then I was told to completely forget it since we’re working with berettas and ultraviolet bullets. I think they stuck to the very barebones of it in terms of the moon, and not being out at night. I think they definitely wanted to tweak it for the 20th century.

Were you looking to do an action film before this?

It was something that I always wanted but the thing is that you get this great action movie but you think, “Ah yes, I’d like to play the boys’ part really.” But I really am one of those rare chicks who really loves an action movie and I take them quite seriously. I didn’t want to do a winking-at-the-audience, and now-I’m-going-to-shower-but-I’ll-put-my-gun-down-first action movie. That’s kind of what has been [in Hollywood.] I feel like it has been a long time since Sarah Connor, “Alien,” and “La Femme Nikita.” Beyond that, I find that there has been an element of “camp” if a woman is the lead, which can be a very fun movie, but it’s not the kind of action movie that I necessarily wanted to be in, so it was pretty exciting to be in this one.

Are there going to be toys for “Underworld”?

Mmm-hmmm. And I get one for “Van Helsing” as well. I’m scared I’m going to come home and see my child going, “Die Mommy die!” (Laughs) It’s weird because her dad is in “Underworld” as well so she gets a doll of me, and a doll of her dad. I met David Duchovny once and our kids had a play date. His daughter had an “X-Files” doll and a “Jurassic Park” doll and I thought, “That’s the coolest thing! I want Lily to have that!”

I could see “Underworld” developing a sort of cult following. Are you prepared for that kind of response?

You guys are freaking me out because people keep asking me that. What does that mean? (Laughs) But it’s funny because I was at Comic Con for “Van Helsing.” I went with Hugh Jackman and that’s like going with Elvis. I had this incredible experience where you see the full obsession of people dressed up like Wolverine. If he walked passed them, they’d go “Arrrr!” “Grrr!” You’re with Elvis! I could’ve been naked, covered in butter, and nobody would’ve looked at me.

You have a couple of fighting sequences in this movie. What was the physical training like that you did for this film?

I had two or three months of wire training, guns, boxing, yoga, and all the good things that English people don’t like. It was good because I had never really done anything like that before and it really was a kind of life changing experience. Just as a woman, I think you realize as you’re walking down the street, trying not to attract too much attention, you’re occupying a really small space without really consciously trying to aim to do that. Suddenly, you need to be realistically beating up three men, so it’s a very different place for your body to be. I find that quite difficult. It was the boxing that I found the hardest. That’s how they structure the training. They’re like, “Here’s the gun. Actually, you’re quite good at that so we’re not going to spend very much time on that. Now throw a few punches.” (Pauses) “Wow, you suck.” (Laughs) As a woman, [I found out], without realizing it, that I was quite inhibited physically. Having to break through that, I found liberating in so many different ways. Even now, my favorite [moment] is when I see myself beat up three guys because I know what it took me to get to that point.

Have you carried any of that into your real life?

You get, for a couple of months afterwards, a completely false sense of yourself as a total bad-ass which is dangerous. Luckily, I have four brothers and a lot of male friends. 'Cause you go home and you're like, “Come on, come on, wrestle me!” And they always still win.

I think it was Ben Affleck who was saying that after all the terrorist attacks, people have been real jumpy on planes. It’s awful flying commercially [after] being in an action movie, because everybody’s going to look to you like you’re suddenly about to spring into action and deal with it.

For me, after this movie, I felt more comfortable feeling feminine. It was a weird one. I thought I’d come out feeling tough and guy-ish but it broke through a barrier where I felt comfortable going, “You know what? You can carry my bags. Thank you for opening the door.”

Are you on the bad-ass or feminine side in “Val Helsing”?

Bad-ass with boobs. (Laughs) Once [Director] Stephen Sommers saw the trailer of “Underworld,” he said, “O.K., so that movie is about your ass. This is all about your boobs.” (Laughs)

Len mentioned that there are prequel/sequel possibilities. Is that something you’re definitely interested in or is it a wait-and-see approach?

I had a fantastic experience making this movie and I really liked the character. And you know, the director’s all right. (Laughs) There’s definitely muttering about it right now although it hasn’t reached me other than, “Babe, would you do a sequel”? (In a weak voice) “Yeah.”

With three films back-to-back this year, “Underworld,” “Van Helsing,” and now, “The Aviator,” how do you relax from working?

I have never gone non-stop for a year. But I’m aware that my child will be in kindergarten next year so I feel like I’m very much restricted. I don’t want her being one of those kids who are home schooled.

How hard is it being a working actress and a mother?

I am lucky because I do get to bring my kid to work with me. She comes into work with me every single day. I get to spend my whole lunch time with her, I get to put her to bed, I get to put her in the bath. I’m a lot luckier than most working mothers are. And then, I get to have a couple of months off when I’m home. So I am very lucky.

So if you could have one supernatural power, what would you choose and why?

Flying, I think. It would be so convenient. I hate traffic. I think that’s way better than being invisible.
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