Interview: Bond Girl Olga Kurylenko
Olga Kurylenko, the latest and perhaps most bad-ass Bond girl, walks into the room wearing a stunning, skin-tight dress that you, as a mere mortal, know you can never own. She insists later that you'll never see her dressed like this on her own-- just jeans and T-shirts for her, thanks-- but it seems almost unfair that she wouldn't. Like a Bond girl should be, Kurylenko is ridiculously, unfairly gorgeous.
Read below for our roundtable interview with Kurylenko, in which she talks about her plans that go beyond action movies, getting through some difficult stunts with Daniel Craig by her side, and doing stunts in her sleep.
Did you do all of your own stunts?
Most of them.
Were there any stunts you didn't want to do?
Yeah, the boat scene. It was very difficult not to fall out of the boat. The boat was going very fast-- it was like a roller coaster. Usually when you're on such a speedboat, you're holding on. We were not holding on, we weren't sitting down-- we had to fight. We had the whole choreography going on. Then we had to crash into other boats.
What do you think of the character? She's got a lot going on.
I think she's great to be this kind of Bond girl. She's very different from others;. She's so strong and feisty, and she's independent. She doesn't need Bond to help her. She doesn't need anybody to help her. She can do everything by herself. She has her mission in the movie, she has her own story. She's not an accessory to Bond.
You've made a long series of action movies, with Max Payne, Hitman and this. Are you getting used to this style?
No, it just happened that all three were action films. I enjoyed this one very much. This one was really the one where I was involved in action. It was a lot of fun doing your own stunts. That was something new that I discovered. But I don't want to do just that. I'd like to do as many versatile parts as possible. That's the goal.
Can you talk about working with Mathieu Amalric?
It was great. Mathieu-- we invented a whole story about [our characters], because they kind of have that special relationship. It's very interesting. His way of working is very different from others, for example. He has his own style. He is very spontaneous. He's different in every take. I never knew what he was going to do; he was surprising me.
It's scary too, though, isn't it?
It's exciting. It's not scary in a negative way. I'm his partner, and he's going to do something to me, and I have to react.
How familiar were you with Marc Forster when you were offered the part?
When I saw his name, it didn't ring a bell. And when I looked, it was like, oh, all these movies I've seen. When I started working with him, I realized we are so lucky that he directed this movie. This movie has so much action, and it's very easy to just forget about all the rest. In this movie, because it's so intense, we needed to keep the depth present. He kept very concentrated on that. During that scene on the boat, which is all action, he said, 'When I'm looking at the screen, I'm looking at your eyes. What are you expressing?'
Is it hard to focus on the character in those action scenes?
You have to do the choreography, but that's why you go for months with the stunt team and train. They make it automatic. They make it so you don't have to think, 'Oh, what's next?' They trained me so hard I could fight in my sleep. I think the stunt coordinator did say this-- 'It should be so in your blood that if I wake you up in the middle of the night, and i said go to do that scene, you should get up and know exactly what you're doing.'
How did you and Daniel Craig help each other through some of the tougher days or tougher stunts?
He was very encouraging. He told me you're going to be so happy when you see this. He's so invested, and he's so focused. When you see an actor like that, and he keeps his cool-- he's a brave man. For everything he did, he must be one. It gives you courage. It inspires you.
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