Alice has had enough. She’s finally decided that she’s not going to put up with her abusive boyfriend Jack any longer, especially when her lover Dylan is just waiting, ever so patently, to whisk her away to a better life. She puts her foot down and hits the road, but first, she makes a pit stop to see her friends, Nathan and Lucy Webb. Just when she thinks that she’s finally on the path to freedom, she’s yanked back into her nightmare by the people she thought she could trust the most. Kill Me Three Times shows just how far people can go when they need the money badly enough.
Full of life and clearly in love with her craft, Alice Braga is a very mesmerizing and intelligent woman. When we chatted a few days ago about her upcoming film Kill Me Three Times, it felt more like two girls getting coffee than a formal interview. While we sat and giggled our way through the conversation, Alice talked about her instant chemistry with Luke Hemsworth, her love of stunt work, and the importance of taking on fast-paced action roles as a woman in Hollywood.
Kalyn Corrigan: How did you go about signing onto this film? What was the process like? Did your agent ask you to audition, did the director come and speak with you and say he’s seen your previous work and he loves you? What was that whole process like?
Alice Braga: Laurence Malkin, he was one of the producers, one of the American producers, he’s my agent’s brother, and actually I got attached to the project, it came to me like years ago. I can’t even remember how many, but I think like four years ago maybe? It was a long, long, time ago, and they actually had another director attached to it, and we spoke. I was curious about it, it wasn’t certain, but time went by and when they attached Kriv to direct, they called me and said “Look, we have this director, it’s going to happen”, and they started pulling together a bunch of different actors which was super interesting, and I was already ready, in a way, for the project. So it came through the producer, and then it came together with my desire to work with Kriv, I’ve seen Boxing Day and I loved it, and Red Dog so it was interesting how it came about. I think it was meant to be, in a way, because I was the first one to be attached. Before everyone else.
KC: Before anyone? So what was it that drew you to the script? Was it the director mainly that made you want to do this film?
AB: I mean I was curious about the story when they told me a long, long time ago. The script was super different. Well, not super different, but it had changes, and got better and better and better, but when Kriv got attached, and Simon and everybody pulling together, it just became interesting in the sense of not knowing whether it was going to be a drama or a comedy but a halfway through and Simon’s such a phenomenal actor that it was just interesting to see what he was going to bring, and I think he brings it.
KC: Yeah, definitely. So, since you were the first to be attached, what was it like when Luke Hemsworth came along? Was there instant chemistry? Was it something that grew over the course of filming?
AB: I did a chemistry reading with different actors and Luke was one of them, and actually, funny enough I have the same manager that Luke has. I knew Chris [Hemsworth] before because he was around L.A., and I met him a couple of years before meeting Luke, so I knew of him and all that, but it was great, he’s such a wonderful guy. I remember when reading, he was very honest and truthful in the scene that we were doing and I really liked his work, and right away, there was a connection. On set, we became good friends because he was far away from his family, I was far away from my family, even though his family is in Australia, so it just came up like very natural and I think through mutual respect toward how we were facing the characters, I think Luke was very honest with his feelings in the character and in the moment, very truthful. So it was great, it was wonderful to work with him.
KC: Do you think that had a positive effect on the film?
AB: I think so, definitely, I mean I hope so (laughs). People are starting to see it now, because I’ve only spoken to managers and actors and agents and producers so you never know. It’s nice to have other people’s point of view, but I think so, definitely, yeah.
KC: What was it like filming the action scenes? There’s a lot of crazy stunts. Did you do any of those yourself?
AB: I did almost everything. There’s a stunt girl that did some, like she did the rolling down the hill one and all that because I couldn’t do it, she did a lot actually, but some of them I wanted to do myself, especially because of camera-wise and all that. It’s fun to make, especially. Apart from that, you bring more reality to it. I love those things, like for me, it’s like Disneyland. I’m like, “Let’s do it!” It’s like a kid playing in the playground. So yeah, it was a challenge, physically you need to be ready for it and not hurt yourself, but of course, I know my boundaries. But it was a lot of fun. I hope people can notice it’s me, then it’s worth it to go through it.
KC: Were there any stunts that you wanted to do that the crew was like “no, it’s too dangerous, you can’t!”
AB: Rolling down the hill. (Laughs)
KC: Yeah, you wanted to do that? (Laughs)
AB: I mean, it looked fun. I was like, “Let’s roll!” But they wouldn’t let me do it. I mean, there was a lot of rocks, they would never let me do it, and I would never do it. I’m just saying that to be cool. I’m kidding. (Laughs)
KC: So did you go through a lot of training for your action scenes, or was it just something that you did on your own time?
AB: I always train myself and I’ve done a lot of action films, so it was something that was natural for me. I work out normally and all that, even though in Australia I was a bit lazy, because it was just so beautiful I would go to the beach with wine in my bag and that’s it. But normally, I’m kind of ready for it. I did a couple of action films that kind of like made me be ready for these type of things, but for this one, no, I think it was just something that I threw myself into it.
KC: Yeah I’ve noticed, looking at your film resume, that there’s a lot of action films and a lot of fast-paced thrillers, so was is it that brings you back, that draws you to this genre?
AB: I love making films no matter what, I come from independent films in Brazil, very indie, small drama films and since I came to the U.S., that door opened, like I did I Am Legend, then I did Predators, then I did Repo Men. There were some type of films that came in my direction and the doors opened for me to work on these types of projects, and I think, especially being a foreigner, those were the types of films that were open for a foreigner, and that was very interesting. I kind of like doing the auditions and getting the parts so I think it was a happy coincidence. I have so much fun and I love them so much, and it’s great, because I got the chance to work with great directors and actors that helped me to learn a lot about acting, but also about these types of projects, so it’s fun.
KC: It’s really cool that you’re willing to take on those roles.
AB: I love it. And it’s so funny because sometimes I get like very strong and powerful women, and I look at myself, and I’m like, I am like 5’2 or 5’3 (laughs), and I’m like really? Me with a gun? Like in Predators I’m a sniper and I remember when we were filming, I was like “Who is gonna believe this? Guys, come on. Look at this rifle. This is not believable.” And everyone, after the film was released, all the fans and everyone were like “Oh my god!” They believed it! I was like “Oh thank god they believed it.” Because I’m just like 5’3, very short, very tiny girl. It was fun, it was great. I love these types of films. I think physically and emotionally it’s always good when you have to change yourself and mutate yourself through a character.
KC: And that’s so great that you’re willing to do that, and the definition of roles for women in Hollywood is growing and expanding in definition. So, how important is it for you to take on these roles that would normally be reserved for a man in the past?
AB: I think it’s great! I think we’re in a moment that there are so many good female characters, and so many chances, especially like for Latins, to do so many different types of roles. I mean of course there’s Latins in films, but now, it’s not necessarily critical for the character to be Latin, it doesn’t need to be said that this person has to be Latin, a Latin person might just take the role. And I think for women, it’s a wonderful moment. I just did a pilot for a series called Queen of the South that is for USA Network, which we’re gonna figured out if it’s going to get picked up, but it’s a female character and she’s Latin and it’s a very strong character that survives through escaping from the drug dealers that try to kill her and all that, and her own journey starts. You can see nowadays how many strong female characters are coming up as heroes through T.V. and through movies, and I think it’s wonderful. There’s so many ways that you can tell a story with a female lead and it’s wonderful. I think we’re in a nice moment. I hope it keeps going.
KC: Definitely, keep it rolling. What more can you tell me about the show, Queen of the South?
AB: Not much, actually. (Laughs) I told you basically all that I could. No, but, it’s based on a book by this Spanish writer Arturo Pérez-Reverte. He’s a really good writer, and it’s a very famous book, it’s been out for a long time. They tried to make a film I think five or six years ago, and it just approved for the series, and that’s it. It’s about this Mexican girl that lives in Mexico and suddenly her life just spins around she goes through a journey of going through the drug dealing, cocaine world.
KC: When can we expect to see this?
AB: I don’t know, I mean, if it gets picked up, I think October, but we’re still not sure. They haven’t started the tests, you know, with pilots it’s like let it float through the universe and pray.
KC: So, I’m very curious, since you worked with Neill Blomkamp before on Elysium, and he attached to direct the new Alien movie, is there any chance that you might make an appearance in this film?
AB: I haven’t talked to him in a long time, so I have no idea. I would love it if I could be attached to it, I would love to work with him again but I don’t know. I don’t know anything, actually. I was filming when I heard that he was attached to it and I was super happy because I think that Neill is such a young, bright talent. I think he’s so unique, and what he brought with District 9, he was so amazing, and having a chance to work with him on Elysium was such an honor because you see a guy that was like, I think 32 on set? But he was so secure and so passionate and so sure of what he wanted that it was inspiring. When I heard that he was doing Alien, I was so happy. One, for him, because I know how much he loves it, and two, for the project because I think he’s gonna bring a lot to it.
KC: Yeah, I think his style is gonna be great for that.
AB: Yes, I hope he hires me. Put it out there. (Laughs) I’m kidding.
KC: Are there any other upcoming projects that you’d like to discuss? I know you have By Way of Helena coming up.
AB: Yes, I did that last year with Liam Hemsworth, funny enough. I am all about the Hemsworth brothers. I love it. Liam is a sweetheart, we did that with Woody [Harrelson] as well. It’s a beautiful story, it’s a period piece so it was wonderful to get the chance to work with both of them, but especially, to do this project. But really, to see Liam in such a different role, I think people are going to be blown away by his performance. He’s a very beautiful, strong ranger and it’s a nice story. Very crazy. And Woody’s amazing.