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ShockTillYouDrop.com: Was it director Tommy Wirkola’s energy that drew you to this project?

Famke Janssen: There are a lot of factors that go into a decision about what to do. But, the main factor [laughs] at the time was money because I took three years off from acting. In the end, it wasn’t meant to be three years, but I needed that time to write and direct my own movie and it ended up having so many false starts. It wound up being a five year window, but three of those years I couldn’t go back to acting. That time was up and I was like, ‘What do I do?’ This came along and I thought it was pretty cool. It was a young European filmmaker with his own take on a fairy tale that people are familiar with and has a specific meaning to children and adults. And he gave it a different spin and the cast was another big factor. Jeremy couldn’t have been more hot coming straight off of Kathryn Bigelow’s movie. It was a interesting scenario. But what I thought was ironic was going back, after being in charge as a writer-director and calling the shots, to being on a set and in a make-up trailer for three hours every morning and going through this transformation. I thought, ‘Right, that’s what it’s like being an actor!’ [laughs]

Shock: With that writer-director mindset, did that stick with you during the shooting process, too? Did you ever offer advice?

Janssen: I would never do that. But I was so overwhelmed by what this prosthetic business was all about. I’ve been part of movies where other people have been in that and have rightfully complained, but I’ve never actually been under prosthetics before. And it’s difficult to describe unless you’ve been in that process…

Shock: I have, actually.

Janssen: What did you think?

Shock: I got a tad impatient by the end, but the reward of seeing the final make-up is cool. Also, I tend to fall asleep in the chair, but that doesn’t help the make-up artist.

Janssen: You’re lucky. I tried everything because my hands were being done at the same time as my face and I just had to give up and breathe my way through it. It was challenging. Acting has been so specific for me and what I’ve learned – eyes, facial expressions, all of that stuff – and with something like this, you’re robbed of all of this. Or I could no rely on things I’ve done in the past. It was different and frustrating at times because I had this circus of people around me in case something became unglued. The other aspect is the make-up and the contacts were so strong, looking in the mirror I thought just that alone looked scary, so if I over did it, it would be too much. It becomes laughable.

Shock: Tommy told me earlier that each which had an animalistic quality and that you’re represented the wolf. Did that help inform you at all?

Janssen: I can’t remember if he did. [laughs] Maybe he forgot to relay that one little part, I would have played it completely differently! [laughs]



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