Lynn Collins Interview
Lynn Collins Interview
Lynn Collins is an American actress who has appeared in several television series and feature films since her first acting roles in 2001. With credits including True Blood, Haunted, 50 First Dates, The Merchant of Venice, The Number 23, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, she has now moved onto regular roles alongside world famous actors. Playing alongside Taylor Kitsch and Willem Dafoe in the sci fi adventure epic John Carter, she was recently in London to talk about her time on the set. She spoke to View’s Matthew Turner about getting fit for her fighting scenes, being inspired by director Andrew Stanton’s passion for the film, and just how sexy Taylor Kitsch really is.
What was it like working with Taylor?

Lynn Collins

Well, Taylor and I had known each other for about six years, before we started shooting this project, so working together was really easy, because we have a similar energy and a similar sort of sensibility and we're both athletic and enjoy doing the best that we can do.
You worked together in Wolverine: Origins, I believe?

Lynn Collins

Yeah, but really we hung out all the time, but we worked together only in one scene, where he says, 'Do you know this dead woman?' and Hugh Jackman says, 'No,' and then they walk off and I'm left, like dead.
Did you have any familiarity with the source material before you started?

Lynn Collins

No, I read the script and then read the first book. And the thing that had moved me the most when I got the script – you know, you flip through to just look at your lines, to see how many you have and I was flipping through to see, and I got to this monologue and I was like, 'Well, it's not Dejah Thoris but who is this Matai Shang? Look what he has to say ...' And I read it and I was like chills and crying.

But the source material, after I read the script and then read the book, I was just like, 'This Edgar Rice Burroughs – maybe Andrew Stanton is the reincarnation of Edgar Rice Burroughs.' [Laughs] Because this imagination is just so huge in these books that you have to reach so far in your own mind, that I actually couldn't – the books were too difficult for me and maybe because that's my attention span is very short ... yeah. [Laughs]
I guess many girls would consider you very lucky to be working with Taylor Kitsch again. Is he really that sexy or is it just his appearance?

Lynn Collins

Well, I think sexiness comes from within, it comes from a sense of knowing oneself, knowing oneself to the point of self-confidence and he has that in spades. So of course women are going to find that attractive, because there's also a lot of safety in a person who is that way.
How do you rate him as an actor?

Lynn Collins

What was amazing is his work ethic is incredible and he would insist on everything being as real as possible and that I so admire – that sort of, 'No, it has to be this way' or 'If it's not real, then it's not going to happen.' I find that he has a sensitivity that he shows in this movie that I don't know if he knew about himself. When I saw clips of some of his stuff and it made me weep. And it's not that he's that open throughout this performance, there's just moments of it, so that when it's there it's really effective. But I can't wait to watch him grow and I think this film changed him so much for the better, in his life and in his skill and to do another one would be incredible to see where he would go with it.
What was Andrew like as a director?

Lynn Collins

He was so incredible having a thorough sense of what was happening on set, without using his ego. If the ego's not activated, then the actor isn't on defence, so all of his actors were completely relaxed, open and ready to do the best job that they could do, because of his attitude. And that meant not just what you're doing creatively, how you're collaborating with others, but being kind to people and that being really the key to life and the key to collaborative art, it really is the relationships you have with people, how you connect to your fellow human being. And he's a genius at that.
What was your approach to the part? Did Andrew give you any films or books to inspire you?

Lynn Collins

Um, no. He gave me a drawing and I kept the drawing on my bedside table so I knew what physically he wanted her to look like and then I went to NASA and had a day with three astrophysicists, females, to watch them interact in a world of men, being intelligent and incredibly fierce women. Just awesome, and beautiful women as well. And that informed me a lot and then I just did the physical work, which was a lot of boxing and a lot of weight-lifting and a lot of exercise and eating the right foods to get strong so that I could do the stunts, so that I could do the fighting.

And then that informed the mental process, because you can't play strong, you have to be strong – you can't play brave, you have to be brave, you have to embody it. And then once you embody stuff like that – this is the rewarding part of acting, is that then it stays with you, so all of that strength and everything stayed with me in my own life. So she's been a blessing and I can't thank Andrew enough.

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Content updated: 12/12/2017 08:09

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