TM: So, tell us a little about yourself. What is your favorite movie? book? music group?
Rachelle: I love all music but my boyfriend says I’m “a sucker for a twang” cause I love country music so much. Patty griffin, the Dixie Chicks. But I also love Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, so much different stuff.
Movies are so hard to choose but here’s a few:
Stage Door (the Hepburn/Rogers)
The Shawshank Redemption
10 Things I Hate about you
The Great Escape
Memoirs of a Geisha
She’s Come undone
TM: Victoria is one really bad lady vampire with no redeeming qualities… well, okay she is sexy… Do you find it more challenging to play an evil character than a sweeter one? Or are you having lots of fun with it?
Rachelle: It’s really fun to play both sweet and evil. I don’t think she’s actually evil though – I prefer “unforgiving” or “merciless” because I think she believes she is more powerful than humans and so treating them as disposable isn’t evil, it’s natural. No one is one or the other, we have all in us. You just have to able to admit the worst parts of yourself and then access them.
TM: Are you, Edi, and Cam getting along well? What is this relationship like? Have you made any new friendships on set?
Rachelle: Edi, Cam and I got along great. Edi and I have a really similar sense of humor so the laughing was out of control with us sometimes. Cam is quieter but so genuine and lovely. I was so happy with the cast!
TM: Were into vampires before this opportunity came along?
Rachelle: Yes, I was really into vampires before this came along. It’s so scary but romantic and mysterious. I used to have a recurring dream where Dracula would take me away. I was about 14 or 15 and I used to pray every night that that would be the dream!
TM: Did this Dracula look anything like Edward?
Rachelle: Actually, because of my age and the movies that were out it was more like a cross between “Buffy” (the film) and Dracula was like Gary Oldman!
TM: How are you getting into character? Did you have to much research to understand this role, if so what did you do?
Rachelle: I read the book a couple times and then I made up a very intricate story for myself about why I thought Victoria was the way she was. What must have happened in her life to make her this way. That helps a lot. Sometimes I would just sit and let images run through my mind as if those things happened to me and the way it made me feel gave me a lot of ideas.
TM: Any chance of you sharing what the story for yourself is?
Rachelle: I can’t share the story because once I put it out there I leave it open to scrutiny and I wouldn’t do that with my life so I can’t do it with Victoria’s. Maybe when its over ; )
TM: Is there any other role you would really love to do? Your DREAM role?
Rachelle: As for my dream role: Boudicca. She was a warrior who drove the Romans out of Britain and was named the first queen of Britain after she died. I think I might have a thing with death. a fascination maybe – the fact that we die is what makes life so valuable. That’s why the vampire thing is such an enigma – you get to live forever but it’s a life without value because it can now be taken for granted. You can do everything you ever wanted only to find out it’s now meaningless.
TM: What do you think about all the rabid Twilight fans? Is it surprising there are so many “older” fans too?
Rachelle: I love the fans! For me it shows so much imagination to embrace a world unlike our own. As long as it doesn’t make people disappointed and disenchanted with regular life which is so wonderful all on its own. I’m a rabid Cate Blanchett fan. I don’t think I could speak in her presence and that is very much about the worlds she creates on screen.
TM: Thanks for taking time out of your hectic schedule to chat with us.
What led you into acting? Who are your hero’s? What, if any traits, do you share with Victoria? (Besides the beautiful hair!!!!) How DO you get into character for someone so merciless???
Rachelle: I’m very happy to take time to be here : )
I’ve always wanted to be an actor. I always wanted to be whatever I saw on tv that week or in a movie – lawyer, marine biologist, egyptologist, cop – then I realized I wanted to BE IN the movies, not do the job!
My hero’s change so often. There are so many incredible people but the one constant for me is teachers. It’s what I would do if I couldn’t act and I think it is the most selfless thing you can do. Teachers are tragically underpaid!
As I said before – I think we all share traits with Victoria. Ever kill a bug knowingly? You know murder. Ever lie? Ever deceive anyone for your own good even in the smallest way? You will find it all in everyone, you just need a magnifying glass, sometimes not even a big one.
TM: I wanted to be a music teacher…*sigh* It’s still my dream, right now, I am a Mom.
Rachelle: Being a mom is my other dream. I can’t wait! I don’t think I will fully know what it means to be a woman until I have a child. I have friends who don’t want kids and I understand and respect them but for me I can’t imagine not bringing a life into the world.
TM: If you could act alongside any actor, living or dead who would that be and why?
Rachelle: My two Kates – Katherine Hepburn or Cate Blanchett. Both because they seem so present, so alive and so in the moment, so grounded. Oh, you’ve got me fantasizing now…
TM: Do you ever get nervous in auditions? If so, what do you to do overcome your nerves?
Rachelle: Sure I get nervous! I don’t know what I do to calm down, maybe I don’t. I think what I’ve learned to do is channel the energy (nerves are just excess energy after all) and put it where I need it to be. Sorry, it’s hard to explain!
TM: What kinds of things do you like to do for fun, on and off set?
Rachelle: One of my favorite things is eating in restaurants. I could sit in a cafe for hours… I’m also obsessed with crosswords and sudoku. I admittedly read a lot of fashion magazines and I read a lot of books half-way through- bad habit. I also do this crazy workout called “Barry’s Bootcamp” which is like the craziest hour ever. It helps me use up excess energy.
TM: Since all of us fans are slightly obsessed, we want to know if YOU have ever been obsessed with anything before, have you ever belonged to a fandom?
Rachelle: Okay, it’s really embarrassing but I was OB-SESSED with the New Kids on the Block. I also grew up convinced I was going to marry Johnny Depp and I’m still trying to recover!
Transcriptionist edit here to explain the next post—- I usually edit out any side banter but the banter brought on by the New Kids on the Block comment led to a hysterical comment by Rachelle that I just have to insert here because it shows her personality so well. Somehow the conversation ended up on Snape. I can’t explain how it got there, I’m not quite sure, but A TM posted this picture-
To which Rachelle responded-
Filming: $200 million.
Fan base: 300 million.
Shirtless alan rickman? priceless.
Ok, back to the interview…..
TM: You’ve said that Catherine wanted you to really get a feel for what its like to be a vampire. Can you describe any of the exercises and/or training you did to become Victoria?
Rachelle: The stuff Catherine gave us and what I worked on was movement based. I was actually a cat in my house for about an hour a day at one point just to get it to feel real. Victoria is described as “feline” and I knew that would matter to the fans. I also watched countless YouTube videos of cat attacks.
TM: Thanks again for being with us. I have to go pick up my daughter from play practice. I look forwarding to reading the rest of the interview tonight. Best wishes for you as Victoria! We’re so excited to see you in Twilight!
Rachelle: It’s so flattering that you all took time out of your busy lives to chat with me! Tell your daughter I wish her “break a leg” in her play.
TM: So what is it like to focus all your energy into being a beautiful, powerful strong vampire? What has been your favorite scene to shoot so far?
Rachelle: I loved shooting the baseball scene because Nikki Reed (Rosalie) and I got to face off and we became friends so it was interesting to explore thinking of someone you like as someone you would kill. tricky…
TM: I read that you wrote a really long letter to Catherine Hardwicke about wanting to play this part. Can you share a bit of what was in the letter? I absolutely loved hearing how passionate you were about Victoria.
I also love that they have beefed up her part. Especially considering that she doesn’t even speak in the first book. Can you give us any peeks into some more of what Victoria will be bringing to the movie?
Rachelle: I don’t think I type fast enough to write what was in the letter but basically I expressed 3 things. 1) Why I wanted to work with Catherine so badly. 2) Why I loved vampires and the book and 3) why I wanted to play Victoria.
The most important thing for me was that this world be treated as real. since my character comes back for the whole trilogy if we get there she needed to be more complex than just “a baddie.” You never know what makes it into a film and what gets edited out but I wanted Victoria to represent something about modern women that I love which is the freedom to choose. Want a man? – be with him. Want out ?- well?… Want to say how you feel? Tell the truth. Women have come so far and that freedom is so liberating. It’s an extreme obviously in Vic’s case but that was the jumping off point.
TM: I know that you read Twilight, have you read the other 2 since getting cast as Victoria?
Rachelle: Read the trilogy, yeah.
TM: If someone else had been cast as Victoria what are the things they would not have that you have that make you unique to the part?
Rachelle: I know there are other actors who would have done a great job and I don’t know what they would have done different but I do know that for me she became real and not just a sci-fi fantasy. I’d like to think that I respect the role and the world of the book in a way someone else might not. On a simpler level, I made her playful instead of mean. I think the playfulness adds a toying element that is almost crueler and someone else might not have chosen that approach.
TM: What were you like as a child?
Rachelle: I was always hamming it up. I was an only child so I played all the parts in any game I played. Very over the top sometimes and yet also able to play alone for HOURS.
From grade 4-8 I was a bit of a mess. Big hair with freckles and a head gear. Not so popular…
TM: What kind of chemistry did you have with Cam since he plays your love interest. Will we get to see any of his affections towards you or vice versa?
Rachelle: Cam and I got along great. I believe there is real affection between Victoria and James but in the film (as in the book) there’s not much room to show it. We kept adding little playful tidbits every chance we get. Look for little looks and grabs (wink wink)!
TM: Is your naturally curly?
Rachelle: Yup. Curly, frizzy, big!
TM: I have the same hair!!! Do you just gel/mousse? Give me some Hollywood hair tips!!! PLEASE? I need serious help!
Rachelle: OKAY – THIS CHANGED MY LIFE:
Curly ladies -Brush in the shower or before but once you condition and leave the shower no brushing!!!! Also, towel dry your hair lightly and use a cream leave in and then do NOTHING. You get to see your natural curl without the mousse and stuff. If you need more frizz control add a frizz serum after the leave in while your hair is still wet but less is more! I just air dry and then hit the top pieces that get really frizzy with a curling iron. I don’t use the clamp I just wrap a small section around the barrel, hold, and release. Best trick I ever learned!
TM: Did it surprise you to find that a young adult novel became such a huge success with the 25 and over crowd?
Rachelle: Not at all! It’s soooo romantic and we never get too old for that, it’s what keeps people young I think!
Thank you guys for thinking I’m awesome, I’m so glad if I was able to answer any of your questions satisfactorily!
I cannot thank you enough for your interest, support, and how lovely you were to chat with. I wish you all only happiness and enjoy the fourth book!
Bye from Victoria and me