The lovely Teresa Palmer sat down for a couple of minutes to discuss her role as Julie, in the rom com “Warm Bodies.”
Is this a role you really fought for?
Teresa: Yes, I had to fight really hard for it. I read the script and I connected with it instantly. I thought it was amazing, it was unique and different and something that I had never read before. Then, I knew who was directing it, Jonathan Levine and I was a huge fan of his from “The Wackness,” I thought it was a brilliant movie and that just really made me even more interested in being a part of the film . I met with Jonathan Levine first, had a meeting with him, then did a chemistry read with Nick, then did another audition with the producer and the director. Then, ended up putting myself down on tape. Then, I wrote an email about why I wanted to do the movie so bad. Then I finally found out that I got the movie. So, I was very, very happy.
So, you clicked right away with Nick? You guys have a good chemistry.
Teresa: Thank you, yeah. It’s interesting because he doesn’t really get to express himself verbally, so I thought it might be difficult for us to have chemistry but it was very easy with Nick. He’s such an amazing actor and he’s a beautiful person and he’s got a warm spirit and I really felt so connected to him instantly. Even from the audition I knew that I wanted to be a part of this movie, even more because of his way, his beautiful way. And he was able to express enough to me through his eyes and his body language and his facial expressions that it wasn’t challenging to have chemistry with him at all. Even though my characters talking the whole time, I really felt like I was getting so much back from him.
This is sort of a zombie fairytale, was that an approach that all of you took with it?
Teresa: Yeah, there is a little magic in this movie. And for me, I believe in magic. I definitely think this is fairytale like in a way. I mean it’s a beautiful message behind all of this and it is that love heals, love prevails, love breathes life back into people and I absolutely believe that. I’m very connected to that and when I read the script it was so obvious that was the message. There are lot of broken spirits in society these days and lots of depressed people and human connection and love really can brighten people, can those whose lives who have been dimmed can be reignited again by love.
How much fruit cocktail did you have to eat?
Teresa: There was a lot of that. It was so funny because I was eating super healthy on that movie too and I had I was going through some health things so I had a strict health regiment. So all the things I had to eat I had to ask the props guys if they could try and get me the healthier version of that. And they ended up being really sweet and chopping up all the little pieces of the fruit cocktail and not giving me all the sugary, syrupy stuff and they made it fresh every day. It was really nice. It was better than eating brains. Nick had to eat that all the time.
I thought you did a really great job of expressing fear without emoting and playing off an opposite lead that has such little verbal communication, was it difficult to play off of him at any time because there’s not a lot of language there?
Teresa: He really did give me so much. In terms of those things, I really just had to think, how would I feel if a zombie had captured me and taken me to his lair. I think you lose the power in emotional scenes when you’re balling and letting it all out. I think if I was a captured being, I wouldn’t want my capturer to see how upset I was. I was trying to hold it together but you’re absolutely petrified so, your bodies shaking and I just had to thrust myself into what that would feel like. A lot of actors draw upon their past experiences but I had never really experienced that enough before, so I had to just follow my instinct and do what I thought was the appropriate level of being scared.
Can we talk about the action aspect, I know you did “I Am Number Four,” so you can shoot-
Teresa: Yeah, I can shoot.
But this was a lot of running, action and stunts-
Teresa: Yeah, we did some stunts-
Did you do those yourself?
Teresa: Yeah, it was great. I felt like I had really experienced as much as you can possibly experience in terms of action in a film with “I Am Number Four.” I really trained for that movie, I would train for five hours a day with a stunt team and really became a warrior. That was only a couple of years prior, so when I got to “Warm Bodies,” I had muscle memory, so I just remembered what I was doing and the stunts were relatively easy. But I love doing action; I realized that on “Number Four,” I just enjoy that aspect of filmmaking. I hope I get to do more action films in the future and this was great because I got to do a little bit of everything. I got to be the lead in a romantic movie and then I also got to do some running and stunts and then it’s parts comedy too. It was really nice, it’s a wonderful mixed bag this movie.
Did you have a favorite scene in the final product of the movie?
Teresa: My favorite scene is probably between Julie and R when I’m telling him about Perry and how one day he just changed and he touches his heart and then he touches my heart. I just think that’s such a pivotal moment in the movie and she says ‘what are you?’ she starts to realize that she’s falling for this person and I love it so much. I feel like that’s the trigger point for the love to really open up and start blossoming.
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