Exclusive Interview: Teresa Palmer

Mimi ON Feb 25, 2011 AT 2:58 pm

Teresa Palmer

Teresa Palmer

Teresa Palmer , named in 2005 as one of Australia’s Stars of Tomorrow by Screen International, first caught the attention of audiences worldwide with her leading role in “2:37,” an Australian independent film that screened to acclaim at both the Cannes Film Festival in Un Certain Regard and the Toronto Film Festival. The Australian Film Institute nominated Palmer as Best Actress for her complex portrayal of a high school student with a dark secret.

Palmer starred in the comedy “Bedtime Stories” with Adam Sandler for director Adam Shankman and Walt Disney Pictures in December 2008. Palmer was most recently seen starring opposite Nicolas Cage and Jay Baruchel in director Jon Turteltaub’s “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice” for Jerry Bruckheimer Films and Walt Disney Pictures and in Imagine Entertainment/Rogue Pictures film, “Kids in America,” in which she stars opposite Topher Grace.

She’s now in the new film starring Dianne Agron and Alex Pettyfer, I Am Number Four, and stars as Number Six. We’ve managed to pin her down to find out a little more about her:

Mimi: Could you tell us about your role as Number Six?
Teresa: Number Six is very intimidating, but she’s equally as enchanting as she is scary and fierce. She’s tough; she knows how to fight; she’s a force to be reckoned with. That meant that I had to endure a lot of intense physical training for the character, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

Teresa Palmer in I Am Number Four

Teresa Palmer in I Am Number Four

M: What was your favorite action moment?
T: My very favorite action moment was this one stunt that I did it at three a.m. in the morning. And I didn’t know I was going to do it. I arrived on the set and it was “all right, girl, you’ve got to get in a harness.” They brought me onto set and I saw my stunt double being hoisted upside down, sixty feet high in the air… he’s a guy, wearing a wig. He’s flailing around, screaming, and then D. J. Caruso walks up to me and was like, “Are you ready to do that?” I just had to do it. It was so exciting; it felt invigorating. I was basically picked up by my right leg very fast, upside down, sixty feet high in the air, attached to a crane.

M: Are you naturally athletic?
T: I was always very much into sports growing up. I did softball, net ball, horse riding and volleyball. And then after school I stopped being physical because I didn’t have to be.

M: Do you like being an action hero?
T: I love it. I definitely I feel like it’s gotten in my blood now, so I would love to pursue it in the future, in terms of more action-packed roles. And I was very surprised at how challenging it was. I thought I would come in there and just fake stabbing people and fake shooting and do a couple of rolls and that would be the extent of the work I would do.

Teresa Palmer at the I Am Number Four Premiere

Teresa Palmer at the I Am Number Four Premiere

M: Do you think women are making it as action heroes in Hollywood, not just men?
T: Yes and it’s very exciting. I think there are a lot of strong female characters coming up in these films. And it’s nice; it’s definitely a shift from what we’ve seen in the past, with it typically being a male star who is the action star or the hero of the movie.

M: How did you like working with Callan McAuliffe?
T: Callan McAuliffe is so bright and so lovable and endearing and funny that I just think with that sort of personality in this industry he can go as far as he wants to. And he’s also talented to back that up. So it’s a total whole package right there. He doesn’t have a big head and he’s just very down to earth. And very Australian, which I love! It’s so refreshing working with someone like him. I wish him all the best in the future and I can’t wait to see where his career goes. I’m sure he’ll go very far.

M: How much have you needed to adapt? Do you still live in Australia?
T: Predominantly I’m based here, but I go back and forth to Australia as much as I can. At times Los Angeles can be very lonely. Especially the first year I was here; it was initially a very difficult transition for me, especially coming from little old Adelaide, South Australia, coming out to the bright lights of Hollywood. It was very isolating. But it meant that I just had to grow up quickly.

You don’t have a crutch there; you don’t have your family with you to lean on all the time. I went through a lot of changes the first year, and I felt like that was the year I became a woman. I love it now though; I feel settled here and I have a great group of friends. I have a good perspective. And it’s a nice balance coming back and forth from Australia to Los Angeles.

M: What is your next project?
T: Well, I’m really excited because I’m going to be shooting a film in Australia. It’s called “Say Nothing” and it stars Joel Edgerton. It’s one of the Blue-Tongue Films group of directors; Kieran Darcy-Smith is directing it.

M: Is there a particular filmmaker you’d really like to work with?
T: There are a ton. I love Paul Thomas Anderson; I think he’s got these quirky characters. And I love Alfonso Cuarón. One of my favorite movies of his was the film that made me want to be an actress, called “A Little Princess.” This little girl was in it, Liesel Matthews, and I was her age when the film came out and I just wanted to be her; I wanted to be an actress. Alfonso’s very talented. I would love to work with him.

I Am Number Four is out in cinemas now.

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