Sandra Bullock put in a call to the astronauts on the International Space Station for tips on how to play her latest role in space drama Gravity, but America’s Miss Congeniality says she will never give up playing comic roles. “I will do comedy till the day I die – inappropriate comedy, funny comedy, gender-bending, twisting comedy, whatever comedy is out there,” Bullock said.
“Even a bad TV show – if that’s where I have got to go at the end, I will go there if it’s comedy,” she said the day after Gravity, in which she co-stars with George Clooney, got its world premiere at the Venice film event.
Bullock and Clooney, however, weren’t Mexican director Alfonso Cuaron’s first choices for the roles of space scientist Ryan Stone and her country music-loving mission commander Matt Kowalsky, but Bullock went at the part with a vengeance.
One of the ways she prepared was by putting in a call to the astronauts on the International Space Station. “I was asking silly questions, ‘Where do you go to the bathroom?’ and in the end, I got a viewpoint of these people who we’ve idolised, these astronauts,” Bullock said.
“And the viewpoint is that they care about life, our life and what we’re doing with it so much – that’s why they’re up there. They are normal people who do extraordinary things.”
Bullock said she has suffered setbacks in her career but she sees them as learning experiences. “I’ve handled adversity and I’m sure there’s a lot more to come,” she said. “I haven’t always acted or reacted in a way that made me proud but I didn’t make the same mistake twice and I think that’s what I love about adversity – it always reminds me of what’s really valuable in life.”
She said her performance in Gravity, which required that she spend time in an LED-lighted box to help produce the film’s stunning special effects, had been demanding, physically and mentally.
“It wasn’t a walk in the park for anyone involved, especially Alfonso,” she added. “I mean the immense pressure that he was under, the technicians were under; no one knew if this would work until the day I got into the first contraption.”
“Even then, they didn’t know if it would work technically or if the actor in the contraption could pull it off. It was a great unknown every single day because we were all in the same boat,” she continued. “Everyone was in it together. There was no one-upmanship in this film.”
Published in The Express Tribune, September 1st, 2013.
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