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December 2004
Blade: Trinity: An Interview with Jessica Biel

Blade: Trinity: An Interview with Jessica Biel

By Wilson Morales

While in New York to promote her latest film, Blade:Trinity, Jessica Biel spoke to blackfilm.com about her character, working with Wesley Snipes, and the possibility of a spin-off film for her.

How much fun was it to do karate? Did you know karate beforehand?

JESSICA: No, I didn't. I knew nothing. It was great, it was so much fun. I had such a great time learning and training and working with our coaches. It's a dream come true to be paid to work out and to learn martial arts. I just loved it and had such a great time.

What drew you to this character?

JESSICA: The fact that she's equal in intelligence and physical ability to her male counterparts and that she's a strong, smart woman. I recognized in her a female heroine void of the stereotypical female traits. She just wants to kill these vampires and that's what she does and there's no relationships and no romance. That's her prerogative and that's what she does. That's why I liked that character.

So if we were to look into Jessica Biel's iPod, what would we find?

JESSICA: You would find a bit of everything. You'd find Bob Marley, Christina Aguilera, Damian Rice, Joss Stone, Alicia Keys, 50 Cent, Led Zeppelin, really all over the place.

What about Abigail's iPod?

JESSICA: You'd find deep trance, house music. Some hip-hop but she likes more of a house style music that's really kind of intense and trance-like.

So how could she fight and be aware of what's around her while she's listening to music?

JESSICA: I never asked that question but I think it's Blade world. It's comic book world. We can get away with these type of things. She just senses something's behind her and just turns around and kick their butts!

Are you squeamish around blood?

JESSICA: I'm not squeamish at all about blood. Actually, as a child, I dragged a dead squirrel on a skateboard home from the grocery store and cut it open and tried looking at it's brain. I'm not kidding. I asked my mother and she gave me some kind of tool and for a long time, I was sawing through the body. I was very intrigued with surgery, I wanted to be a surgeon for a long time. I loved the doctor shows and surgery shows. Blood is not an issue for me. I took pictures once of getting my blood taken. I have no problem with blood. In "Texas," I was covered in so much fake blood that I could never have a problem with it.

Could you drink human blood like a vampire?

JESSICA: Is it my blood? I think I can drink my own blood. Is that weird?

What was it like working with Wesley Snipes?

JESSICA: That was a really interesting experience because he's Blade all the time and Blade isn't really someone you get to know. I don't know Wesley. I didn't really get a chance to know him. He really didn't give us a chance to get to know him. He's really focused in his own process and you know, I've never worked that way before but I respect it and give him his space. You let him do his thing because he's obviously done it in the past and knows how to do it right. So if that's what he needs to go through, then by all means, go for it.

Do you find it unnerving working under those conditions?

JESSICA: It's weird to see him in the morning and not quite know what to say. I get a little response. Does he hate me? Is he pissed at me? There's a bunch of questions that go through your head at first. So I think it was a little unnerving for me. I think for everybody who hadn't worked with him before it took a little while to get used to that type of process for somebody. You get used to it. You go about your day and you go about your work and your habits your own way. He didn't impose on me and I didn't impose on him either so he didn't necessarily make my experience negative to any extent. I respected him for what he had to go through.

What was your workout and training regimen like?

JESSICA: It was brutal and intense as well as fun. I enjoyed it actually. I know that might sound sick but I guess that's nothing considering we were talking about sucking blood! We trained throughout the whole film and a month before filming started in a gym, two hours a day, on a very strict diet. An hour of fighting, an hour of archery and then working all day.

So did you and Orlando trade archery stories on the set of "Elizabethtown"?

JESSICA: You know, we didn't! It's so funny, it didn't occur to me to ask him about that. I heard though a lot of his arrows was CG because he had to shoot so quickly and our bows were totally different.

So what was "Elizabethtown" like? What was it like working with Cameron Crowe?

JESSICA: Working with Cameron was so great. He's a creative genius. It's such a beautiful set to be on. He takes every character whether it's one line or five hundred lines. He gives you so much of his attention and works you through it in every different emotion or feeling. Everything you can think of to do. Compassionate, angry, turned onŠyou just try it so many different ways. He's open to opinions and he wants to know what you want to do and what your ideas are. He's so passionate about his ideas and what he works on. It was just so amazing. I've never worked that way before in my life.

So with "Blade" and "Texas," do you want to do more physical, action type roles now?

JESSICA: I just want to have a balanced career. I want to be able to do everything and do "Elizabethtown" and do "Blade" and do something funny. "Stealth" is an action film but it's very different from the action in "Blade." We shot almost completely on a green screen for all of our actual flying scenes so there's explosions, dog fighting in the air.

Growing up, was there ever any kind of superhero or fantasy role you wanted to play?

JESSICA: I've always wanted to play a female Indiana Jones.

Are you looking forward to doing a potential "Nightstalkers" spin-off?

JESSICA: Yeah. We had such a good time that we just said, "Let's do it." That's just another party, just getting in great shape and hanging out together and making a fun movie. So I would love to be Abigail again and do my movie.

What would you like to explore in Abigail that didn't get touched upon in this movie?

JESSICA: Her own sense of humor really didn't get touched upon in this movie. She's kind of the straight, stoic character in this movie and is really intensely focused. But she's still a woman and still vulnerable and feminine. She's interesting and funny as well. David [Goyer] and I actually talked about it as well, that if we were to spin it off, that she'd be able to be a little more funnier and a little more self-deprecated and not take herself so seriously.

So if we were to pit Abigail versus the most famous vampire slayer, Buffy, who would win?

JESSICA: (Laughs) I don't want to get in trouble with her but she'd be a tough match. Abigail's got better weapons. Buffy's got stakes and all but Abigail could kill from a hundred yards away. It's logical. No offense to her.

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