Teresa Palmer I Am Number Four InterviewSince filming this, have you gotten back on a motorcycle?
Teresa Palmer: "Yes, and in Cambodia. That was a different experience riding on a motorbike in Cambodia. It was crazy, and I was filming as well - shooting a film called Say Nothing. It's very different from shooting an American movie. They just put you on a bike and there's a crew of 10 people. They're like, 'All right, start riding and we'll film you.' I was like, 'Wait - is there a stunt team.' It's just so crazy." I let everyone know, 'Don't worry. I know how to ride a Ducati.'"
Was it easy to do stunts in your wardrobe or was it kind of restrictive?
Teresa Palmer: "Well, we actually had to make copies of the outfit with extra stretch in them. So under the arms we had extra stretch. In between the legs, we had extra stretch because I had these huge kicks that I'm doing and in such tight pants I can’t do that. So we had lots of different copies of things."
What's your normal choice of outfits?
Teresa Palmer: "I'm actually more of a rocker, like Number Six. But I'm wearing a girlie dress today because I wanted to sort of mix it up. But I definitely channel that rock star look in my own fashion."
Did you keep any of Number Six's clothing?
Teresa Palmer: "No. I wanted to keep the jacket big time but they usually hold onto the clothes just in case you have reshoots. But hopefully in a few months I can have a ring up and see if they'll give me one. There's like 10 of them so she can spare on for me."
Number Six really kicks ass. How much fun was it to play a character like that?
Teresa Palmer: "She does. It was very empowering to play Number Six. She’s intimidating, but also I think equally as alluring and charming and sassy. There’s definitely something mysterious about her, too. I think when we’re introduced to her, we don’t really know if she’s one of the good guys or one of the bad guys. 'Could she be a Mogadorian?' And I like that about her. It was such a blessing to play such a cool character."
The film's set up for a sequel. Is there a chance Number Four will end up with Number Six?
Teresa Palmer: "Who knows? Just putting it out there. There may be a love triangle. I think it was hinted at in this movie, and there’s definitely a bit of sexual chemistry between them. There’s also some animosity and competitiveness between Number Four and Number Six. But, under all of that, I think there’s a little bit of a romantic spark, as much as neither of them would ever admit it. But I always think about that line... Maybe it’s that they are only going to fall in love with one human girl, but maybe it's the alien romance which is the real deal."
Have they talked to you about a sequel?
Teresa Palmer: "They have, yeah. They've discussed it. It just really depends on if audiences enjoy the film and if they embrace it. If they do, then I would welcome it with open arms. I’d feel so excited to play Number Six again, and just develop her character further."
Was the explosion all green screen or were you fairly close to any of that?
Teresa Palmer: No, I wasn't - movie magic. What happened was I just walked out of the house and I was doing my swagger and D.J. Caruso was like, 'Go get ‘em, girl! This is your shot.' He's like, 'Remember, it’s in slow motion.' I was like, 'Okay!' So I was trying very hard to make it sexy and alluring, but I'm wearing these high combat boots and I'm walking in sand so I kept rolling my ankle. He was like, 'Stop wobbling! You’re wobbling so much.' And then my sunglasses would fall off and I’d trip over. Everyone was like, 'What are you doing? This is meant to be the iconic shot of the movie.' So the one that’s actually in the movie that is probably the only take that worked. You’d walk off and two guys would run in really quickly with a big green screen. Then you'd cut and walk out and we exploded the house."
Are we going to see those bloopers on the DVD?
Teresa Palmer: "Probably. I actually saw it recently and at one point I do a hair flip, I do my hair flip and it gets caught in my sunglasses and I still tried to keep it up. So I'm walking with it across my face. He's like, 'What are you doing?'"
Were you impressed with how that scene looked in the final film?
Teresa Palmer: "I was. I could not believe how epic that was. It was very exciting and I think it's a very cool introduction to my character. That music by Adele comes in and it’s pumping, and she’s so tough. I felt very proud of Miss Six."
And the audience doesn't know at that point in the film who exactly Number Six is.
Teresa Palmer: "Yeah, exactly. It's very exciting and I think D.J. did a good job of placing her in the movie at sporadic points. She comes on screen and then she goes just as quick as she’s there, and it makes you wonder, 'Who is she?'"
And you got to keep your accent. How did you convince them to let you do that?
Teresa Palmer: "I did. It was awesome. It was actually very refreshing to use my natural dialect because I don’t usually get to do that. I auditioned for the film in my Australian accent. The casting directors actually said, 'Come in. She doesn’t have to be American. You can use your natural accent.' So, I did. And then there were some discussions as to whether I’d be British or if I could be Australian, and we ended up choosing the Australian dialect. However, after we were done, I got a call saying, 'Everyone loves the character and the accent. The only problem is that we can’t understand you in some of the words.' So I had to go in and ADR it, which is additional dialogue recording, and Americanize some words. And so for me to listen back to that I think it's kind of a strange thing because it’s split in the middle between American and Australian. I wanted everyone to know that I actually was doing an Australian accent but because it’s such a thick South Aussie accent, it was hard to understand. [...]It is a thick accent and we don't hit the Rs the way you guys do. One line in particular that I had to change, which is one of my favorite lines in the movie, is when she says, 'Lucky for you I saved your ass.' And instead I had to be like, 'Lucky for you I saved your asssss.'"
What kind of funny stuff happened on the set?
Teresa Palmer: "There was always a lot of laughter. Guillermo, our D.P., was so funny. He always was dancing with us and doing the salsa in between with like me and Dianna. He’d spin us around and flip us upside down. It was so funny. Everyone was goofing around a lot. Alex [Pettyfer] would play pranks on me every now and then. He would knock on my trailer door and be like, 'You’re wrapped,' and I was like, 'Oh, cool,' get out of my outfit, put on my casual clothes, and head to my driver’s car. 'Wow, I'm done for the day. Awesome,' and then I would hear Alex like running off, like, 'Mawhawwww.' One of the P. A.’s would be like running up. 'Where are you going? What are you doing?' He was a bit of a prankster."
What was your most difficult stunt in I Am Number Four?
Teresa Palmer: "I had two stunts that were pretty hard. One of them, I didn’t really have to do a lot but it was scary. I was on the ground and I was picked up by my leg and flung upside down 60 feet high in the air, whilst kicking and screaming. That was very petrifying because I’m scared of heights. D.J. said, 'All right, harness up. This is where you’re going.' And I was up there [on a huge crane] and I remember just thrashing around. At one point I looked down and all the crew were like little these ants. It was so scary and I was only just being held up by my leg. I was like, 'Gosh, imagine if this snapped right now. I would be mincemeat.' Then the other difficult one was just the scene in the cafeteria where we’re fighting alongside each other - Four and Six - and I’m trying to fight these seven foot tall stunt guys with my alien sword. Everything was choreographed, but you have to hit your marks very precisely because they are swinging at you and you’re counting beats in your head. At one point, I missed my mark. I just was there too long and I swung back and he hit me in the mouth with the sword. I thought that all my teeth had fallen out. I was trying to spit out my teeth. I was like, 'Let’s just keep going!' And then I realized my mouth was just numb. It was cool. I felt like that would actually happen to Number Six; she would get injured. So we just kept going. It gave me this adrenalin rush, so that was quite difficult."
Are you still doing the new Mad Max movie?
Teresa Palmer: "I do not know what’s happening with the Mad Max film. I was in negotiations on that movie when it was happening, and now the movie is not happening at the moment. I know it's on hiatus. But I would love to work with George Miller. I think he’s an incredible talent. I was supposed to work with him on another film called The Justice League of America a few years ago. I was going to play Talia al Ghul, but unfortunately that didn’t happen."
Is it true that you working in a mall and you got discovered?
Teresa Palmer: "That's sort of wrong. I was working in a mall, but I was doing character work. I would go to the supermarket and I would dress up as Strawberry Shortcake or Santa’s Little Helper, just to get extra money on the weekends. And I had signed up with an acting agent to do that because that was the extent of the acting work you could get in Adelaide at the time. Because of that, I ended up meeting this director called Murali Thalluri. He was 18 years old and he said, 'I want you to be in my movie.' I was like, 'What kind of a movie are you talking about?' He showed me the script and it was such a beautiful script. It was called 2:37 and it was about youth suicide. We ended up door-knocking to get money. I did my own hair and make-up, we were writing our own scenes, and the film had its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival. And that’s what kick-started my whole career."
You're the one who deflowered Harry Potter [Daniel Radcliffe in December Boys]?
Teresa Palmer: "I am the deflowerer of Harry Potter. That was fun."
You’ve got another movie coming out called Take Me Home Tonight and it takes place in the ‘80s?
Teresa Palmer: "Yes. It takes place in 1988 at a Labor Day party, all in one night."
Do you remember the '80s?
Teresa Palmer: "I was four. The oldest I was was four in the ‘80s. I was born in '86. It was quite interesting to go and live in that time because I had never experienced it before. I got to work with Topher Grace and Anna Faris who are comedic geniuses. They were both throwing in all this hilarious, unscripted humor. It's very exciting. It comes out March 4th. There’s the most amazing ‘80s soundtrack you can imagine, and crazy ‘80s hair. It’s so fun and upbeat and fast, and I’m very proud of the movie."
Is there anything accessory-wise or clothing-wise from the ‘80s that you wish we wore today?
Teresa Palmer: "I'm digging the cowlicks. I have a cowlick, like how they used to wear their hair flipped over with this big thing. I have about five cowlicks at the front of my hair, so it does that very easily. But I used to hate that look. I would constantly be trying to straighten out my hair so it didn’t look ‘80s. But now I’m really diggin’ that ’80s hairstyle. I think they should bring it back. Maybe Six can have that in the sequel - the '80s flip."
What can you say about Say Nothing?
Teresa Palmer: "It’s a very cool film. It's from the same people who did Animal Kingdom – it's the same production company, Blue-Tongue Films – and the director is Kieran-Darcy Smith. It’s an Australian dramatic thriller and it takes place in Cambodia. It’s two couples who go away on this holiday. It's sort of an ill-fated holiday because one of us goes missing and we have to go back to Australia and try and piece together what happened to my boyfriend in the film. It’s a very dark movie, and also a study on what would happen if something very tragic happened to you. How would you react in that circumstance? Joel Edgerton stars alongside me who's a very talented actor. It was great working with him."
Are you living here now or in Australia?
Teresa Palmer: "Both. I come back and forth between Adelaide and L.A., but mainly my base is here. I have a dog here now so that solidifies my residence."
What's the dog's name?
Teresa Palmer: "Luna. Luna Palmer."