Daily updates from the first annual AFI DALLAS International Film Festival presented by Target, founding sponsor Victory Park, March 22 to April 1, 2007

Saturday, March 24, 2007

Actor's Corner: Laura Jordan

Laura Jordan crosses generations in her most recent two roles

Actress Laura Jordan places her stamp on the AFI DALLAS International Film Festival by playing a punk rock bride to be in the comedy THE NIGHT OF THE WHITE PANTS (screening Friday 3/23 at 9:30PM) and a budding student movement war protester in the 60’s time capsule BERKELEY (screening Friday 3/23 at 10:15PM). Whether she is playing verbal ping pong between Nick Stahl and Academy Award nominee Tom Wilkinson in the
former or serving as the lead character’s fiery muse in the latter, Jordan makes both movies "go" whenever she's onscreen.

Q: Is it harder to play a character who does a lot of drugs and sleeps with another man several years older than her on her wedding night or a character who doesn't shave her legs?

A: Both Felicia (White Pants) and Sadie (Berkeley) are confident women with few inhibitions, and they don’t give a shit what people think. I have a lot of fun playing strong, impulsive women. There is maybe more Sadie in me, but I'd be lying if I said I didn't have a wild side too.

Q: You worked with a female director (Amy Talkington) in THE NIGHT OF THE WHITE PANTS and a male director (Bobby Roth) in BERKELEY. What is a general difference in style between the two that someone not on the set wouldn't naturally assume?

A: I'm not sure what people would naturally assume, but every director works differently and not necessarily because they are male or female. And every actor has different needs. This is a very special relationship. Both Bobby and Amy are friends with their actors, they support us and that's important for me. Bobby could be hard on me at times but that was a good thing.

Q: Both films were labors of love for the filmmakers. How much difference does that make for you as actor while you're filming? And afterwards?

A: It makes all the difference for me. These are the projects I look for. They don't have a huge budget, so everyone involved most likely feels some passion or connection to the project. And you have to fight to get it made. I like that.

Q: You studied French at The University of Paris. What would be your second choice of foreign university and language?

A: Oh, wow, that would be a great choice to have. I actually grew up speaking French and studied literature in Paris. This is tough, maybe somewhere completely different, like Japan. I spent time in Poland once and started to catch on a little - an Eastern European language would be cool too.

Q: What's it like to do a love scene with the director's son?

A: Ha, ha. Bobby would like that question. No, I don’t think it felt any different from the awkwardness of any make-out scene. You just sort of do it. I know when I auditioned for the role, I didn't know it was his son and I really challenged him, and Bobby got a kick out of it.

Q: Or an Academy Award nominee?

A: I don't think I was considering that in the moment.

Q: In real life would you be a punk rock bride or a traditional June bride?

A: Something simple and not too planned.

by John Wildman, Staff Writer