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Eva Green weaves magic on the big and small screens

By Bayani San Diego Jr.
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 18:01:00 03/20/2011

Filed Under: Celebrities, Entertainment (general), Cinema, Television

MANILA, Philippines?Eva Green, French actress famous for her roles as femme fatale on Bernardo Bertolucci?s ?The Dreamers? and Bond Girl on Martin Campbell?s ?Casino Royale,? plays a witch once again on the series ?Camelot,? which airs on AXN Beyond starting April 4.

She?s not the least bit worried about being typecast as a witch. After all, she played Serafina Pekkala, the Witch Queen, in the movie ?The Golden Compass.?

On ?Camelot,? she portrays Morgan, nemesis of Arthur and Merlin.

In a conference call with Asian media outfits (including the Inquirer), Green (who was in New York at the time) explained that she doesn?t regard Morgan as pure ?evil,? the way she was characterized in the past.

?She?s damaged,? Green said of Morgan. ?She was exiled by her father to a nunnery for 50 years because she discovered that he murdered her mother. He wanted to silence her. Well, 50 years gave her plenty of time to be bitter.?

She described Morgan as ?complex.?

?At the start, she seemed tough and vengeful, but little by little, I also tried to show the human being ? the little girl in her.?

Working with an acting coach in Paris, she endeavored to present the different colors of Morgan.

?She?s fueled by revenge, but she?s also vulnerable. She has tough and tender moments.?

Television, she explained, allowed her to explore the various facets of Morgan Le Fay.

?She?s a saint, a healer and a witch. She?s all these and more,? she pointed out. Morgan is also a feminist heroine who?s often misunderstood, as a gutsy leader who?s ahead of her time.

?She realized that since she lived in a world dominated by men, she had to be more political and manipulative [to survive]. She had to gamble a lot because she was disappointed and disillusioned with men. In the end, she surrounded herself with strong women. She?s very modern in that way.?

She prepared herself by doing research on Morgan?s world.

?I read a few books on the myth. This is a different version of the Camelot we all know. As an actress, the challenge is to bring out the humanity in each character.?

She considered herself lucky because series writer Chris Chibnail was always on hand to help. ?We had a wonderful collaboration. If I was unhappy with the way my character behaved, we could always [revisit] it.?

If she were a witch herself, Green said, she would ?wield my power to do good in the world.?

She is particularly disturbed by the earthquake, tsunami and nuclear threats in Japan. ?It?s terrible. I read the newspapers every day. I think about Japan all the time. I hope the situation will improve soon. I hope the people in Japan will be safe.?

Green will play another ?powerful witch? in Tim Burton?s movie version of the cult TV show ?Dark Shadows.? She was recently cast as Angelique the sorceress opposite Johnny Depp?s Barnabas the vampire.

?I?m looking forward to it. It?s a dream come true because Angelique is a great, mad character,? she quipped.

In real life, Green insisted that she?s neither a femme fatale nor a vivacious vamp, nor a wily witch.

?Nobody knows me,? she said. ?I?m not a femme fatale. If you could only see me now, you?d change your mind.?

Away from the biz, she indulges in simple pleasures like listening to classical music, visiting fine-dining restaurants and walking her pet terrier.

?My dog Griffin is well. He?s now with my sister in France,? she related. ?He doesn?t travel with me that often. It would be cruel [to bring him on the road]. He prefers to stay in the countryside. He doesn?t like the city that much.?

?Camelot? premieres April 4 on AXN Beyond.

?30? still rocks
By Oliver M. Pulumbarit, contributor

STILL clever and witty, the weekly sitcom ?30 Rock? unapologetically satirizes the eccentricities of American show biz. Former ?Saturday Night Live (SNL)? writer and performer Tina Fey?s brainchild regularly peeks into the otherworldly, but still has very accessible behind-the-scenes debacles.

Fey is still brilliant as self-deprecating but motherly Liz Lemon, head writer of a sketch comedy series and often the butt of immature jokes. The rapport between Liz and her network executive friend Jack (Alec Baldwin) is still being explored properly, their close platonic friendship is a likeable paradox that creates inspired comedic situations.

?30 Rock?s? potential gets further realized with every season. Its characters get themselves repeatedly involved in fiascos during the creative process. A specific theme translates riotously throughout every episode, but some things remain constant: Liz has to balance her personal time with her work duties, but she often experiences the blurring of both. She sees to the needs of her spoiled stars, Tracy (Tracy Morgan) and Jenna (Jane Krakowski), both prone to making bad career moves.

The previous season was characteristically star-studded. There were appearances by ?Mad Men?s? Jon Hamm (Liz?s dumb ex-boyfriend), Matt Damon (Liz?s pilot boyfriend) and James Franco (who played himself, but obsessed with a ?body pillow?). The involvement of those guests enhanced the hilarity; Julianne Moore appeared as one of Jack?s girlfriends in a subplot that wasn?t as funny as the show?s other relationship arcs, but it was still quite watchable.

Its current season has the memorable live episode guest-starring ?Seinfeld? actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who also plays Liz Lemon?in flashbacks! Fey?s ?SNL? friends Bill Hader, Chris Parnell, and Rachel Dratch (who appeared as multiple characters in Season 1) also appear in the unique and tightly presented episode.

?30 Rock? airs Saturdays, 8:30 p.m. on JackTV.

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