When doing interviews during press junkets, it’s not often that we get three women together. I can only think of one other time we had 3 of the women of a cast together from a movie. So when I heard that Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff and Elizabeth Debicki would be doing the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol 2 Interview would be happening with them together, I was excited. There is something nice about having friends chat with friends. And that is what the interview was, just like a bunch of girls talking. Beautiful, strong and Marvel women, see what they have to share.
Karen Gillan, Pom Klementieff and Elizabeth Debicki
You ladies all have very elaborate makeup in the movie, tell us about that process, or something that surprised you that we wouldn’t know about putting your makeup on each day.
Karen: Well mine takes about four hours in the morning, and essentially I have the character’s skin glued to my face, which is really as close as I could get to her which is pretty cool. And it’s intense and slightly claustrophobic. (Laughing) It’s become part of my ritual, regarding like getting into character. Like one time I did a rehearsal without the makeup, and I did not feel like her at all, so it’s become a vital part of the process for me which is cool.
Pom: Oh me oh yeah. For me, it’s much easier because it’s my skin tones, so it’s like a beauty makeup in a way. And so I need two hours to get completely ready, hair makeup and clothes. And yeah like basically I wear a prosthetics, on my forehead, it’s just the beginning of the antennas, and then with the CGI, they make it much bigger.
Karen: Yeah an Oscar-winning makeup artist, it’s amazing.
What about the eyes?
Pom: I wear contact lenses in my eyes, really big ones that cover my whole eye. Like there’s no white in my eye almost. And so same, I feel like claustrophobic, and I have tunnel vision, so it makes me feel like in my own world, which is kind of good for the character too. So yeah and the antennas I kind of like forget about them and people are like, oh you have something weird on your forehead but me I’m just like yeah whatever. (Laughing)
Elizabeth: I‘ve got it the easiest because I just sort of sit there and someone paints me (Laughing). It’s sticky and cold and but I love it- the first day I thought, you know, it was a bit overwhelming the whole paint situation. And then I came to set, and I said hi to Zoe, and I said what time did you come to work, and she said like three AM. I had a very civil call of like six AM. I thought I am never complaining about makeup ever again. So and I also asked her for some tips.
And she said you just have to be very Zen, just be very patient. So I would just sort of plug into a podcast. I think it’s about an hour and a half and then with the wig cap as well. And then actually for me the most time consuming and hectic part of Ayesha is the costume and that gold dress is almost entirely metal. And it weighs so much.
We used to call it the Ayesha Taco because (Laughing) the whole bottom of the dress is a great big circular metal thing and they would fold it up like a taco, and then I would walk up the stairs. I get placed where I am for the day. It feels like a small child is hanging onto my back.
What’s it like being part of a film that has such a devoted fandom, especially for Karen because you also have Whovians.
Karen: It’s such a cool sensation actually to be part of something that people care about because that’s not always the case. Usually, you’re trying so hard just to make people care about your project. But with things like Dr. Who and Guardians, I mean it just has like this built in fan base. They’re just so accepting and passionate. They care about all the decisions you make, and you just feel like really special for a second. (laughs)
In GOTG Vol 2, Nebula shows that other side of herself and helps the audience understand why she does the things that she does. How important was that for you to show that she’s really not a bad person, she just had bad things happen to her?
Karen: Yes, thank you. (Laughing) In the first movie, we saw this sort of evil super villain watching from the sidelines a little bit. But this time we really understand why. And for me, like it’s my job as an actor to sort of be her lawyer and explain to everyone like why she is justified in doing these things, and I think we achieve that in the movie, which is really cool. And it was just so important to me to give her those layers because it isn’t exactly appealing to just have a bad guy for no reason.
Pom, playing Mantis, what was it like being insulted by Drax all the time.?
Pom: It was really funny, but I had not to laugh (Laughing) just laughing inside, it’s fun. She’s innocent, she’s like a child, so whatever he tells her she’s like “okay, if you say so,” you know?
You all play three strong female roles in the movie in your own different ways. What do you want little girls to take away from your female characters?
Pom: That it’s okay to be imperfect and not be like any everyone else. To be weird sometimes and it’s you, that’s what makes you interesting.
Elizabeth: Well for Ayesha- (Laughing) Don’t be like Ayesha (Laughing) someone said on the carpet, and what similarities are between you and Ayesha I’m like none, I really hope none. (Laughing)
She doesn’t take no for an answer.
Elizabeth: That’s true. I think the thing about Ayesha is she is very justified in what she’s doing. I mean, he steals from her, and she’s going to get what she wants back. And I think, you know, she’s very strong. I suppose her moral compass is slightly askew and she’s merciless. But I think, maybe her strength and also that I guess what I like about her is that she isn’t perfect, she’s quite fallible. Even though I mean the irony is they’re genetically modified to be perfect, and she’s extremely imperfect. I would say you could look at Ayesha and then decide to be compassionate (Laughing)
Karen: For me, your character, I like seeing a woman in a leadership position, a woman can be the boss.
Elizabeth: Yes. Absolutely yes.
For Elizabeth and Karen you’ve been part of the Marvel family for a while, and like you said earlier, Marvel fans are very passionate, very loyal. For you two ladies, what’s it like now being in the Marvel family and would you like to see your characters expand a lot more within the Marvel family?
Elizabeth: It a huge privilege as an actor, like Karen, said, to be a part of something that people really want to see and that they care about so deeply. And I suppose the first interaction I had with it was at Comic-Con last year and it really was on my birthday, so it was all about me. (Laughing)
And when we went into – it’s all age – and there are so many people there, it’s sort of like pure joy that just shoots out and it’s incredible. I found it very overwhelming, and I sort of kept getting very emotional in interviews like just after because it’s rare in life to be a part of something that people love so much and they care about so much.
Strangely enough, I wasn’t really nervous about watching the film or being there last night. Usually, I get very nervous. But I just have the sense that- I’d seen it already, and I think it’s wonderful. But I just knew that it was going to be accepted with such love. And I had hoped that we would be too. Because we’re new to all this and that explains how I feel about it.
Pom: It’s not just a Marvel movie, it’s a James Gunn. I think he’s such a genius. And he really reinvented the superhero movie; he made it something really human.
And it really talks about family. There is action, it’s also hilarious, and it’s also so moving and heartbreaking. It’s so many things at the same time.
Karen, what are your hopes for Nebula for the next movie? Is it joining the Guardians, is it defeating your father? What do you think she should do?
Karen: Okay I feel like she has one clear agenda, which is to kill Thanos. I really hope that she is the one that gets to do that so I’m crossing my fingers for that would be like therapeutic (Laughing) That would be cool.
I’d like to see her relationship with Gamora maybe get a little healthier, however not so healthy that they don’t still try to kill each other because that’s so much fun. (Laughing) I want her to be bad but like a little bit good.
Read my other Karen Gillan post.
Guardians of the Galaxy opens May 5, 2017
*I was invited by Disney/Marvel to attend a special press trip to share my experience with my readers. All opinions are my own.