Zoe Saldana is known for playing strong female characters. It usually requires hours of makeup and a lot of blue and green paint but she does it so well. It’s not hard to understand why she is in high demand to play these roles. Zoe is also a hard working mom and woman who understands the importance of what she does. It was evident when she sat down and got excited to talk with a room full of women.
Zoe plays another strong female, Gamora, in the first Guardians of the Galaxy movie and reprises the role in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2 releasing on May 5th. Last month, during my time on the #GotGVol2Event, myself and 24 other bloggers sat down with Zoe to talk about her newest adventure playing Gamora.
About the Strong Female Roles in the Film
I loved the three strong women characters in this movie. Mantis, Nebula and Gamora, Middle child. channeling her older sister for the role. I would love to take a break from science fiction females.
I was very excited, there were three female characters in this movie, and they all were going to provide three different essences, you know? Like, because Mantis just resembles such an innocent creature, and Nebula’s so angry. She’s so angry. And Gamora is so like, maternal. She’s turned over this new leaf. In the first movie, she was so selfish. It was about getting away, and running away from her father. And now it’s about keeping this family together and keeping them always on track. So she went the opposite of who she was in the first movie.
On Getting her Maternal Inspiration for the Role
I’m the middle child of three sisters, I was never the Gamora. My sister Marielle is more the Gamora. She keeps us on track and everything. I was always the f*ck up. I was always the one, it’s like, Zoe, focus, focus, I’m like, squirrel! Middle kids are sort of, I don’t know, it’s the title that they give you. You don’t take any responsibility, you don’t finish what you start, and you never obey your parents, you know? So, that was me. So channeling something in Gamora, I think I was just thinking about my sister. About, the responsibility that she must’ve put upon herself to help my mom raise my younger sister and I.
On Women Empowerment and Strong Female Roles
I love it. I do, I do. But, you know, I would like to take a break from playing, you know, kick ass science fiction females. I’ve been doing it for over 10 years, I’m kind of tired.
Growing up, when I was little, I only had two icons that I can reference, I’d watch those movies until my tape would break. It was Ellen Ripley from Aliens, and Sarah Connor from Terminator. I would watch these movies endlessly. And then it was, Jamie Lee Curtis, when Katherine Bigelow did that movie, Blue Steel, and James Cameron also did that movie, True Lies, I had her as a reference. But other than that, I was always watching action movies told through the eyes of males and stuff, but always feeling that gap, that void, you know?
I feel like I did take it upon myself to just be happy with the fact that I took a gamble on these movies for a first time, they ended up being super special, and they went into sequels. I didn’t think of this, trust me. It was not my idea. I had my responsibility to fulfill them. But once I was there, I didn’t want to be better about it. I wanted to acknowledge that maybe, maybe it means something. Maybe it is important that I’m a part of those women that are filling in that gap so that women can have, I don’t know, more options, more references to look into.
What she Wants Young Girls to Take Away from her Role as Gamora
I think that it’s okay to still be vulnerable, and be strong, you know? I think that for some reason, we take it upon ourselves, or where we’re told, that you have to be one thing or the other. And I think that vulnerability is strength, and being strong that means that you have to be vulnerable. So, I hope young women take that. I don’t see Gamora as a strong character. I see her as someone that’s tired, annoyed, but she’s very vulnerable.
On her Stunt Double and Doing Stunts Herself
Zoe has some amazing action scenes in the movie. We asked her about her involvement in the stunts and her stunt woman.
Her name is Leanne, and she’s phenomenal. And she really did all the parts where Gamora looks absolutely like, unbelievably, like, just cool, that’s Leanne. And all the parts where I’m, like, posing, and taking out my sword and stuff, that’s me. But I did do a lot of those jumps. I would do a lot of the stunts that she would do, but like, the PG-13 version. Because, one, I can’t do them. And two, it’s a liability to the film if I get killed or something.
But I posted something on Instagram. There is a jump that I did. They made me jump from like, three stories or something, like, a 30 foot jump. And I was on wires, but I don’t know, I still can’t remember if somebody told me, and I just brain farted, or somebody forgot to tell me that I was going to free fall. Like, I was not going to feel the tension on the wires. So when they said action, and I jumped, ’cause obviously I don’t like to take my time because there’s so many men watching you. I jumped, and thought I was dying. I was like, help me! And then James Gunn was like, yeah, your face was kind of awful there. Like you have to do it again. And I was just like, oh my god. So I did it again. You guys can watch it, it’s on Instagram. But as soon as I land, I was like, I don’t want to do this again. Like, the girly girl came out of me.
Here is the Instagram post she was referencing:
Zoe talked some more about her relationships with both Peter and Nebula that I will come back and talk about after the movie opens. I don’t want to spoil anything for anyone so be sure to come back after you have seen the movie!
Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2 releases nationwide on May 5th.
For up to date information about the newest Marvel blockbuster be sure to follow the Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 on their social channels and use the hashtag #GotGVol2.
I will be back all this week and next with exclusive interviews and behind the scene coverage from the cast and crew of Guardians of the Galaxy Vol.2. Be sure to check back.
Be sure to check out my other posts from the #GotGVol2Event
Photo Credit for Interview pictures: Louise Bishop / MomStart.com