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Rosie Alvarez

Rosie: "My ignorance probably helped
me during the audition".

Conducted by Phil Davies Brown
May 24th, 2004

I have something extremely special for our readers this week!! In her only UK interview to promote her movie Anatomy 2, I chatted with the beautiful and highly talented Rosie Alvarez. Rosie plays Lee in the sequel to Stefan Ruzowitsky's medical horror hit Anatomy, which is available to rent and buy now.

When did you first become interested in acting?
I was always interested in acting and had always dabbled around with performing. As I was forced to make educational choices in life, I thought it best to aim for a 'proper' career! I did a Bsc Hons in Psychology but after that I realised that I really needed to commit to something in life. Nothing much inspired me.....except for acting! So I went to drama school in London for two years and here I am.

You trained in theatre for 2 years, would you agree that this was absolutely vital to your learning process or do you feel you could have managed without training?
I knew that I could act and I knew that I had it in me, but I really did benefit from the training in so many different ways. The Poor School, although demanding, was a great experience for me. Training was essential for me personally, but I don't think that necessarily applies to all actors.

Your first feature film role was playing Lee in Anatomie 2, how did you hear about the project and can you tell us about the audition process?
My then agent Jilly Moore at JGM had luckily heard about the role. The casting director Celestia Fox was looking for a Filipina actress who could perhaps speak German. The audition process was pretty standard. I initially had a general interview with Celestia Fox who was lovely. After that, she forwarded me for an audition with the director (Stefan Ruzowitzky) and one of the producers (Jakob Claussen). They had come to London to audition actresses, and luckily they felt I was right to play 'Lee'.

Had you seen the first film and if so, were you looking forward to working with Stefan Ruzowitsky?
I'm afraid I was extremely ignorant before the audition! During the audition they asked me if I had heard of Franke Potente and 'Run Lola Run' and of course I had not! Big Doh! My ignorance probably helped me during the audition as I guess at least it didn't fluster me or anything! Once I eventually did see the first film, then I got really excited! However, my favourite film of his is 'The Inheritors' - it's totally amazing, and wonderfully original.

When you finally got the part, how much time did you have to prepare? Is it true that you had to learn German for the role?
I had about a month to prepare for the role. Yes I did indeed have to learn German for the role. I'm not fluent but I can certainly deal with a text. During that month I simply learnt as much as I possibly could. I love languages so it didn't feel like work. I had a couple of sessions with a German tutor who taught me how to pronounce German words. After that, I superimposed a Filipina (not English!) accent by listening to Filipina people speak German. However, the director didn't want the accent to be too strong as it would be less understandable. I also made a point of learning my co-actors' lines as you need to be able to react to what people are saying to you.

How long was the shoot and were you pleased with how it went?
The shoot was filmed on location in Berlin for one month and then in Munich for one month. I went back and forth to the UK, depending on the filming schedule. The shoot went really well and it was extremely exciting. I was so ecstatic because I was combining my two great passions; acting and languages!

Were there any scenes that were physically draining or even uncomfortable for you to shoot?
No. If ever there is any discomfort for me on a shoot its there for a reason. It always makes me laugh when the whole crew starts running around trying to make things nicer for me! If you're supposed to be shivering in a freezing cold lake, then it always comes off better if you really are cold!

How did you enjoy working with the rest of the cast?
The rest of the cast were lovely. Franke Potente, despite being the star that she is, is a wonderfully down to earth girl. Heike Makatsch was very friendly. Barnaby Metscurat is an amazing guy. Everyone was lovely. The actors were far too talented and open to let egos get in the way. As an actor, you have to allow yourself to be vulnerable. Once you get a big ego you are protecting yourself and thus are less vulnerable and less open which sometimes restricts your acting ability.

Were you pleased with the end result?
Yes and No. I liked the film and thought it was very stylish. There were things about myself that I didn't like - typical actor!

Is there anything that you would like to change if you could go back and play the part again?
Yes but I can't say what!

Which of the two films do you prefer and why?
I'm far too partial! Both films are different so in a way, it's hard to compare. However, I liked the way Ruzo filmed the sex scenes in both films. They said everything yet showed nothing.

The film received a mixed response from audiences and fans. I however applaud the bravery of Stefan Ruzowitsky for making the sequel as far removed from the first film as humanly possible. What are your thoughts on fan reaction?
You can't please them all. In any case, the German audience are particularly hard to define and predict. I guess at least fan reaction is always honest.

You seem to be playing a lot of medical roles, do you feel that people see you as caring and therefore feel that you would make a great doctor or nurse?
Ahahahahahahaha!!!! That's very sweet of you! Yes it is very strange! I always think of it as a big coincidence, but as a matter of fact, my parents both trained as nurses and actually met during their training. They ran nursing homes for many years and are always involved in caring for people in some way. Maybe it's something to do with them! In any case, in reality I would be a rubbish nurse or doctor!

All of your film roles so far have been European productions which I applaud you for as you clearly go after artistic movies, rather than whatever roles may make you the next big thing. What is it about European movies that attracts you to these projects?
I love Europe and feel very at home there. I also love European cinema and would love to do lots of French cinema as that is my strongest foreign language. Not only that, but when the French are good; they are amazing. I would like to be amazing too.

What are your plans for the near future?
I just want to act. Preferably in feature films but who knows what the future will bring.

"Thank you ever so much for taking part in this interview Rosie.
We wish you the best of luck in the future."

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