If the wait for the next movie in the 'Twilight Saga' feels interminable, join the club. To bridge the gap between now and the 'New Moon' release in November, we spoke to actress Justine Wachsberger, who plays Gianna, a human who willingly works for deadly vampires. Wachsberger, who will also appear in Summit's 'Sorority Row,' told us how it felt to experience her big break among Volturi vampires, why her character has such a dangerous occupation, and whether Robert Pattinson's abs are really that ripped.
So this is a big year for you - cast in 'Sorority Row' and the sequel to that little "Twilight' movie.
"I know! Pretty exciting."
What were you doing before getting these roles?
"Before this, I was in school at USC. So I didn't do much acting before this, beside acting classes. I was taking classes forever, and obviously, I started auditioning about a year ago."
"It was very exciting because [New Moon] was such a big audition and I knew that there was such a buzz around the upcoming 'Twilight Saga' movies, but it was just a regular audition."
Did you realize how huge the franchise was when you signed on?
"I already knew - I went to see 'Twilight,' and I do sometimes read Us Weekly and the tabloids, and realized it was such a big deal to be in this movie."
Did anything surprise you about filming 'New Moon'?
"I thought it would be harder to be on set, just because of the buzz and the fact that all these actors started as unknown and became so big - not all of them, but the majority. I thought I would arrive on set and kind of be an outsider and not really fit in. On the contrary, everyone was really nice, really down the Earth. It was a very friendly atmosphere. I was a little stressed out at the beginning, like 'I'm getting to Vancouver on set, what is it going to be like?' It was actually a really good surprise."
Who was the most fascinating to see in action?
"I love Dakota Fanning. I've always been a big fan. A very talented actress at such a young age."
It's hard to figure out why your character puts herself into such a dangerous situation. Was it difficult for you to play a character whose motivation is so mysterious?
"I don't think so, because I think every human being in general, in life, has a kind of mystery to her. I don't think that everyone is one facet or another. I think in that case, it wasn't very hard to portray her."
Did you make any decisions about Gianna that weren't necessarily dictated by [writer] Stephenie Meyer or [director] Chris Weitz?
"I think obviously you have to tell a story about your character in your mind, but could I lay it out there in front of you? I don't think so. But I created a past for her. I think she's aware of the risk to her, the risk of being killed, but her desire to be immortal and her desire to be part of this world is stronger than her fear to die."
"I think she's kind of in the middle between good and evil. She's the thin line between being human and working for vampires. She's the one that brings Edward and Bella to the Volturi. In those ways, she's that middle line."
You said once that Gianna might return in the movie adaptation of 'Breaking Dawn.' Have you heard any updates?
"No, I didn't say it actually like that, I was misquoted. I was saying that I hoped there was a possibility. I don't know much about 'Breaking Dawn' at all at this point. Right now they're just focused on filming 'Eclipse.' I hope they'll bring Gianna back, but who knows?"
We can clear that misquote up for you, then. No confirmed reports of Gianna in 'Breaking Dawn.'
"I just hope she comes back!"
How exposed to fan mania were you during the week you filmed? Was it a closed set?
"It was a pretty closed set. Where I was filming was mostly in studio, so fans didn't have access at all to that area. I knew that before I came on set, when they were filming outdoors, it was just crazy. There were fans everywhere. There was so much security. They had never seen something like that in Vancouver, as far as the fans go. But I haven't had any weird encounters."
Are you a little worried about your success in 'Twilight,' given the experience that Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart have had with fans?
"I'm not afraid - I do have a small part. I'm more grateful than anything to be a part of this. it opens so many doors for me on an acting level and a career level. "
We've seen a crazy rumor floating around that Robert Pattinson is not quite as fit as he appears - that his abs are painted on. Can you deny that one, for the record?
"His stomach is definitely his stomach. I don't think it's painted on. Not that I heard of, at least! He has a pretty nice stomach."