Tai Freligh interviews Connie Nielsen…
Connie Nielsen is a Danish actress who first gained fame for her portrayal of Princess Lucilla in Gladiator with Russell Crowe back in 2000 and has done extensive movie and television work since then, most recently as Queen Hippolyta in Wonder Woman and as Claire Seth in The Confessions, in U.S. theaters now. I asked her about The Confessions, Wonder Woman, Justice League and Stratton and tossed in some fun speed round questions too.
Tell me about your character Claire Seth and how she fits into this meeting of the world’s greatest leaders in Germany?
These meets often invite VIP guests – celebrities, actors, musicians – I play Claire Seth, one of the most successful writers of all time of children’s fiction.
What did you do to get into character for an acclaimed children’s author?
She was written to be a Brit but living in a sort of Euro zone. I use voice and costume to a large extent to inhabit a character. The script had an underlying tension and anxiety which I imbibed and internalized. I have always written since I was a young girl so writing is a loved experience. We lived on the set where we were shooting, at a large spa-like hotel on the northern German coast with an eerie quality which had housed a G8 meeting.
How do you think this film will be received by U.S. audiences?
American audiences are often receptive to European films and I think they will love this film.
What was your favourite part of making The Confessions, an entirely different kind of movie than Wonder Woman?
I loved working with Tony Servillo, the genius Italian actor. He remained somewhat in character throughout the filming and only really broke the curtain one time when his family came to visit from Naples – bringing giant, absolutely fresh Mozzarella which he served to us all – unbelievable food.
I thoroughly enjoyed Wonder Woman. Have you been surprised by how wildly successful the movie has been?
Gratified and grateful for the reception of this film.
Any funny set stories working with Gal Gadot?
The first time I met Gal I was in the make up trailer inside a tanning tent getting spray tanned – a uniquely clammy experience – when, as I step out of the tent, naked but for a thong, Gal is whipping off her clothes to get into the tent – and that’s where we said hello the first time. Playing her mother added an extra twist to awkward.
Can you tell us anything about your role in Justice League?
Sorry, only that Hippolyta is a badass.
Do you think there’s a role for Hippolyta in Wonder Woman 2 or is it too early?
Dunno, but I hope so.
Did you have fun playing Sumner in Stratton?
Yes – she was an awesome character!
What’s up next for you in terms of projects?
Am in the middle of shooting a mini-series for Danish Television based on the acclaimed book, Liberty, by Jakob Ejersbo. After that I play Gertrude in Hamlet.
How do you survive the zombie apocalypse?
I camp out at Costco with plenty of ammunition, and let the fun begin.
You just celebrated a birthday- favourite gift ever?
An English translation of the Iliad from the 17th century.
What are you reading right now?
The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin by Marsha Gessen.
If you weren’t an actress, what would you be?
A lawyer, juvenile justice/innocence project, or NGO worker.
Personal accomplishment you are most proud of?
Human Needs Project’s KIBERA TOWN CENTER providing millions of gallons of water to Kibera residents, showers and toilets, IT, education, talent and high speed internet to people living in the largest slum in East Africa.
A G8 meeting is being held at a luxury hotel on the German coast. The world’s most powerful economists are gathered to enact important provisions that will deeply influence the world economy. One of the guests is a mysterious Italian monk, invited by Daniel Roché, the director of the International Monetary Fund. He wants the monk to receive his confession, that night, in secret. The next morning, Roché is found dead…
Connie Nielsen (Wonder Woman), Toni Servillo (Gomorrah), Daniel Auteuil (Jean de Florette), and Lambert Wilson (The Matrix Reloaded) star in Award-winning director Roberto Andò’s The Confessions, premiering in US theaters this July from Uncork’d Entertainment.
We thank Connie Nielsen for taking the time to chat with us here at Flickering Myth. In addition to acting, she is also the founder of Human Needs Project and Road To Freedom Scholarships. Connie can be found on social media at the handles below:
Tai Freligh is a Los Angeles-based writer and can be found on Twitter.