TheHubNow caught up with actress Amber Chaney this week to talk about her new film, THE HUNGER GAMES.
Based on “The Hunger Games” trilogy of young adult novels by Suzanne Collins, the film features Chaney as Lavinia the Avox Girl, a Capitol servant who seems familiar to heroine Katniss Everdeen.
For our exclusive Q&A, we pitched her six (and only six) questions for a feature we’re going to call – yep, you guessed it – SIX QUESTIONS. Why not five? Too cliche.
1) Tell us how you scored the role of Avox Girl.
I was working on this play called “Circle Mirror Transformation,” for which I was playing the part of Teresa. I get this call from my agent asking me to audition for this film (they used a code name) that would shoot in April. I said, “I can’t do it. That will interfere with the show run.” She said she understood and sent her apologies to the casting director, Jackie Burch.
Jackie called me on my home phone that day or the next day and said, “no… you don’t understand… this is ‘The Hunger Games.’” I told her that I had heard of the books, but I just didn’t realize how big a deal it was. She said she LOVED me for the part of the Avox Girl and to tape my audition ASAP! So, I set up some lights in my kitchen and let ‘er rip.
My agent called me later in the show run (just before I was about to go on stage) and said I got the part, and that they would work with me on my shoot dates, so I wouldn’t have to miss any of the play. It was bittersweet. I was jumping up and down in my dressing room, but I wasn’t allowed to tell anyone… the whole project being top-secret and all. I arranged a big dinner with my family for Easter and told them I had huge news; that I would be in a huge movie, but I couldn’t tell them which one. We all laughed about it. It was great!
2) It’s one thing to play a character with lots of dialogue, but your Avox Girl can’t speak given her lack of tongue. Describe the complexities of playing a character where you need to communicate emotion without using your voice.
Well… in the acting program I was trained in we weren’t allowed to speak in our improv class for the first year. So, this really wasn’t a stretch. Lavinia (the Avox Girl’s name) has – just like any other character – an objective and an obstacle. Usually the character’s obstacle isn’t so blatant as “missing a tongue so I can’t cry for help,” so you really have to do your homework. I created a huge back story for her. Why would someone who lives a privileged life in the Capitol be fleeing to a District 13 that may or may not exist? I think it has to do with secrets… secrets that Finnick gets into in “Mockingjay” [the third book in the series].
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