Exclusive: Twilight Saga Spotlights Human Actress Christian Serratos
As the ardor cools for The Twilight Saga: Eclipse, it’s easy to forget all the humans except that most desired one — Kristen Stewart‘s Bella. But there are the others, from the ever-surging actor Anna Kendrick as head geek Jessica to Billy Burke as poppa Swan.
And then there’s actress Christian Serratos‘s bespectacled Angela Webber, who kind of reflects the film’s own core girl-geek squad.
After the 20-year-old Serratos made it into The Twilight Saga, she started to tour the con circuit making sure that the humans other than Bella weren’t forgotten. So she made it to New York last October, to Anaheim this April and has had time to bare all for PETA. And her few moments of screen time in the installments reveals real flashes of talent — part of what she discusses in this exclusive interview conducted during one of those con excursions.
Though she has limited screen time again in the third installment, she does have this incredible ringside seat to see this Virgin-Vamp saga emerge and see how everyone has evolved in doing it. As close up to the center of the media circus as anyone, Serratos has not only witnessed the Twilight phenomenon from the inside out, she has felt the glare of that white hot spotlight that Kris Stewart and Rob Pattinson have been subjected to throughout.
Q: Now that you know the characters, do you just go with it or do you rehearse?
CS: We definitely go over our stuff, our lines and work together, even off-set when we want to. The only real rehearsals are to get the stunts down. So the Cullens and the vampires have to deal with that.
Q: Did the mood on set change over time since everyone was already like a family, or was there more pressure because of the success?
CS: If anything, it went the other way. Once everyone realized how intense it was, everyone calmed down and relaxed. “Let’s not think about it. Let’s just do what we’re here to do, make the fans happy and go home.”
Q: Are the scripts tight or are there some things you get to make up while you’re shooting?
CS: A lot of the improv was literally us trying to make each other mess up. It ended up working. It’s really cool. It’s funny to see what scenes they end up taking.
Q: It seems like all the actors have built a real sense of family.
CS: It has.
Q: Your character lasts throughout the series so you’re there for the long haul.
CS: Yeah. It’s been great. Everyone is definitely close knit. Everyone is family, we all take care of each other. We all pick on each other and so it’s great. I love everyone.
Q: Do you feel you learned anything from the more experienced actors on Twilight?
CS: Peter [Facinelli] who plays the dad, Dr. Carlisle — he’s pretty fatherly on set. But we all learn from each other.
Q: Do you crack each other up on the set?
CS: Yes. They’re not specifically planned, we just mess with each other in general. I’m usually picked on the most. I’m not kidding. I’m an easy target. They like to mess with me.
Q: What did you do to immerse yourself in the whole vampire universe?
CS: What was really cool about this particular project is that we didn’t have to. I mean, we did and we could, but we had the book.
Q: So you read the book beforehand?
CS: Oh, yeah.
Q: Some people advise that you shouldn’t read the book before the role and others go the other way.
CS: I couldn’t help it. I remember being on the third one, and the fourth wasn’t going to come out for another week or so. I could not possibly read just one page a day. I would go through a hundred pages a day. So I would force myself to just do one page a day, because I had to have my daily dose, but I didn’t want to finish because I didn’t want to have to wait.
Q: Have you met the Twilight series’ author Stephanie Meyer?
CS: Yeah, she comes to the set a lot. She’s really hands on. She’s really cool. I got a chance to meet her kids and talk to her about the movie and how she came up with it. She’s really nice.
Q: Did you ever discussed your character with her?
CS: Yeah. She gave me solid little tips and stuff and told us little tidbits about our characters. I think that a lot of what she told us is now in the public and so everyone really knows the inside stuff.
Q: Who is your favorite Twilightcharacter?
CS: It would probably be Edward. Edward and Alice. He’s like the perfect guy ever and [she] is pretty, sassy and cool. She’s got a lot of great one-liners.
Q: Have you seen other vampire movies?
CS: Yeah, I’ve seen other vampire things, but not necessarily for research.
Q: Did you see Daybreakers, where the blood supply is disappearing and all the vampires are going to die because they’re losing their food supply?
CS: That sounds cool. I definitely want to go watch some of the other vampire flicks. I guess I have to go see that.
Q: What do you think of all these vampire TV shows like True Blood and Vampire Diaries?
CS: I think it’s cool. A vampire phenomenon. I have not watched any of them. I really want to get into True Blood because that’s the one that everyone talks about.
Q: Do you have any dream projects you’d like to do?
CS: Sure. I’m very open to anything. I’d love to play someone who’s insane or something, just so I can go flake out. I like a superhero. I know that’s ironic. That’s where we are, but seriously, it’d be really cool to play a superhero.
Q: Are you an anime fan?
CS: Not really. I’m not a really big comic book person. I know the typical ones — Spider-Man and Wonder Woman and Storm and that stuff. But don’t quiz me, because I’m not good at things like that.
Q: Are you a fan of any specific characters?
CS: I guess if anything, it would be [I Love] Lucy. I do have a lot of Lucy stuff.
Q: What about being in a Lucy biopic?
CS: That would be so cool. I know every single episode. The newer stuff would be Friends. I’ve seen every episode one too many times. I watch them for like the fifth time, each episode, and I still think they’re funny.
Q: You seem to have your share of one-liners. Do you have a comic side to you?
CS: Yeah. That’s how I started.
Q: When you think about your next project, do you want to look for a comedy, coming off of Twilight?
CS: I really like comedy. I’m into doing comedy. It’d be fun. [And] I would definitely like to do something a little more dramatic.
Q: Do you also sing?
CS: I do. I took a break from that when I got Twilight because it took up a big chunk of time. I’m going to get back at that, though.
Q: What are your influences?
CS: I listen to the Mars Volta and Fiona Apple every day. I feel if you do write music, you write what you listen to and you couldn’t possibly write in another genre. So those are the two that I usually use.
Q: Have you thought of bridging the two interests and doing musicals?
CS: That would be really cool. It would have to be a really bomb musical.
Q: A vampire musical?
CS: A vampire musical. That would be really cool. I’d be down for something like that. It would have to be something really creepy, like Repo The Genetic Opera. I feel if it’s going to be a musical, it has to be really edgy.
Q: Can you imagine a Twilight musical?
CS: Imagine Robert [Pattinson] singing as Edward Cullen? That would be cool.
Q: The emotions in the film would [work] for breaking out into song.
CS: I feel that, too. It’s actually funnier when you really think about it.
Q: Who else do you admire?
CS: I love Sandra Bullock. I think she’s really cute. Chelsea Handler, although she’s more of a comedian, but I still really love her. Ian McGregor–love him. Parker Posey. So many.
Q: Do you have actors you admire that you want to work? I can see you doing something on the order of Parker Posey, who does all kinds of interesting roles.
CS: Right, and that’s why I love her. There’s nothing ordinary about the things that she picks. I think that you have to have guts to do some of things that she’s done.
Q: What would be the one person, the one choice that you think would be most unlikely?
CS: Probably Parker Posey. She’s probably number one on my list, but I think that’s the most unusual because of the things she chooses.
Q: Are there directors that you want to work with?
CS: Gus Van Sant would be really awesome. I like Gus Van Sant. I like Steven Soderberg. The guy that did Pan’s Labyrinth — Guillermo del Toro. And Steven Spielberg, naturally, just because he’s Steven Spielberg.
But there’s a whole list of people. I wanted to work with Catherine Hardwicke before I got to work with Catherine Hardwicke [director of the first Twilight]. So I got to check that off my list and that was really cool.
Q: Would you work with her again?
CS: Oh God, yeah. I love Catherine.
Q: Who do you get excited about meeting in the business?
CS: The J’s from America’s Next Top Model. I saw them at this US Weekly party and they were fabulous. I couldn’t even go up to them. I just wanted to watch them, how they work, so that I can imitate it. They’re so cool. Love that show,
Q: Do you get recognized a lot for Twilight or even for Ned’s Declassified School Survival Guide?
CS: It’s usually when I’m in a Twilight-oriented environment. I do a lot of the Twi-Cons and I get recognized a lot. But I don’t wear my glasses on a daily basis. Those are the ones that I wore in the film. So it’s pretty easy. I just take off my glasses.
Q: You haven’t had to suffer too much from the press, right?
CS: Not too bad. There have been a couple of incidents. You think that you can ease into it. Not with this project. It’s going to be hardcore.
Q: Do you keep the fans in mind while making the film?
CS: Absolutely. When we first started working on it, we all did our research. We went online and saw what the fans had to say because this is definitely a fan movie. We love the fans.
Q: Has there been something that a fan did that made you nervous?
CS: There was one guy in Vancouver. I don’t even think he was fan. I didn’t get close enough to ask. He sat outside our place. We had a Starbucks across the street, so we’d go over there every day. He would follow me.
My friend came into town and I told her about it. We were having fun with it and trying to get away from him. We went behind the Starbucks into the alley, to go home because it connected. So we were strolling along, cracking up because we lost him. All of a sudden, he comes up the alley.
Q: Do you think about not taking parts that give you a high profile?
CS: You’re definitely right, yeah.
Q: You were on Hannah Montana?
CS: I was on one episode and in one scene. Alexa — that was the character’s name. I was having a party and I wanted to invite everyone, and that was it.
Q: Was it a big adjustment living in Vancouver?
CS: No, I love traveling. I love going to other places. It may be hard when I get there, like it was in Germany. I don’t care. I like seeing a new place.
Sometimes we’re only there for a millisecond and all you get to see is things on a taxi ride to the airport. I still think it’s cool. You walk away with souvenirs, like different currencies and stuff. That’s fun.
Q: What’s the furthest you’ve traveled so far?
CS: Germany. It’s so cool. They have amazing architecture. That place is beautiful.
Q: Do you get jet lag traveling all over the world?
CS: I don’t anymore. I think I’ve gotten use to forcing myself to fall asleep at a certain time because I have to wake up early.
There are definitely days where I feel too tired and I feel my body can’t take it and I feel like I’m going to pass out. Other days I’m just stoked.
You have to wake up around 4:00 in the morning because we have 4:00 A.M. pick-ups. So sometimes we’re like, “No, we’re not getting up.” That’s why it’s really cool to have everyone living next door to you in this big house. They just bang on your door. I don’t know how many times we’ve woken up each other banging on the door, half asleep, saying, “Get up.”
Q: How much time do you have in between to do other projects and what opportunities has this opened up for you?
CS: It’s opened up a lot of doors. There are a lot of opportunities that get shot our way, which is great. But they’ve been doing these so quickly that no one really has time to do anything else. When they do, it’s very planned out and very coordinated. So there’s really no time for random things.
Q: You started out pretty much as a kid. How does it feel maturing through this whole process? Do you take it less serious because you see it for what it is?
CS: I don’t think I take it less seriously…
Q: Will you do more risky roles, ones with more sexuality or nudity in them?
CS: I don’t know about that. But I don’t mind risqué or edgy. Nudity? I feel it’s super-important when it comes to some projects, and I feel it’s completely ridiculous and stupid when it comes to other. So it would definitely depend.