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MOORE, JULIANNE:THE LOST WORLD

LOST AND FOUND

Perhaps the snow-laden milieu of the Sundance Film Festival is an unlikely place to meet actress Julianne Moore, who was at the Festival promoting a small independent film, The Myth of Fingerprints, beacuse these days Moore is being chased by a variety of dinosaurs in Steven Spielberg's epic Jurassic Park sequel, The Lost World. Paul Fischer spoke with her for this interview.

"Spielberg actually saw me in The Fugitive some years ago," she says. "I had a tiny role in it, but for some reason it prompted him to call me, saying that he hoped to work with me one day. I was obviously thrilled and never believed for a second it would actually happen. I then got a phone call last year asking me to come in and talk about The Lost World. We had this amazing conversation about our families and ourselves. Then he offered me the movie. I was blown away."

In The Lost World, Moore plays a palaeontologist who travels to an isolated island where a variety of dinosaurs have been allowed to roam free following the disastrous Jurassic Park experiment of a few years previously. Trying to knock some sense into her is her mathematician boyfriend (Jeff Goldblum), a survivor of the original experiment.
"She's a feisty, gutsy, independent woman who knows her mind and won't take crap from anybody."

"It was just non-stop physicality."

Before working on The Lost World, Moore was asked whether or not she was a physically agile woman. "Of course I am, I said, but I never realised what Spielberg meant." It was a tough film to make, and though she had a stand-in, Moore did a lot of her own stunts. "There was so much hanging everywhere. We hung off everything available, plus we climbed, ran, jumped off things. It was always cold and raining, so we were always wet. It was just non-stop physicality."

As for working with those dinosaurs, that, she said, was the easy part. "Firstly, Stan Winston built these incredibly beautiful animatronics which were so lifelike, primitive, emotive and with such personality, that all you have to do is look at them and act accordingly. Secondly, when they were doing scenes involving the computer graphics stuff, someone like Steven would explain carefully where they would be, this is where they're coming and how many. So you were guided; therefore it wasn't difficult, given the circumstances, to be able to fill in the rest."

Moore landed her first leading role in Todd Haynes' "Safe" (both 1995), garnering critical acclaim as an affluent LA housewife, who develops allergic reactions to everyday chemicals and fragrances. Later that year, she co-starred as Hugh Grant's pregnant girlfriend in "Nine Months" and was the electronics surveillance expert who was targeted for death by Sylvester Stallone and Antonio Banderas in Richard Donner's "Assassins". Moore also plays one of the women in the life of artist Pablo Picasso (Anthony Hopkins) in James Ivory's "Surviving Picasso" (1996).

"He wasn't my boyfriend when we met, but things became complicated as the relationship developed."

Moore's next two films return her to the character-based films that have cemented her reputation as a serious and methodical actress. First up was first-time writer/director Bart Freundlich's star-studded, film Myth of Fingerprints, about the simultaneous unravelling and restructuring of a seemingly all-American family during a Thanksgiving reunion. The movie was an unexpected Sundance surprise and a big hit with audiences. For Moore, this beautifully intricate film was not only a great challenge for her as an actress, but on the film, she met her new boyfriend, the film's writer/director. "He wasn't my boyfriend when we met, but things became complicated as the relationship developed."

Then there's the controversial Boogie Nights, in which she plays a porn star in a film about the birth of Hollywood's adult film industry. "The woman I play is a very sad person. She's in the adult film world in the eighties. She has drug problems and has lost a son, so she could be an amalgam of many people who fell into the business." The film is set to be controversial due its sexually graphic material and the possibility of America's infamous NC-17 rating. "I like to try different things", she says.

Myth of Fingerprints and Boogie Nights will be released later this year.

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"She's a feisty, gutsy, independent woman who knows her mind and won't take crap from anybody." Julianne Moore







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