Excerpts from a Roundtable Interview with Marisa
Co-Star of ďThe
Dallas , Texas ,
November 20, 2008
Outlook: You had to
walk such a tightrope in this film. You were playing a
part, you allowed him to see a little bit of the real you, you were so
vulnerable, and yet so tough, as well. Did you enjoy the
complexity of the role, and how did you go back and forth like that?
MT: Well, Darren (Aronofsky, the
Director) and I talked about it a lot. We talked about
ďWhere is she in her head?Ē But I think mostly itís
an amalgamation of emotion coming out. I donít think
that itís very clearly drawn. I donít think itís
human nature to really know yourself that well. I think
all her mantras, of ďIím a Mom, Iím not just a stripper,Ē itís her
trying to convince herself. And also, she wears a lot of
masks for her work, so that makes it even harder, as he starts to touch her
heart, and it awakens so much fear, and itís kind of pushing her off her
track, because sheís just on this one track, and sheís protected.
And sheís going to change her life. I donít
think she knows how she did it. I wasnít really that
conscious of it. I think itís just written in the
Outlook: Did the
other girls say anything to you, about, ďThis really represents us,Ē or
ďIt doesnít really represent usĒ?
MT: Well, I donít
think any of the girls have seen it yet, so I havenít really talked to
them about it. But I really like in that first scene,
where Iím talking with him, and Iím chatting with him, and then I ask
him for my money. And thatís just the normal course of
it. That just shows, mostly, how quickly her mind will
change. (snaps fingers) Like that.
Outlook: What was
it like, working with Darren? How did he instruct you, or
try to guide you?
MT: Well, we
went line-by-line through the script, through my scenes. And
we talked about everything. I told him kind of what I had in mind.
I donít really like to over-articulate. I just
like to show up and do it, which actually matched really well with Mickey (Rourke),
because he doesnít like to rehearse, and he certainly doesnít like to
talk about it. And Darrenís OK with that. We
just showed up and trusted. It was an intimate
relationship---he hung around us a lot---which is great, because itís
always great when someoneís right there, and when something comes to mind,
you can talk about it easily. Itís not like, ďLet me
go and have this big conversation, let me go and find the Director, and
heís probably working with other departments, and I donít want to bother
himĒ----he was always around. And it just made it a
very easy, communicative, set.
accessibility was really important.
MT: Yeah, the
accessibility. Thank you for making me sound more
Beforehand, I went to a lot of clubs
on my own, just to soak up the atmosphere. I thought
about this character, and sort of made up this place in my head where I
could go find her, but Darren doesnít know any of that. It
was working for him when I got there.
worried you about doing the club scenes? And after you
did them, did those worries prove to be unfounded and you had other problems
you didnít anticipate?
MT: Oh, Iím the
kind of person thatís like, ďI canít, I canít, I canít---------OK,
Iím ready, get out of my way.Ē (laughs) So
at first it was like, ďIím scared, Iím scared,Ē and then it was like
ďCan I do it again?Ē (laughs) So my only frustration
was that I learned all these really good tricks on the pole, and he never
even filmed them all! (laughs) So when they were done,
that was the only regret. The hard part for Mickey was
when we were singing at the bar. He was cute once he did
it, but he just did not want to sing. We all had to sing
with him in order for him to do it!
Outlook: Thanks for your time.
MT: It was very
nice to meet you.
Dr. Ronald P. Salfen, Pastor, Grace
Presbyterian Church, Greenville