By Karen Posada
Nadine Velazquez is definitely a rising star in Hollywood. This Puerto Rican beauty already has a solid TV career with her roles in ‘My Name is Earl’, ‘Hart of Dixie’ and ‘The League’ and now she’s slowly making her way into the big screen after some previous attempts a while ago. Last year her role in Denzel Washington’s ‘Flight’ got everyone’s attention as she is nude in the first scene for a long time and has a lingering role throughout the film. I had the chance to talk to her back when that film opened and now I had the luck to talk to her once more for her movie ‘Snitch’ starring Dwayne Johnson and Susan Sarandon; opening this Friday February 22nd.
In the film Velazquez plays the role of Analisa, John Matthews’ (Dwayne Johnson) second wife; their lives gets disrupted when his son from his first marriage is wrongfully thrown into prison. As a parent John Matthews is willing to do anything for his son and agrees to go undercover in order to set him free.
I spoke to this talented actress about her role in ‘Snitch‘, her hopes for the future and her next project loaded with Latinos titled ‘Aztec Warrior’.
ShowBizCafe.com (SBC): What was it like for you when you found out you were going to be part of ‘Snitch’ with Dwayne Johnson and Susan Sarandon?
Nadine Velazquez (NV): It was fantastic! It was two weeks after I’ve done the one with Denzel, so I was on cloud 29. I knew [it was mine] when I walked into the audition, I was like “sorry girls”. Sometimes that happens, sometimes I know, sometimes I’m very clear about what my intentions are, specially if I connect with the character and then I just know how to be in the role, how to interact…in this case I was so clear and I was like [I got this].
SBC: What’s your take on your relationship with Dwayne Johnson’s character in ‘Snitch’?
NV: Actually there was a lot more that they had to cut because of time; the movie was getting too long. We had beautiful intimate scenes at the beginning, where he came from one of his undercover [jobs] and he got beat up really bad and I noticed. We had such a tender moment between us. That was cut, and I was so disappointed. There were other stuff at the beginning as well, they were just trying to establish the relationship being that he has a family that he loves and cares for and he’s putting everybody in jeopardy, because he has a estranged relationship with his son and the first wife doesn’t get what the second wife’s about. There’s that whole conflict and what happens is that no matter what he loves his kids and his going to put himself on the line for either one of them. I’m going talk to the director and the producer to see if they would include [what they cut] in the DVD.
SBC: Has anything changed for you since ‘Flight’ came out? Have you maybe received more calls or fan recognition?
NV: They gave me a call from an independent movie and they are making an offer, they want me to star in it, they really want me in the film. That’s different. I also feel like the appointments I’m getting are also very different, I’m no longer the “My Name is Earl girl”; I’ve been getting things that are a little more layered, which I like.
SBC: Is the lead in a movie something you feel ready for? Are you leaning towards one genre more than another?
NV: I can handle it! [To me the genre] doesn’t matter; just as long as it’s a good character that [I connect with]. I really really want to work with Quentin Tarantino. I would love for him to see my work and flip out over it. This is my fantasy: he would flip out over it and be like, “I want you to play an anorexic in my next movie”; and then I would have to loose weight for it and be embarrassed about how skinny I am and I would do it for the art.
SBC: Do you have any other fantasies, maybe doing theater?
NV: If I did theater it would be because I wrote the piece and I’m performing it. I’m writing my one-person show, so I probably wouldn’t do any theater until I’m finished with that. It’s comedic because of my parents, because of how they act, they are funny, but is not intended to be just funny; it’s pretty much my life story. My parents are like a traveling circus act the two of them, they are two peas in a pod, they are inseparable.
SBC: That sounds great! Ok, You want to work with Tarantino, any Latino actors or directors you also want to work with?
NV: There are not a lot of us. I would love to do something, when I get to her level, which would be interesting something with Eva Mendes maybe like a female colleague type movie, that would be really cool because you don’t often see that. As far as the guys go… Javier Bardem of course that would be amazing. Also, Michael Peña, which I actually maybe up for a TV show he might star in. I was up for ‘End of Watch’ but Natalie Martinez got it over me, so I got to read with him and do screen tests with him, so I met him there. I don’t know of that many Latino directors, maybe Robert Rodriguez.
SBC: Let’s talk about your next movie, ‘Aztec Warrior’, what should we expect?
NV: ‘Aztec Warrior’ is coming out this fall, that is going to be significant as well because it’s my first comedy lead and I’m carrying the movie as a female lead, so I’ve never done that before. Luis Guzman is in it and Eugenio Derbez who has a huge following in Mexico and Latin America. [My character’s] father ran a mechanic, body shop and he dies and I run it with my mom and brother. Luis is a retired super-hero and he’s over weight and he’s lost his mojo. After so many years this fighter comes and tries to inspire him and tell him the world needs him, but he has no desire and isn’t interested. For whatever reason he comes into my auto shop and he sees me, inspiration happens. So my character for him is what helps him, him falling in love makes him want to become what he used to be. I think after all is said and done this year is going to be very different for me than the last two years.
I certainly couldn’t agree more; I’m anxiously waiting to see in what other interesting projects I’ll see this brilliant Latina in next.