The Verge: Lynn Collins


Ever seen a striking new actor and wondered, "Who's that?" Now you'll know before you even have to ask. Welcome to The Verge, Movieline's weekly interview with up-and-comers on the verge of a serious career boost.

As Hugh Jackman's love interest Kayla Silver Fox in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Lynn Collins is the lone ingenue amidst a cast of veterans (well, and, but the Texas native has been building up memorable parts long before her big blockbuster moment. In the last few years, Collins earned major plaudits as Portia in the Al Pacino-toplined The Merchant of Venice, and she lit up the first season of Alan Ball's True Blood before her character was cruelly snuffed out. Collins spoke to Movieline and gave us the dish on her Wolverine co-stars, her thoughts on the film's internet leak, and the one show that she geeks out for even more than Ball's vampire drama.

Hugh Jackman: How often would he sing on set? C'mon, now. Confess.

[laughs] Did he break out into song? You know, when we would have a good take, I think everyone would have their own little "moments." Hugh is one of our finest movie stars, he's a triple threat, and he's an amazing, loving husband to his wife and father to his children. It's just a pleasure to be around him, to see him as a mentor and someone to look up to.

This isn't the first time you've worked with Liev Schreiber -- and last time, it was under some very different circumstances.

My very first job altogether, I played Ophelia opposite his Hamlet at the Public Theatre. I guess the cat's out of the bag! Yeah, we worked together before, and it was really great to work with him again. We've grown in so many ways and we've got this big brother/little sister relationship that was really comforting to have on the set.

And just a few years before that Hamlet, you had played Ophelia in high school. You were quite the Ophelia girl!

I was quite the Ophelia girl! That stage seems to have passed, thank God, because it's an awfully hard part to play. But yeah, my first role ever in my high school drama department was Ophelia.

It must have been a trip to go from performing that role in high school to doing it opposite Liev Schreiber in New York.

Exactly. But, you know, that high school production was pretty good!

Oh, I wasn't implying otherwise.

They're really competitive at drama in Texas.

Drama and football, right?

Drama and football and hair!

Some of the online fanboys are distressed because your version of Silver Fox has different powers than the one in the comic.

I can't talk too much about it because there are a lot of twists that go into my character's arc, but yeah, we realize how important everyone's powers are to the fanboys. You know, I feel like in theater, you get that experience where the live audience is giving you something that's propelling your energy, and it's a very beautiful relationship. In film, you don't necessarily get that feedback from the audience as much, except that with a film like this that has such a large fanbase, there really is that collective experience. I'm happy to be a part of that energy.

Have you seen all the ads where Wolverine is cradling your lifeless body? Are you ever like, "Uh, spoiler alert!"

[laughs] In the shooting process, we shot so many versions, and I haven't even seen it yet. It's a surprise to me what my character's journey is going to be, too. There's going to be a lot of twists and turns.

What's your take on the online leak?

You know, I kind of assumed that something like this would happen. It happens so much with these big blockbuster movies, that somebody finds some sort of copy of it. Personally, I think it's horrible what piracy does, and this is an example that reinforces how detrimental it is to our community of artists. But at the same time, so many people want to see this movie that I don't think it's going to make that much of a difference, if it makes a difference at all.

Kayla Silver Fox is Native American, and you have some of that in your heritage, don't you?

Both of my parents are part Native American, and this part came along and it was such a good opportunity for me to play a Native American. I've never done it. She's an Inuit American and I really researched that tribe and how they lived, which was so meager and yet so wonderful, because they were at one with the earth. So I just incorporated that sort of sensuality that comes from spirituality into Kayla. And, of course, they gave me great clothes. [laughs]

Your husband, Steven Strait, starred as the loincloth-clad hero in 10,000 B.C. Did he give you any big-budget action movie tips?

[laughs, pauses] Wow. He gives all sorts of tips. [Laughs] No, he's very proud.

Your IMDb profile says you greatly enjoy astrology. Do tell.

I've studied astrology for many, many years, and I feel like it's an incredibly challenging art. Personally, I go both ways with it, and one way is that I think it's an incredible way to get in touch with yourself. At the same time, I don't believe that by knowing someone's sign you're going to define them in a couple of sentences, nor does predictive astrology necessarily ring true to me. But the intuitive art and metaphysical studies and the big questions that we don't have the answers for...I prefer to play with that.

When you say "predictive astrology," do you mean horoscopes?

Yeah, horoscopes, but also tarot readers, psychics, things like that. I have such a skeptical streak, but at the same time I'm so interested in that side of life.

Finally, I'd be remiss if I didn't ask you how it was to work on True Blood, where you played the now-deceased waitress Dawn.

Oh, True Blood was awesome. Anything I could do to facilitate Alan Ball's creation, I was willing to do.

Are you excited for Season Two?

Actually? I'm kind of obsessed with Lost.

Don't get me started on Lost, Lynn.

That's my crazy go-to show. I still haven't seen the last one though, so we can't talk about it. Don't spoil it for me! ♦