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15 January 2011 @ 01:18 pm

Source: Collider

We sat down with Carla Gugino to talk about her new movie, Every Day, a story about a family's struggle to survive life's curve-balls that ultimately bring out the best and worst in us and make us closer.

Ned (Liev Schreiber) is a television writer on a seedy drama whose life is turned upside down when his wife's (Helen Hunt) estranged father (Brian Dennehy) moves in with their family. Carla plays his sexy, free-spirited co-worker who lives in the moment and doesn't think too much about the consequences. She's a playful character who introduces some unexpected excitement into Ned's life while nearly upending it in the process.

Carla talked to us about what attracted her to the project, what she liked best about her character, and also talked about her upcoming films like Zack Snyder's Sucker Punch, I Melt with You, Mr. Popper's Penguins. In addition, she shared her thoughts on next season's Entourage and the Sundance Film Festival. Hit the jump for what she had to say.

Can you talk about how you got involved with this film and what attracted you to the project?

CARLA GUGINO: It was a very typical way in which I got involved in the sense that the script was sent to me. I got a beautiful note from the director which is not typical, which is always very appreciated, and I just opened up the script and started reading it and really loved the story and really loved what it had to say in regards to just the struggles of being an adult and a human being and also loved that this character was such a fun part of the story and such a playful element of it. That, to me, was just very appealing to play.

What was it about your character that really resonated with you and did you draw inspiration from anyone that you know?

GUGINO: I think that the free-spirited nature of the character really resonated with me – both because I have an aspect of that and also because I think I'm always trying to live in the moment and not think too much about consequences. But, I do think about consequences much more than Robin does. So I think it was also fun to live vicariously through her. There wasn't a particular person in this case. I think I was just really influenced by that kind of freedom of the late 60s, early 70s, as a mentality. There's always an underbelly to that. There's always another side to that which is usually there to kind of protect oneself from dealing with pain or attachment or all the other things that are very human elements. But, yeah, there wasn't a particular person.

How was it working with Richard Levine and what was the directing process like?

GUGINO: It was great. He knew the script so well because obviously he had written it and he had such a sense of the way in which he wanted to tell the story. I felt like I was in very good hands considering that it was his first time that he was directing a film. And I find with most great directors, either with lots of experience or not much experience, when they are collaborative with their actors, while simultaneously having a very strong sense of the story they want to tell, it's a sign that they're probably going to be a very good director. Because generally it's the not great ones that are insecure that are very defensive and try to hold onto things. So, in this way, he definitely had a strong sense of what he wanted but he was very open to our input and it felt very much like a true collaborative process.

Can you talk about playing opposite Liev Schreiber and what that was like? Did you have an opportunity to rehearse together and did you discuss any of your scenes beforehand?

GUGINO: We did. We spoke on the phone a couple of times before because we were both in different places and then we just rehearsed maybe for a day or so with Richard, Liev and I. It was a pretty useful process in that way. We both just were in sync on what was important for this character to convey and also what their relationship was and also to make sure since there's not a lot of screen time with them that we were able to make it feel very real and tangible and that it would be something that would be genuinely alluring to his character. Oh wow, what if I could shed all of my responsibilities and live in this fantasy world to some extent? And the fact that she is certainly encouraging of that.

Is it easier to do a film like this where you're playing a supporting role as a sexy co-worker than when you're the star?

GUGINO: I really love them both. There is definitely a wonderful and different kind of responsibility and a real playfulness that can come with being able to be a character that just pops in and shakes things up and leaves. And so that was one of the things that really appealed to me about this as well. Obviously, Helen and Brian, and that side of the story is so much heavier and there is something so beautiful and complex and wonderful about getting to play that. I've certainly played a lot of those kind of parts that carry the weight or the moral compass of a piece. So it was really fun for me to come in and not being holding the moral compass at all and just get to play a naughty character.

You've shown a distinct aversion to typecasting in the roles you've chosen so far in your career. Can you talk about that? Is that a deliberate choice? What do you look for in a role?

GUGINO: I think it's a deliberate choice more for myself than from a career standpoint. But it's something that I've been very aware of from very early on, which is I'm not really interested in playing myself or being a brand or personality in that way. Definitely what excites me and is the reason that I've been acting so long and hope to act for the rest of my life is that I love playing different characters and mixing it up. Initially, I think for a while people were confused by the variety of characters and I think now, over time, it's being regarded more as a body of work which I'm really appreciative of. Again, I think the scariest thing to me is to think that somebody would only associate me with one character and that that's all that I would get to play. That sounds like actor hell for me. (laughs) So I think it's intentional too that I have really just wanted to mix it up for myself and for people to see that I can do a multitude of things.

Have you seen a rough cut of Sucker Punch and what are your thoughts on it?

GUGINO: I have not, but I've seen big chunks of the movie and I think it's going to be pretty amazing and visually astounding. There are some incredible characters in this movie and I don't think it'll be like any movie anybody has seen. I'm really excited about it.

What was Zack Snyder like to work with again?

GUGINO: Great. I mean, he was so great to work with the first time around and you know the second time around you just have such a shorthand. There's this innate trust that we both have with each other that I think just makes it [so much easier]. You get to jump off the cliff creatively that much quicker. We got to bring this character to life. The script was like a blueprint for who this character, Madame Gorski, is. And then, we were able to find a multitude of levels beyond that. She was so much fun to play. Also, he and Debbie Snyder have a really great instinct for casting really good people, not only good actors but really good people. So, for both Watchmen and Sucker Punch, the cast have become like my family.

Can you talk about your character in Mr. Popper's Penguins? Who do you play and what's it about?

GUGINO: Mr. Popper's Penguins is based on a children's book. It's an updated version of it. It's with Jim Carrey and Angela Lansbury. Basically, it's a movie about a family. Jim Carrey plays a man who has become an incredibly ambitious businessman and weaves these grand tales because his father was an adventurer, but his father left him as a young kid to go on these adventures. He was married but now is separated from my character and we have two children together. Ultimately, upon his father's passing, he is given a bunch of penguins and they really end up warming his heart and bringing the family back together. I think it will be a really fun, funny, beautiful movie.

Did you go after the project or did it come after you?

GUGINO: It came after me which was so lovely. They asked me to do this part and I'd had a year where I'd done quite a bit of dark material and the idea of going and doing something — I mean, you can't not be happy around penguins. You're unfortunately happy and cold but the happiness makes up for the coldness.

What about I Melt with You?

GUGINO: I Melt with You is a very dark little movie. It's really interesting and hypnotic and gorgeous. I just saw a cut of it. It takes place in Big Sur in a very small town on the cliffs. I play a local Big Sur cop who comes upon these four guys who have come up there for a weekend away with the boys, but things start to get much darker than you'd expect and my character ends up embroiled a little bit deeper than she anticipated.

Will you be back for Entourage?

GUGINO: (laughs) I don't know. Amanda does have a way of rearing her head. We shall see.

Are you looking forward to Sundance?

GUGINO: I am looking forward to Sundance if I can go. I hope I can get myself up there. But yes, I'm very excited for them.

Exclusive: Carla Gugino on Every Day

Source: Comingsoon

As the next few months are prepped to illustrate, Carla Gugino is one of the most versatile actresses working today, jumping from medium to medium and crossing genres to an incredible degree. In 2009, she played 30 and 60-year-old versions of Sally Jupiter in Zack Snyder's Watchmen (and is prepped to work with the director again in the upcoming Sucker Punch), but is just as comfortable on the small screen, where she just debuted this past weekend as new a new character on the Showtime series "Californication".

In Every Day, Gugino plays in the world of indie drama alongside a cast that includes Liev Schrieber, Helen Hunt, Eddie Izzard and Brian Dennehy. The film stars Schreiber as Ned, a less-than-satisfied family man entering into a midlife crisis. Gugino plays Robin, an attractive co-worker with whom he begins an affair, causing Ned to reexamine what he wants from life.

Though she poses as liberally minded and sexually liberated, the character of Robin has an additional depth that thrilled Gugino and which she discussed with ComingSoon.net, alongside updates on her future projects, including the just-wrapped Mr. Popper's Penguins. She also discusses her lack of appearance in Spy Kids 4, rumors of a Sin City 2 and the potential for a role in Snyder's next film, the Superman reboot.

CS: How long ago did "Every Day" come your way and what made you want to get involved?

Gugino: Well, my agent gave me the script and I got a beautiful letter from Richard Levine about why he wanted me to play this character. I just opened up the script and thought, "Wow. It's so refreshing just to read a movie about people and the struggles that people have and kind of the universal questions we have about what it is to be an adult and how to deal with that." I also love that his woman, Robin, was just such a fun, free-spirited, wild woman. We get a little glimpse, not really the whole way, just a glimpse into the complexity of who she is. She apparently seems to be one thing and I think a part of that is true, but it's also masking her desire to not be her.

Q: You have a pretty impressive ability to go from bigger-than-life blockbusters to smaller films like this and still deliver an actual character. Do you have an preference on the size of the production you're doing?

Gugino: No, I really do love being able to do both, actually. And I think that doing one makes me appreciate the other as well. I just finished this movie with Jim Carrey called "Mr. Popper's Penguins" in New York. That's a big movie and it's a big family studio movie and we had such a great time, but I think that I also love the idea of getting my hands dirty and getting in there and having to do something really fast and flying by the seat of your pants. There's a real energy that comes from that as well. Also, often it's rare in a big movie when you get a great character to play. I've actually been really fortunate because, like in "Watchmen," Sally Jupiter is a fantastic character. There are other examples as well of big movies where I've gotten to play great characters. But oftentimes, the really beautiful, nuanced characters come from smaller films.

CS: Is it a very different experience being onset and not having those special effects?

Gugino: It's not that big of difference and I guess that's why I like to do film and television and theater. I really like to learn new things and stretch myself in that way so I always look at those things as being yet another skill to acquire. When you're working on green screen and everything's in your imagination that can be very challenging, but it can also be very liberating because you can imagine whatever you want to imagine.

CS: You do cross between mediums a lot. Richard Levine was, before this, primarily a television director. Is there a clear difference being on set for a TV show versus being on one for a film?

Gugino: No, this felt like making an independent film in that way. Interestingly enough, though, on some of those shows--the really good shows--it is like making a little independent film every week. Especially with cable shows. But no, this really felt like a film because we were shooting at Steiner in Brooklyn and the Lower East Side in Manhattan. We were shooting on the RED, so this really felt like a movie.

CS: Your character has a backstory that we never fully find out the details of. When you're acting, do you prepare the history of your character in detail even if it's not shown onscreen?

Gugino: For sure. I mean, I kind of have my own sense. Whether it's a sense of if Richard agrees or not, I don't know. So basically yes is the answer to that question. And Robin is definitely a natural free spirit. She has probably jumped around a lot in life and take on this fly-by-night sort of attitude because it is true to her. But also probably because there was probably one time where she didn't do that and really let her guard down and thought about her dreams for the future with the wrong person and her heart was broken. And she's realized that this is an easier way for her to live her life. So part of it is genuine and part of it is protection.

CS: Tell me a little about meeting and working with the rest of the cast.

Gugino: Well Liev is such a wonderful actor and a wonderful person. That was probably the main thing that drew me to do this, getting to do this with him. Obviously Helen Hunt is phenomenal. We just didn't have anything together. Brian Dennehy and I did "Desire Under the Elms" together on Broadway. We did a play together. We also briefly crossed over in a movie called "Righteous Kill" as well, so it was really a great grouping of people. But yes. Working with Liev was great and I only wish it had been longer because we did all our stuff together basically in a week.

CS: What about Eddie Izzard?

Gugino: Amazing! Amazing. So much fun and also everything that you would imagine. And also a total charmer.

CS: Tell me a little about what's coming up. You mentioned "Mr. Popper's Penguins."

Gugino: Yes, and I also just started on "Californication" this season. It just aired this past Sunday, in fact. I play a character called Abbey Rhodes, which is just a fantastic character's name. I'm a lawyer who starts representing David Duchovny's character. But because the show is called Cali-fornication, the relationship gets a little more complicated than that. It's actually one of the best characters I've gotten to play in a long time. It's so much fun and I really enjoy working on that show. Then I have a movie called "Sucker Punch" that comes out in March. There's actually a lot of stuff coming out right now. It's very cool. And then there's a movie called "Elektra Luxx," which is a sequel to "Women in Trouble." I play a porn star called Elektra Luxx. That's on March 11th and also on March 11th is a movie called "Girl Walks Into a Bar," which we did with YouTube. It will be the first feature film ever to sort of premiere online with Rosario Dawson and Josh Harnett, Danny DeVito, Emmanuelle Chriqui and myself. A really great group of people. We shot it in 11 days, so it was really cool.

CS: Are you back for "Spy Kids 4"?

Gugino: No, I'm not, but I've been talking with Robert [Rodriguez] all through the process, so I think it's going to be really good.

CS: What about "Sin City 2"? There's always word that it's coming, but never anything solid.

Gugino: I know and, sadly, that one I don't have an official answer on, either. I hear the same things that you do. I know they've really been wanting to do it, but whether it actually happens or not, I don't know.

CS: Do you have a dream role? Something you've always wanted to play and haven't had the chance?

Gugino: God, I have so many dream roles yet to play. I'm always just looking for really strong roles with great directors and amazing actors. I guess I'd love to play a really proper femme fatale in a great film noir. "White Jazz" is a story that I've always loved and there's a really great character in there. But I also kind of feel like there's something better out there than I could even think of. There's so many characters.

CS: You work with a lot of the same directors who must love working with you.

Gugino: I do love the notion of the old sense of repertory theater or a troupe of actors that get used in filmmakers' movies. So maybe I've just drawn that to myself because I do really love the fact that I've gotten to work with the same filmmakers many times. There's a level of trust that comes with that that I think allows for really great things to happen.

CS: You talked about effects, but I'm curious if heavy makeup like in "Watchmen" helps you transform into someone else or is it liberating to not have to worry about something like that?

Gugino: I would say it's certainly liberating to not have to deal with all those things. Certainly in the case of prosthetics, you have to go in four hours earlier in the morning. That in and of itself is a challenge. Then you stay two hours after for them to peel everything off your face. That being said, in the case of Sally Jupiter, the prosthetics were an essential part of the character and really did inform how I played her. Same with acting with imaginary penguins. It's challenging. So would I rather be acting with a real person? Yes. Anytime in that movie, too, where Jim [Carrey] and I got to have a scene that was just about us, it was so refreshing. There's no doubt that getting to--and it's why I love theater, too--act with a real person and with real dialogue is great. I love that people that are really responding to that. We have a lot of really well-written movies that are getting attention right now. They actually are about people interacting with other people. It's not about machines. It's not about special effects. Those are always really close to my heart because that's what interests me the most. But I also feel really grateful to get to go do some big movie where I act with a green screen because that's what that character needs.

CS: Is there something in the case of Robin that you do to make the character click? A way of walking or a certain costume element that the audience may not immediately notice but that helps you?

Gugino: I think that I've always loved the late '60s/early '70s and that kind of mentality. I lived in a teepee when I was a kid and I lived in a van. I had a very sort of Bohemian childhood on one side and then I also traveled around Europe and was well-educated and all those things. But I love the idea that this character is a little bit of throwback. Though she was living in a modern world, that kind of sensibility and that kind of desire to be here now. That kind of Zen philosophy that was very easy to talk about but maybe not so easy to live.

CS: I'm sorry, but did you say that you lived in a teepee?

Gugino: Yes. I had a very serious kidney operation and my mom, at the time, who had come from a very conservative family, she literally took me to recover to live in Northern California with a bunch of goldminers and she literally erected a teepee and we lived in it for about four months. It was awesome. As a kid, it was literally a dream come true.

CS: Before I go, let me ask: Has Zack Snyder talked to you about appearing in "Superman"?

Gugino: No. We've talked about "Superman," which I'm so excited for him about. But at this point, I think they're dealing with their Superman and I think every other thought comes after that. But I would always love to be in any movie that Zack does. I love working with him and Debbie Snyder so much. I'm really excited for the world that we have Zack doing this incarnation of Superman.

Every Day is now in theaters in New York and LA.

Carla Gugino on Every Day, Sucker Punch and Fond Memories of ALF

Source: Movieline

Here's the thing about Carla Gugino: If you're not paying close attention to the actress in this role or that character, there's a chance that you may not even realize that it's her. The same Gugino who portrays a free-spirited, needy television writer in the new release Every Day also plays the tough-as-nails, no-nonsense Amanda Daniels on Entourage. And that's not even mentioning her following in the realm of fanboys for her roles as Sally Jupiter in Watchmen and her upcoming role as Madam Gorski in Zack Snyder's March release, Sucker Punch. Not surprisingly, the sultry star likes it that way.

In Every Day, Gugino plays Robin, a temptress of sorts teamed with her fellow TV writer Ned (Live Schreiber) on a sensational long-running medical drama. Ned, who is having marriage issues due to a number of lingering problems at home, looks to Robin as an escape — and Robin is eager to comply. Movieline spoke to Gugino about Every Day and her character's definition of "changing into something more comfortable," looking forward to Sucker Punch with what she learned from Watchmen, and if she remembers the set of ALF being as bad as what we've heard.

My favorite scene in the film is when Liev is visiting your apartment and you change into your "something more comfortable."

Carla: Right! [Laughs].

OK, I know you're jumping to conclusions, but I say that because it's the funniest scene in the film. That's a very bold definition of comfortable?

Carla: Especially because nobody, including me, is comfortable in that. Except for Robin, I guess — because as Robin, I was. As me? No.

How do you describe this character? Despite her immoral — if that's the word — actions with Ned, she's still very likable.

Carla: I think that was actually important for us to convey — actual, genuine fun. And the feeling that the reason, obviously, people have affairs or do "immoral" things is because there is a payoff to some extent. Do you know what I mean? Generally it's just not out of evilness or lack of regard for the other person. It's trying to escape something, or trying to find something, or trying to experience something. And I think that it obviously you can look at it in a very black-and-white way like "this is good" or "this is bad." But I think, also, what was important, in some ways he kind of does need to be shaken up. And he kind of does need to be loosened up a little bit. Even in order to have an honest look at his life and realize he really wants to commit to his marriage. But it was kind of fun to play a character actually who I don't think [is] one of those people who is, like, "I am going to take this man away from his marriage," or something. I think it's very much more like, "Live in the moment, let's see what happens, we will deal with the consequences later." Which, by the way, is a really refreshing kind of take on things. It's just, unfortunately, life doesn't really work that way.

I never felt your character was malicious about anything.

Carla: Exactly! No, and I appreciate that because, interestingly enough, I've been asked today several times, "How manipulative was she?" And I was like, "That's interesting. No, maybe slightly self-serving?" Or more like a kid in that she's more in the moment.

You've been on a lot of television shows. In this film you sit in a weekly drama writer's pitch meeting. How far off were the outlandish pitches in the film compared to what you've seen in real life?

Carla: Well, you know, it's funny because I know that [director] Richard [Levine] sort of exaggerated to some extent, but I don't think it's a huge amount. You know, especially when you're getting to the later seasons of shows, and you run out of all of the ideas, and you're like, "Oh my God, well, which one haven't we seen yet? How can we get them to actually talk about our show?" Or whatever.

Right. At some point a writer on Happy Days said, "Why don't we bring in a space alien named Mork so he can meet the Fonz."

Carla: Yes! Yes! Totally. Exactly, I think that the interesting thing. This story is so personal to Richard, and I think that there's no doubt that I think there was sort of a Robin figure and I know there were things that he took creative license, but I do think that what actually makes the movie work, as opposed to being just sort of a story about every day people living an every day life — why do I need to go to the movies to see that? — I think it's actually so specific and so personal that it becomes universal and very entertaining. Because you either relate on a level of pain, in certain elements of it, but also on very humorous levels of it. Like, "Oh my God, I recognize that in myself" — right down to the writer's rooms in those shows.

As we discussed, you've been involved in a lot of films and television shows. What are you most recognized for?

Carla: Well, it's interesting because I look so different in so many different things I've done. And I color my hair a lot of different colors so I usually am pretty safe in that regard. And over time it's different things, but when I was doing Spin City, that was something. And then Karen Sisco and various movies. I would say, overall, probably in the last couple of years, Entourage would probably be the thing. If I was to have to pick one thing, I would say that is the thing that people say, "Oh my God, you're the agent on Entourage!"

They never say Amanda Daniels?

Carla: No, people in Los Angeles or New York say Amanda Daniels. I mean, come on. But not in the rest of the world.

What can we look forward to with your role in Sucker Punch?

Carla: Well, it's significant. It's a role that I really love but it's a really hard one to… She's a really interesting character.

It seems there's been a trend with this type of film: It gets a certain segment of the population excited, but they haven't been doing that well at the box-office. Kick-Ass is a good example. How can Sucker Punch break that trend?

Carla: Well, I think what's cool about this is, first of all, a completely original idea. So there's something really exciting about the fact that it feels like it's from a comic book but it actually isn't. There's not really a reference point for it in a really cool way. First of all, the female aspect of it, which is that it's got all of these sorts of kick-ass and beautiful and smart women in it, is unique. And, secondly, for example, with Watchmen, that was an interesting conundrum because who knew the graphic novel loved the movie because it could not have been more [faithful] to it. But people who didn't know it were expecting Superman or Batman and then were like, "What is this movie?"
I can't even give you a good answer on what will make this one different other than it's going to be a really interesting movie and I don't think there's going to have been anything like it. And I don't think that it will even feel comparable to other comic book movies. So hopefully it will just feel like it's just a really cool movie on its own that people will want to go see. But I know what you mean. That's where my expertise stops in the marketing of things.

It's interesting what you said about Watchmen. I agree about those two segments, but there also seems to be a segment that did like the comic but also wanted the story to be updated to something more contemporary than the Cold War. Looking back now, could that have even worked?

Carla: Yeah, I think that there wasn't even sort of a question because it was so organically set in the '80s, in that time, where I think you would have been lost. "What if Nixon had a fourth term?" There were so many things that seemed — and I know that they considered it — if you were to update it, it would just sort of lose the mindset from which that came. And! I think it was also kind of… For me it was interesting, because I actually felt like, "Oh my God, not that much has changed." Yes, we may not be thinking of nuclear war in the same way, but we still have weapons of mass destruction. We still have a lot of these same issues. So I actually found it more like, "Oh, look what we are doing, it's so much of the same stuff."

I apologize in advance, and I know it was a long time ago, but I have to ask you: was being on the set of ALF as bad as I've heard?

Carla: [Laughs] I had a great time on ALF!

I sense sarcasm.

Carla: I was being sarcastic, but the truth of the matter is, and I hate to say [in an Brooklyn accent] that was so long ago, I barely rememba' [Laughs]. All I know is that I was so happy to have that job as a guest star on ALF — along with my guest starring on Webster. And it was literally one of — I can honestly say — one of my second or third jobs. And I think I would have loved anything. I don't think I would be a good person to speak about the set environment at that point. [Laughs]

I always hear those rumors, and you're the first person I've ever interviewed who had ever been on ALF.

Carla: And I feel like I'm disappointing you! I know, I've heard that, too.

Well, we can all go back to thinking it was a harmonious set.

Carla: Exactly — just think lovely things about the set of ALF. I think that would have made your life better.

Carla Gugino Talks Criticism, Every Day, and Sucker Punch

Source: FilmSchooRejects

Carla Gugino's latest film, Every Day, says a lot about the writing and creative process. The story follows a screenwriter (played by Liev Schreiber). It's one of those films where nearly everything seems to be going wrong for the lead, and a part of one of those falling pieces is working on a terrible seeming television series. The film explores ideas of being unfulfilled by the creative process, how difficult criticism is to take, and how the idea of making films for an audience in mind.

These were things I wanted to ask Carla Gugino about in our quick 8-minute phoner, as well as the upcoming (and ultra-cool looking, Sucker Punch). Gugino has a small role in Every Day so talking about the themes seemed to the best topic to explore. And for those of you who are just as excited for Sucker Punch as I am, Gugino says it'll be a little bit more emotional than you're probably expecting it to be and will definitely feature Snyder's stamp of kick-ass action.

One of the main aspects of the film is the idea of being unfulfilled by working on something that's all about commerce, and not art. Do you sympathize with Ted, in that way?

Carla: Well, I have to say, I've been really blessed that I don't relate to that too much [Laughs]. I have certainly been in circumstances where I have had jobs that I thought I didn't have the capacity… it's probably a weakness, and not a good thing, to work on something that I don't love and don't know how to be good in it. That's probably one of the reasons why I've chosen to do a lot of theater, and my pocketbook has been affected by it [Laughs]. It's a variety of things. I guess, I really sympathize with that as opposed to empathize. The few experiences that I have had [like that] I just think, "I cant do that." I think it's a very relatable thing. As we know, a lot of people end up in situations where you have to have a job to support people. Sometimes it's not at all what you'd hope it to be.

How do you work in those types of environments, where the project aren't the most ambitious?

Carla: I just sort of create my own challenge for myself, in regards to what I want to do within that, what I want to create, and what I want to for my role. If it's for something that I realized it wasn't what I hoped it would be, it's sort of thinking about what I can do in my life and at this time that will be really… since I'm clearly not being able to give that much of myself to a project, what will I do in my life after that to balance that out? I gotta use that time wisely [Laughs]. Thankfully, I haven't had that experience too often. I really feel, honestly, that I don't have a lot of those [films] in my career. I'm really grateful for that.

The film itself is really a lot about the creative process. Brian Dennehy has a line about criticism where he says it's always hard to take, no matter what. Do you see criticism as something that can be difficult?

Carla: For sure. You know, my friend and an amazing actor, Alan Rickman, was once talking about whether or not you read reviews in theater, which I don't. I just don't like to have that outer-view while in the process. It's different for film, because you can look back on it. His thing was that: the good reviews are never as good as you want them to be. And the bad reviews you never forget [Laughs]. I think there is something to be said about criticism. I actually really love criticism, if I find that it's somebody that actually cares as much about the piece that I do. I'm always open to learning new things or getting a new perspective.

There's certain critics of everything where their criticism comes from a place that makes you think, "Do you even like books? Do you even like movies? Do you even like what you're criticizing?" I can have a great, long debate about the virtues or problems of a movie, but it's always because I'm having it with people who are as passionate about movies as I am. I don't have a problem with criticism, per se. I think people who throw opinions out that are somehow in print are taken as fact. I think that can be the more hurtful thing, because if they're not given with care, then it can sometimes be an unfortunate situation.

And basically anyone with a computer and blogspot can be labeled as a critic.

Carla: Exactly. That's definitely been a shift that I realize, as well. Also, like I said, I have certainly received really helpful criticism from people that I really trust, like look at Pauline Kael. There are certain people that you'll look at and go, "That person is so smart. That's an interesting insight." Also, they were champions of filmmakers who they believed in. That's exciting and good, which the Internet can do. For me, if my mindset is coming from that place, then I will be less fearless in terms of creating. I think as soon as you jump to a place of who will like a movie or respond to it, or doing a play and figuring out what you're audience is going to do… All you can do is be true to yourself and your creative ideas, and the rest of it is kind of out your hands.

Do you make films with an audience in mind?

Carla: Sometimes there are people who make movies for other people, and sometimes people make movies for themselves. Usually, I think if you're a director, you got to be making a movie for yourself in addition to others [Laughs], because it's so hard to get a movie made.

I talked to Zack Snyder a couple of months ago, and one of the things I told him was that I loved how unrelenting Sucker Punch looks. He said how it's a little more emotional than it looks, is that the case?

Carla: Yeah, absolutely. There is no doubt that there's going to be some kick-ass action sequences in that movie, but it is incredibly emotional. I think that's also representative because the leads are women, and women are innately emotional creatures. Baby Doll, the lead character's journey is a young girl delving into a fantasy world in order to save her life and her sanity. It's cool because what Zack created is reflective of a woman's mind. A woman's mind is deeper, not deeper than a man's, but I'm saying that there is a depth and complexity and emotionality to it that I think you certainly wouldn't have if this was a movie about six guys.

It's also cool how he's not making it about, pardon my phrasing, men with tits. He's embracing their sexuality.

Carla: Yeah, absolutely. Needless to say, that's an element of the genre, but also it's the same thing I feel about women who play strong women on film: unless the character specifically calls for that, I'm much more interested in being a fully realized woman that is strong, as opposed to playing someone with the worst characteristics of a man to be strong [Laughs]. I think they don't have to be mutually exclusive. I certainly think Sucker Punch has a lot of those elements to it, and I'm sure people will respond to it in a variety of ways.

Every Day is now in limited release.