Earlier today, at the TCA Winter Press Tour, Collider got the opportunity to sit down with actress Katee Sackhoff for an exclusive interview. While she was there to promote her new A&E western crime drama Longmire, which debuts this summer, we did also get the chance to ask her about the role she recently signed on to play in the upcoming Riddick sequel with Vin Diesel, that is being directed by David Twohy.
Sackhoff talked about having grown up watching science fiction and action, what a huge fan she is of the first two movies, how excited she is “to go blow some shit up,” her crazy (and I mean crazy!) audition story, and how she’s already packed on nine pounds of muscle in training, in an attempt to compete with her co-star. Check out what she had to say after the jump.
KATEE SACKHOFF: The draw there is selfish. I grew up watching science fiction and action movies. I love it. I absolutely love it! I’m a huge fan of Vin [Diesel]. I’m a huge fan of the first two movies. I don’t even know how much I can say. They’re so buried in secrecy, over there at the David Twohy camp. But, selfishly, it’s what makes me tick. It’s what I enjoy doing. It’s fun. I’ve been all over the map with my films, in the last year, and the next three or four that I have planned, so I’m excited to go blow some shit up.
Was that a role that was offered to you, or did you have to audition for it?
SACKHOFF: I did audition for it. It’s actually a crazy story. I went in once, and then didn’t hear anything. When I went in for the first time, I just met with David. And then, the next time, they were like, “Okay, it’s down to you and four girls.” I was like, “All right.” And they were like, “Vin’s in town, so you’re gonna have to jump. When they say jump, you’ve gotta jump.” I was like, “Okay,” thinking that it could be 5 pm one night, or 8 pm one night. I got a phone call at 11 o’clock at night, from all the producers and the casting director, which thank god the casting director is a woman because I would have been like, “You want me to come where?”
So, at midnight, I got out of bed, I took off my face mask and I drove to Vin’s house with my mother on the phone going, “If I don’t call you in an hour, this is the address I’m at.” And she was like, “Katee, nothing is going to happen.” I was like, “I know, but this is so weird!” And, I got the job because I showed up. I truly believe that. When I was driving home that night, at 2 o’clock in the morning, I called my mom and said, “I do believe I just got that job because I showed up.” As far as acting goes, you get to a certain point where I think everyone can do the job and it comes down to a level of commitment. I think sometimes all you have to do is show up.
When you know you’re going to be working with someone like Vin Diesel, do you work extra hard to be ready to kick some ass?
SACKHOFF: It’s funny, the last movie I did, I got severely hurt on. I hurt both my shoulders and my back, so much so that I couldn’t move for three months. When I say couldn’t move, that’s being over-dramatic, but I could do nothing but walk. I couldn’t push off with my shoulders because my shoulders were bad. It was very weird, and it hurt like hell. I went and had ozone injections into my spine, and all this crazy stuff done, because I was so worried I wasn’t going to be able to get physically ready for this movie.
And then, I just started working out a month ago, and I’ve packed on nine pounds of muscle, which I hate. It’s like Starbuck (from Battlestar Galactica), all over again. It’s not where my body sits. My body sits in the 130′s, and then, when I start playing these characters, I pop up to the 140′s, and I’m like, “God, my pants don’t fit anymore!” I was putting on my pants this morning and I’m like, “They’re the same size and they fit, but my ass looks weird now.” It’s very different. But, that is intimidating. I do know Vin, and I do know how professional he is, and I do know how much of a work-horse he is. He’s so committed to making a phenomenal project. To show up less than perfect for he and David would be a million dollar mistake.