A Minute With: Zoe Saldana

Cast member Zoe Saldana poses during a photocall for the film
Zoe Saldana wants to direct.

Actress Zoe Saldana has starred in the blockbuster movies “Avatar” and “Star Trek,” so her latest, the smaller budget “Blood Ties,” was quite a shift. But she is also eyeing another new role: director.

In “Blood Ties,” which had its world premiere at the Cannes film festival this month, 34-year-old Saldana plays the girlfriend of a policeman whose complex relationship with his brother pits duty against family loyalty.

The film, by French actor-turned-director Guillaume Canet, also stars Clive Owen, Marion Cotillard, Mila Kunis and James Caan.

Saldana spoke to Reuters about the differences in appearing in small and big-budget film, why she wants to direct and maintaining control.

How did you approach a smaller budget movie?
There are sacrifices that you make. Your trailer isn’t as big or as nice. I’m joking. But my approach is always going to be the same, whether it comes in a big package or a small package. If I commit to do a role and to be part of a story it is my job and my duty to give 150 percent to putting this character together. I did the same on “Blood Ties” that I did on “Avatar” and “Star Trek.”

What were the differences?
When it comes to certain blockbuster movies, the budget is healthier so there are just perks. Not just perks but there are things that you need that you get. When you are shooting a film like “Blood Ties” when the budget is not as big and you are shooting in a city like New York, which is a very expensive city, all the budget goes into the movie and you just make compromises. You are happy to do so because you are collaborating with amazing people. It is a good day at the office. The office might be smaller but it is good.

How have your ambitions changed from five years ago?
Five years ago I didn’t have ambitions. I would just live day-to-day. It is not like I am a happy-go-lucky person. I am very determined and if I get an audition to go for a role that I really want I will give 150 percent. But I was never the man with the plan until recently, maybe two years ago. It is only because of my desire to make that transition and become a director, and that is one of the reasons why I wanted to work with Guillaume (Canet) because he is an actor, and now he has been making a very graceful and solid transition into directing.

What appeals to you about directing?
It is much more satisfying. You are more of a participant in the conception and making of a story, of a movie, as opposed to being an actor that’s hired and shows up and says your lines. Obviously you collaborate with your director and your producer but as soon as you leave you are at everybody’s mercy and that is too much of a loss of control for me, of my craft.

Have you had issues with your work being changed?
I have been working in this business for over 10 years and, especially as a woman, you are disappointed because by the time you get to see your work it has changed so much. I don’t like to be disappointed. I like having control. I think I have capability, and as a woman I can’t be at too many people’s mercy. It is not OK for me. I am a storyteller and an artist and I love what I do, so I want to be a part of it more and not just show up and say my lines.



News
Entertainment
Sports
Lifestyle
International

Dinosaurs could have survived asteroid strike

It turns out there is a good and a bad time for the planet to be hit by a meteor, and dinosaurs were just unlucky.…

National

OkCupid admits to Facebook-style experimenting on customers

By Sarah McBrideSAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - OkCupid, a top U.S. matchmaking website, intentionally mismatched users to test its technology, the IAC/InterActive Corp service said on…

Local

MTA fares still increasing 4 percent in newly…

The agency said the 4 percent increases, previously announced in December, will remain steady even as the MTA deals with increasing labor costs.

Local

De Blasio, Bratton defend city's efforts after Eric…

Mayor Bill de Blasio justified the city's response to the death of Eric Garner, a Staten Island man who died while in police custody earlier this month.

Movies

Interview: Brendan Gleeson on the way 'Calvary' depicts…

Brendan Gleeson talks about how his new film "Calvary" began over drinks and how his character here is the opposite of the lead in "The Guard."

Movies

'Get on Up' producer Mick Jagger on the…

Mick Jagger, a producer on the James Brown biopic "Get on Up," talks about the time had to tell the singer some bad news and his favorite JB record.

Television

'Glee' star Lea Michele to appear on 'Sons…

"Glee" star Lea Michele has been confirmed as a guest star in the final season of "Sons of Anarchy."

Television

TV watch list, Monday, July 28: 'The Bachelorette'…

See Andi Dorfman make her big choice on tonight's 'Bachelorette' finale.

NFL

Larry Donnell has inside track in Giants tight…

Little-known Larry Donnell of Grambling State currently has the inside track, as the second-year player has received the bulk of the first-team reps.

NFL

Computer to Jets: Start Michael Vick over Geno…

Jets general manager John Idzik says the choice of who starts between second-year quarterback Geno Smith and veteran Michael Vick will be a “Jets decision.”

MLB

Yankees looking to trade for Josh Willingham: Report

CBS Sports’ Jon Heyman reported Sunday the Yankees are interested in Twins outfielder Josh Willingham.

MLB

Joe Torre: I'm in Hall of Fame because…

Joe Torre spent 18 years putting together a near Hall of Fame career as a player. But it was the 12 years he spent as…

Travel

Glasgow: Hey, hey, the gangs aren't here

This European city has done a good job getting rid of its more violent residents and revitalizing with artists.

Education

Babson College tops list of best colleges for…

Money magazine has just released its inaugural list of "The Best Colleges for Your Money" -- and the answers have surprised many. Babson College, which…

Education

NYC teens learn how to develop apps during…

Through a program sponsored by CampInteractive, the high schoolers designed their own community-focused apps.

Tech

The Ministry of Silly Walks app is both…

Monty Python have dug into their back catalogue for cash-ins once more, but with the Ministry of Silly Walks app, they've made something that's fun too.