Safe Haven - Julianne Hough interview
Compiled by Jack Foley
JULIANNE Hough follows Footloose and Rock of Ages with Safe Haven. The 24-yearold star is also known for her relationship with American Idol host Ryan Seacrest.
Hough says “hi” as she enters the room, wearing a very low cut salmon coloured DVF jumpsuit with a scalloped neckline with the back partially open. She wears a thin silver belt and silver high heel sandals. Her hair is shorter than shoulder length, platinum blonde and parted on the side. She seems very engaged, smiling and looking very sweet and genuine.
Q: This is your first romantic thriller, and a movie without singing and dancing. Was this a more personal movie for you than your previous ones?
Julianne Hough: Yeah, I left the singing and dancing outside. I was just lucky and blessed that I got this opportunity. For me it was getting an acting coach and getting more training. Lasse [Hallstrom] is such an actor’s director and I trusted him. It was definitely a lot more heartfelt and personal, definitely.
Q: How was it to play a victim of domestic violence?
Julianne Hough: It’s definitely important to get it right, for someone who has gone through that if it feels real or not. I went to talk to women’s shelters, I met people who had these experiences. But at the same time I was in such a safe environment to do that. David [Lyons] is one of my closest friends now, and he created a formidable situation that I didn’t feel exposed. It was interesting and hard but it was also comforting.
Q: What does a guy have to do to get your attention and keep it?
Julianne Hough: Wow. Honestly, to let me be myself and support me and vice versa. Is that a good answer? To be hot.
Q: Katie is on a journey to get her power back. Do you share anything with her?
Julianne Hough: Yeah, I think we are both fighters. I think it’s very easy to, people say it’s easy to walk away but sometimes it’s not easy to walk away from situations. But with this it was a long journey setting herself free. Obviously she had the love of Alex and the security there knowing that these two people were together, but I really liked the fact that Katie was the one who ended the situation between her and Kevin. Because she didn’t need saving from him. She did it on her own and she became that strong fighter, but with having Alex there just gave her more assurance.
Q: What did you learn?
Julianne Hough: The same thing that you have to be able to be on your own and secure and confident of who you are to move forward. It always helps having great friends and family around, but at the end of the day it has to come from you.
Q: Where do you feel the most comfortable and safe?
Julianne Hough: With my dogs, cuddling with my dogs even if they are the mascots of every film that I do. They are always there, excite and humour me, they love me.
Q: How many dogs do you have?
Julianne Hough: Two, they are Cavalier King Charles’ Spaniels. Lasse had two as well.
Q: How was that cabin that you had in the movie, and shooting in Southport, North Carolina?
Julianne Hough: I was going to be all Method and stay there one night, but then I was: “Wow, it’s tick infested, I don’t need Lyme disease.” But it was amazing, it’s not often that you get to shoot on a location where the story is set. It’s gorgeous, I love Southport, it’s enchanted. If was going there on a vacation, it would be just as wonderful. But the fact that we got to hang out with some of those local residents there was amazing, the restaurants were amazing, the vibe; going to the beach on the weekends when you had a day off. Everything about it was amazing, it was honestly one of the best experiences in my life by far because it was so calm. I think there’s something about the south that you have more hours in a day and you get to enjoy each moment and not rush to the next.
Q: Can you talk about the chemistry between you?
Julianne Hough: I wanted this so bad, but had to do the first audition with Josh [Duhamel] through Skype, so I begged Lasse to let me audition again. This was the greatest opportunity for me to grow and extend, but when we went for the second time for the audition it was even better. The more you hang out with somebody and the more you know somebody, the chemistry either works or doesn’t and it just kept working the more we were together on set and whatever, and he’s not bad to look at either.
Q: How were the violent scenes to shoot?
Julianne Hough: My first day of shooting was with Dave and when all that went down and then the house, it was like: “Hi, how are you?” And then boom [pretends to hit her face with her fist]. So we got really close and we became really good friends.
Q: Did you have a stunt woman?
Julianne Hough: We had a stunt woman, but these guys can tell you that there was no way that I was going to let them do that. That’s fun to me. It’s like dancing, it’s choreography. I love that active feeling. I did get hurt a little bit but I didn’t tell anybody [laughs].
Q. Have you ever had problems with fans?
Julianne Hough: To be honest, I’m very grateful for everything and so when I meet people I love to actually sit and talk to them and I definitely don’t try and stay away from them, you know, but at the same time when I don’t have make-up on and my hair’s in a ponytail I look like any other, you know, I look about 12 without make-up on so I look like any other 12-year-old!
Q. How do you blow off steam?
Julianne Hough: Honestly, I have two dogs and any time I feel stressed or anything they just lick my face off, so we make out for five minutes…! No, they definitely calm me down and I’ve got a bazillion family members so I talk to them, but I do, I’m like an adrenaline junkie so I love extreme sports and skydiving and wakeboarding and snowboarding and all that stuff.
Q. What’s the most dangerous thing you’ve ever done?
Julianne Hough: I mean I would say skydiving and shark diving. Shark diving’s pretty intense. It was pretty scary! Yeah, but it was fun – I have a video of it and everything. It’s crazy.
Q. Where did you do that?
Julianne Hough: I was in Hawaii, it was fine.
Q. In a cage, or…?
Julianne Hough: It was a cage but we also went out and did it as well, so…
Q. Did you rebel when you were growing up?
Julianne Hough: Well I mean when I was rebelling I thought I was like super-cool and super-rebellious and the things I was doing were just awful, but now I’m looking back I was actually a pretty good girl! I was not that bad. The things I thought were rebelling were like PG. I grew up in a very Mormon-cultured world, so dating before I was 16 was bad. Kissing was bad. Yeah, so I mean… and wearing shorts that were not four fingers above the knee: that was bad! So yeah, I guess with clothing and just flirting, that was how I would rebel.
Q. With that culture, how can you decide to be an actress?
Julianne Hough: Well when I was 10 I moved to London, without my family…
Q. 10?! Wow!
Julianne Hough: Yeah, 10 to 15, with my brother who is three years older than me and we lived with our dance coaches. We were training and doing all that and when I went to his performing arts school, I really loved the acting and I wanted to act and sing and not just dance because my whole life was dancing in London and so I decided to move back and pursue that, and I absolutely love it, so it was good for me to get out of the bubble of Utah and everything, see what else was out there, and then I moved back to Utah and I found the things that I wanted to rebel against when I was younger weren’t so much now because I’d already seen it and it wasn’t such a big deal to me.
Q. What leading man would you like to work with?
Julianne Hough: Oh goodness, there’s so many. I’m a huge fan of Ryan Gosling and I think that, like right now, he’s super hot because he’s got all these movies coming out but in the past, he’s so selective in what he’s done, and he’s really made a statement, meaning like he does good things, he does good projects – he’s not just getting a payday. He’s a real actor and so, now he’s in all these fun movies but it would be great to work with him. I think he’s fantastic.
What about your music career?
Julianne Hough: It’s still there but it’s kind of on the back end for now. I have an album but we’re just waiting for the right time to come out with it and I think that, with anything in life, with anybody, when you have a moment to work out something else you should keep going because it can go like that and I feel like I’ve got a moment right now with the acting and films and so I’m going to keep rolling with that, and when the right time comes and it’s the right time for the music, it’ll happen.
Q. How do you see yourself in 10 years from now?
Julianne Hough: So 10 years, I think it changes every year that I live, like I think when I was 15 I wanted to be married when I was 25, and now I’m like no! I don’t want kids until I’m later on in life and I wanted kids when I was 26, 27… not yet! But I don’t know. I think just continuing, bettering my craft as an actress, trying different things. New challenges, more dramas, and comedies and action movies… I mean I want to try everything and then you know, just hopefully have a charity that I’m really passionate about that I can involve with and really make aware of.
Q. What diet do you follow to stay in shape?
Julianne Hough: When I’m working, it’s like high protein and veggies and not a lot of sugar; I am such a sugar fanatic, so I try to stay away from the sugar because if I have one thing, then it’s ooh, I’m done, but when I’m not working I definitely let myself have some fun and I haven’t been working for about a week and you can see it already!
Q. Do you tend to gain weight?
Julianne Hough: I do, yeah, and especially I never did but when I stopped dancing every day, my body changed because I’m getting older. Although my whole body will always be curvy, even if I’m smaller, but I’ll always have curves. That’s the way my body is.
Q. Do you have time for extra workouts when you’re filming?
Julianne Hough: It’s tough, and you know when you’re doing – for instance, on Rock of Ages which we were just doing – we were doing 17, 18 hours a day and that was regular, and the longest for us would be 22 hours a day. We were literally like… it was hard, so most days I would be like, “I can’t work out today,” but some days I would make myself do it because I knew I would feel better afterwards, yep.
Q. Do you try to immerse yourself in your character?
Julianne Hough: I do, I really love it. I dyed my hair brown for Footloose and put the freckles on. It completely made me feel like I was Ariel; there was no ounce of Julianne in there. Then, yeah, for Rock of Ages it was the same thing. I had the flipped hair and the curly over the side hair. I mean it definitely makes you feel like you’re a different person.