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Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows - Noomi Rapace interview

Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows

Interview by Rob Carnevale

NOOMI Rapace talks about some of the challenges of making Sherlock Holmes: A Game of Shadows, working with Robert Downey Jr and Jude Law and completing her first blockbuster and English language film.

Q. You must have received many script offers after The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy – why did you choose this as your first English language film?
Noomi Rapace: I always had a very strong thing with gypsies, and when this came to me… Actually I met Robert and his wife Susan [Downey, producer] in LA. It was a very quick, intense, fun meeting, and we didn’t really talk about Sherlock. I came out of the meeting smiling, thinking, ‘Oh my God, I really want to work with those people’. So it was very personal. I met the people from Warner Bros. and it was a very good meeting, then I met Robert and Susan, then I met Guy in London, and it started from a very honest…a discussion about movies and dreams and how we want to work. It felt like I was invited into an amazing opportunity to work with people I’d been admiring for years. It was much more about the people in it, and then also to have the opportunity to play a gypsy.

Q. What was it like stepping onto such a big Hollywood production?
Noomi Rapace: It was amazing to see and discover how you worked, as I stepped into this big American movie. The way Guy and you two worked was so playful and easy, and I forgot I was nervous. It felt almost like a small indie production, as it was team work and it was so intimate.

Q. Were there any accidents during the action scenes, and what would you say was the hardest scene to film?
Noomi Rapace: We got bruises and stuff. What was amazing is that those two guys actually do their own stunts. They do almost everything. It was amazing. You really fight good! I had a corset – they didn’t have that – when we were running through the woods.

Q. This is a more physical film than the first – was it exhausting to combine the script with the physical aspects?
Noomi Rapace: I’ve done fight scenes, and I like it. This one it felt like… I stopped training, because I wanted to become more feminine – I didn’t want to look like I’d just come from the gym.

Q. How difficult was it to move from Swedish films?
Noomi Rapace: I think the biggest step for me was to step into the English language, because I didn’t speak English two and half, three years ago. So, I was afraid I was going to be caught up in a prison of having to translate everything from Swedish into English, and not be able to improvise and ad lib and live in the language. It’s thanks to those boys – the way they worked and the way they embraced me, and the way Warners took care of me. It felt like everyone just grabbed me and pulled me in, and I forgot I was nervous. It felt like I became one of the boys. I forgot it was not my language.

Read our review

Read our interview with Robert Downey Jr