Play­ing with SEALS

It is one great ex­pe­ri­ence for rose­lyn Sanchez whose char­ac­ter in actofvalor goes through hell.

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - MOVIES - By JOSEPH V. AMODIO

ACT Of Valor, a new film about the lives and sac­ri­fices of Navy SEALS, was orig­i­nally to star all ac­tors. But co-di­rec­tors Mike “Mouse” Mccoy and Scott Waugh soon re­alised if they wanted to ac­cu­rately por­tray this elite spe­cial force and be true to who these sol­diers are, they’d need the real deal – real SEALS.

They’d been hang­ing out with the troops for months, re­search­ing that world. So they asked. Ev­ery SEAL said no. Af­ter much con­vinc­ing, nine fi­nally agreed to ap­pear in the film, along­side a hand­ful of ac­tors cast in NON-SEAL roles, like With­out A Trace star Rose­lyn Sanchez, who plays a CIA agent.

Valor is the first of its kind – a fic­tional fea­ture film, star­ring ac­tive­duty mil­i­tary per­son­nel, de­pict­ing ac­tual tac­tics and as­sets (in­clud­ing a real nu­clear sub­ma­rine), us­ing live ammo (stan­dard pro­ce­dure for SEALS, but not done in film since the 1920s) and vet­ted by the US Navy.

The gov­ern­ment and film­mak­ers have taken pains not to re­veal the SEALS’ iden­ti­ties, or tac­tics or tech­nol­ogy that could threaten na­tional se­cu­rity.

Sanchez, who lives in Los An­ge­les and re­cently gave birth to a baby girl, Sa­bella, chat­ted by phone: What did you think when you first heard about a film ... star­ring real Navy SEALS?

It sounded ... weird. I was like, ‘Whad­dya mean – I’m not gonna do a movie with­out ac­tors.’ But once I read the script and met the di­rec­tors, I thought it was fan­tas­tic. The SEALS may be out­side their com­fort zone ... but I guess they’ve seen a lot worse.

Ex­actly. In the film, I get beaten up, and have to wear all these pros­thet­ics on my face. I was ex­tremely un­com­fort­able. I had a bit of a sit­u­a­tion one day – it was hot, my face was melt­ing, it was tak­ing for­ever and I was in a bad mood.

They saw me ... act­ing up a bit. ( She laughs.) They were look­ing at me, go­ing, ‘What are you com­plain­ing about?’ I felt bad. I was like, ‘Ohhh, I’m an ac­tress, guys, sorry.’ ( She laughs again.) I’d be called at five in the morn­ing, and at eight at night I’d still have that stuff all over my face. In Mis­sis­sippi, where we shot. In the sum­mer.

I de­cided to just use my bad mood. Be­cause my char­ac­ter goes through hell. Did you get a sense of what these guys are like?

They’re nor­mal. But se­ri­ously, I have in­cred­i­ble re­spect for them. They know they can die at any mo­ment. They risk their lives ev­ery day, and don’t tell their fam­i­lies about mis­sions. It’s an in­cred­ibl- world. Some of them came from Afghanistan – shot the movie – and went back. You think kids may watch the ac­tion se­quences and just get off on the adrenalin?

It could hap­pen. But I think the idea is for kids to see this movie and go: ‘I would love to be a Navy SEAL.’

They save lives. Hope­fully, there’ll be some­thing pos­i­tive and kids won’t just con­cen­trate on all the toys.

So what about that live ammo fly­ing over­head? Were you freaked out?

Can I tell you some­thing? I didn’t know it was live ammo. No?

No! Maybe they told me and I didn’t pay at­ten­tion. I don’t re­mem­ber. I heard about it af­ter­ward and I was like, ‘Whaaaa?’ I’m glad I didn’t know.’ I guess it’ll be a let­down to go back to work on ... a reg­u­lar show.

I took some time off for the baby. I just wanted to en­joy the preg­nancy and this time. We’re blessed. I’m so lucky.

Now it’s pi­lot sea­son. So, I’m look­ing for­ward to see what’s next. But as of now ... I’m mum. ( She laughs.) And that’s good. What hap­pens if Sa­bella grows up and wants to be a Navy SEAL? Y’know, in these days, women can ...

Oh, no. ( She laughs again.) I’d rather she be a fig­ure skater. — News­day/ Mc­clatchy-tri­bune In­for­ma­tion Ser­vices n Act Of Valor is play­ing in cine­mas now.

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