"Alita comes from a place whre she's a weapon"

SFX - - Alita: battle angel - Rosa Salazar is Alita

What can you say about Alita’s jour­ney?

Alita comes from a place where she’s a weapon, she’s a war ma­chine. She was trained – you don’t have feel­ings, you don’t have fam­ily, you don’t even have a ma­te­rial body any­more. But then she meets Christoph’s char­ac­ter; to be able to have that re­la­tion­ship with some­one, to be able to have a fa­ther, is some­thing com­pletely new to her. It’s re­ally beau­ti­ful.

What train­ing did you do?

I trained for five months with a man named Keith Hirabayashi who ac­tu­ally plays Sub Zero in Mor­tal Kom­bat. He is an amaz­ing per­son, an amaz­ing sen­sei. He trained Zoe Sal­dana for Avatar. He is bril­liant; and what we did was some Muay Thai, some kick­box­ing, some Ea­gle Claw, which is Kung Fu, and staff work… re­ally ton­ing the body with a well-rounded ar­ray of mar­tial arts. Ba­si­cally, it’s a mind-body-and-soul ex­pe­ri­ence.

How did you cope with the mo-cap suit?

I re­ally liked it. I took to it rather quickly. I’m a very phys­i­cal per­son. I did gym­nas­tics, dance, mar­tial arts and swim­ming… I re­ally like phys­i­cal stuff. So get­ting into the suit felt like sec­ond na­ture to me. It felt like a gym­nas­tics uni­form.

What did you think when you saw your­self as Alita?

I was shocked. I kept re­peat­ing: “That’s me!”… I didn’t know what to ex­pect. When I saw how much of me they put into her, I was pleas­antly shocked. And it was more than I could’ve ever imag­ined or dreamed of. It’s never been done.

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