Face of the fu­ture

Why Aussie new­comer and The Out­post star Jes­sica Green could be our next Mar­got Robbie

The Sunday Telegraph (Sydney) - TV Guide - - Front Page - writes Michele Manelis

IT’S the end of a day’s shoot­ing in Provo, Utah, and Aussie new­comer Jes­sica Green takes a seat in a makeshift sa­loon to re­flect on how she came to be here.

Still dressed in her me­dieval­style cos­tume for her role as the “kick-ass” avenger, Talon, “who doesn’t take crap from any­one,” in new Syfy fan­tasy se­ries The

Out­post, the Tas­ma­nian-born, now Gold Coast-based for­mer model is gen­uinely wide- eyed with won­der at her lat­est big ca­reer break.

“I’m on a roller­coaster ride,” she tells TV Guide. “I’m just so excited.”

The 25-year- old beat out a host of Hol­ly­wood as­pi­rants for the much- cov­eted role, in part be­cause of the mar­tial arts skills she honed on the now de­funct Chan­nel 10 teen drama Light­ning Point.

De­fy­ing the ‘just a pretty face’ adage, the one-time Miss Uni­verse Aus­tralia con­tes­tant has been adding to her re­sumé with solid ap­pear­ances in the 2016 Aussie in­die hor­ror film Red Bil­l­abong (star­ring Dan Ewing and Tim Pocock); last year’s Net­flix do­cuseries Ro­man Em­pire: Reign

of Blood ( play­ing Cleopa­tra); and, most re­cently, in US com­edy hor­ror Ash Vs Evil Dead.

Al­ready draw­ing in­ter­na­tional com­par­isons to Os­car-nom­i­nee Mar­got Robbie – who made

the leap from Neigh­bours to big- screen glory in The Wolf of

Wall Street, Sui­cide Squad and I, Tonya – Green is hum­bled by her op­por­tu­ni­ties, and giv­ing it her all to make the most of it.

“I trained for a year-and-ahalf prac­tis­ing MMA [mixed mar­tial arts] back home be­fore I au­di­tioned for the role,” she says.

“I have al­ways been a bit of a boy. I grew up play­ing rugby with my brothers. I’ve al­ways wanted to do a re­ally phys­i­cal role and fight and re­ally get amongst it all and it’s been re­ally fun learn­ing all the sword techniques. That’s prob­a­bly one of my favourite bits of play­ing Talon.”

Set in a me­dieval Earth-like world, hu­mans are gov­erned by a theoc­racy called the Prime Order, which com­mits geno­cide on the ‘ Black Bloods’ – a mostly hu­man species, save for the colour of their blood and their pointy ears.

Green’s Talon, a lone sur­vivor of this race, dis­cov­ers she is en­dowed with su­per­nat­u­ral abil­i­ties and vows to avenge those who have slaugh­tered her fam­ily.

“I love Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones, and The Out­post

cov­ers both the ac­tion and sci-fi gen­res. I’ve been able to in­cor­po­rate some of the train­ing I’ve done, so I can fight and kick ass, and be one of the boys,” she says. “It’s great to be play­ing such a strong fe­male lead who won’t back down to a man, has a cause and is go­ing for it.” Mir­ror­ing her own de­ter­mi­na­tion to suc­ceed, she says her char­ac­ter “won’t let any­thing get in her way. I think it’s im­por­tant to show the younger gen­er­a­tion that women are pow­er­ful.” De­spite her ob­vi­ous phys­i­cal prow­ess, she ad­mits she doesn’t fancy her chances of de­fend­ing her­self for real, laugh­ing: “Well, I couldn’t full- on fight [in real life] but I do love the train­ing,” she says. Her as­sault on Hol­ly­wood has come with the sup­port of her fam­ily and an LA posse of Aussies all giv­ing showbiz a go.

“I’ve been com­ing to Los Angeles for the past four years of pi­lot sea­son,” she says.

“The Aussie com­mu­nity is such an amaz­ing and sup­port­ive group. We are here chas­ing the dream and mak­ing it hap­pen. There’s a Face­book page called ‘Aussies in LA’, where ev­ery­one posts about gath­er­ings. So you meet other Aussies do­ing sim­i­lar things. We up­lift each other. No one tries to bring you down.”

Her Light­ning Point co- stars started to­gether back in 2012 and are in each oth­ers’ cor­ners still.

“Philippa Coulthard did the BBC se­ries Howards End, and Lucy Fry [ Vampire Academy] who was the star of Bright with Will Smith … the three of us started to­gether on Light­ning

Point and we be­came best friends. Lucy got Vampire

Academy in the first few months of com­ing to LA, [while] Pip and I have been in the trenches go­ing at it for a while.”

En­cour­aged to pack her bags and make Hol­ly­wood her per­ma­nent home, Green ad­mits she’s hes­i­tant.

“Ev­ery­one’s told me, ‘ You have to move to LA.’ I think I will but it’s go­ing to be tough, be­cause I love be­ing home.”

THE OUT­POST

7.30PM, THURS­DAY, FOXTEL’S SYFY CHAN­NEL

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