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Liv Tyler: ĎI should have tongued Kate Hudsoní

by Scott Tenorman, metro.co.uk, June 2008


Liv Tylerís first acting job was in a rock video for Aerosmith, her father Steven Tylerís band. Her big Hollywood break was in Bernardo Bertolucciís 1996 film, Stealing Beauty. Liv, 30, is most famous for her role as elf Arwen in The Lord Of The Rings trilogy and can be seen as Betty Ross in the new Incredible Hulk film, written by and starring Edward Norton as the Hulk.

Isn't it a bit odd there's another Incredible Hulk film just five years after Ang Lee made his version with Eric Bana?

Well, it was a surprise when this project came along. My agent called me late one night saying: 'Will you get on a plane in the morning and go to LA for a meeting on The Hulk?' I was, like: 'What do you mean? Didn't they make that already?'

Your character Betty is a scientist. Do you make a convincing one?

I was so paranoid about that the whole time. I've been working as an actress and a model since I was 14 and so my education in the world was wonderful but I graduated from high school and didn't go to college. And Edward Norton is so intelligent it's ridiculous. He likes to improvise so he'd just start riffing with me and I'd say: 'I'm not really a scientist, I can't do this with you. Please write something for me!'

Were you a Hulk fan as a child?

I remember being obsessed with the TV show. It was on a lot and I can remember sitting at this little wooden table on the floor with a little black-and-white TV with dials. I have a distinct memory of that.

Did you lend your voice to the tie-in video game?

I did. It was so weird and bizarre. They send you into a studio to say these lines that are super-camp versions of what you say in the movie. There was a moment when I completely surrendered to the silliness and then it became fun. With these kinds of movies, all these other things come with it, so you can't get embarrassed about them.

Who was your favourite superhero when you were young?

I've always liked Catwoman for some reason. Eartha Kitt and Michelle Pfeiffer looked great playing her. I related to the nerdy person she was at home ‚?? that was so me. Then there was this other part of her personality that showed her sexuality and power.

What makes you do a film?

It's more of a feeling than a strategy. I just listen to my gut. I don't want to just be in a movie because it makes a lot of money. I haven't had to do that. I'm making money doing what I really like to do.

Do you still get nervous on your first day?

I get just as nervous now as I did starting out. That's natural in any job, though, especially when you're being scrutinised and everybody has their opinion on what you're doing. Movie-making for me is about the experience I have doing it rather than what happens when it comes out.

When playing a lesbian in Robert Altman's film Doctor T And The Women, what was it like having to snog your friend Kate Hudson?

We were always so shy about the kissing but in retrospect we were like: 'We so should have just totally made out and tongued each other.' But we never did, we were just too scared to do it.

Has your dad ever given you any fashion advice?

No. But I give him a lot. Sometimes he needs it. He called me when he was going to win a Best Rock Fashion award and asked: 'What should I wear?' I said: 'Something chic, like a simple black suit.' And he did. He looked gorgeous.

What makes you happy?

Just being at home with my son. I can't stand being away much. It makes me feel so uprooted.

How do you deal with being famous?

I don't live a life where I'm always taken care of and being driven around in cars. I know some actors who do that. They're a lot more famous than I am, maybe they need that kind of protection. When I'm not working I love to get in my car, drive up to my country house, go for walks in the woods, cook dinner and hang out with my friends.

Given your genes did you ever think you might become a singer?

I loved to sing ever since I was a little girl. I always thought I'd be a singer. Now it's more of a private love. I just love music, more than I love film I think because that's what I grew up on. I think musicians are the most expressive and amazing artists.

Do you feel like you've changed?

Motherhood changes you in every single way and gave me a feeling of confidence and strength I think. I may be a little bit braver and stronger than I used to be.