January 21, 2012

Kate Beckinsale's movie, Underworld Awakening (3D)

Kate Beckinsale back as Selene in "Underworld 4"

Kate Beckinsale is back as Selene in "Underworld Awakening", the fourth installment in the "Underworld" film series.

Fans of the first two "Underworld" films are sure to be thrilled by the return of actress Kate Beckinsale in the role of the fearsome Vampire huntress Selene, in Columbia Pictures' 3D action-thriller “UnderworldAwakening.” “We really wanted to work with Kate again,” says producer Gary Lucchesi. “Sometimes the stars just align themselves perfectly and this is one of those times.”

Beckinsale admits she thought twice about slipping back into the familiar skintight black latex suit before accepting the part again. “But it was a life-changing role for me, so I feel very affectionate towards it. It’s exciting to be able to follow a character over such a long period of time. It’s rare to get that chance.”

Tom Rosenberg, Lakeshore Entertainment chairman and CEO, says he’s thrilled to have Beckinsale in the film. “She is Selene, and Selene is the heart and soul of 'Underworld.'

Right from that first scene in the first film, she embodied the perfect tone.”

On set, it was clear she had lost none of the edge that made Selene an iconic figure in Underworldlore. “Kate can switch into Selene like that,” says co-director Mårlind, snapping his fingers. “She can be having a laugh, but when action’s called, she has those guns up and she looks like she’s going to kill you. She has a highway into Selene that is fantastic. As a director, it’s marvelous to have someone who is so close to their character.”

Revisiting the character and mythology that helped launch her career as a bona fide movie star was great fun for the actress. “It was exciting to do this together with the people who created the original film in a new environment with a different set of problems for Selene,” she says. “We all wanted a really fresh take and I think we’ve achieved that.”

The most unsettling change for Selene is finding that she has a daughter. “Suddenly being presented with a child who’s almost fully grown is a shock, especially when the girl’s father is gone,” says Beckinsale. “It’s quite a lot to handle. I wouldn’t say Selene is suddenly soft and maternal, but she’s protective in a new and different sort of way.”

After a centuries-long lifetime of being answerable to no one, Selene is only slowly able to embrace her daughter, says co-writer J. Michael Straczynski. “It brings out another side of her,” he notes. “In the previous movies, she was primarily focused on battling the bad guys. She was fighting against them, not fighting for someone, as she is now.”

The child opens up the character of Selene to a host of new possibilities and allows the character some emotional moments unlike anything in the previous films. “For the first time, there is a certain amount of vulnerability in Selene,” says producer Richard Wright. “She has an interplay with Eve that is very un-Selene like. Selene is very cold and nothing gets under her skin. She loves no one, she’s a killing machine—and then she has a daughter.”

Eve’s presence adds a new dimension to an already unique storyline, observes Beckinsale. “There aren’t very many female-led franchises, that work without being deliberately titillating or objectifying the lead character. I think that’s one of the great things about Selene becoming a mother, with all the attendant conflicts.”

Opening across the Philippines on Friday, Jan. 20 in IMAX 3D, Digital 3D and regular theaters, “Underworld Awakening” is distributed by Columbia Pictures, local office of Sony Pictures Releasing International.

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