We only had 9 minutes with Zoe Saldana because she was right in the middle of filming. She literally ran off set, in full makeup and wardrobe, to chat with us and then pulled her away almost mid-sentence. But she was incredibly sweet and just wanted to sit and chat with us for hours.
And, man, she’s so inspiring, we would have eaten it up. We’re so grateful for those few minutes! It didn’t take her long to make an impact on each of us. Without further ado, here is my Zoe Saldana interview as Gamora.
Zoe Saldana Interview as Gamora
What’s it like to be back?
Zoe: “It feels good. It feels really, really good. It’s like coming back to a family of people that you already broke the ice, you feel super safe being yourself and trying new things. You’re working with a director that is super supportive. It’s still like a dude’s movie where he’s like inviting women to come and kick dudes’ asses. So, yeah, I signed up. [LOL] And, it’s great. I’m doing more stunts too, which I’m loving.”
It seems like you and Chris have a great relationship, the way you were chatting in there while you were waiting…
Zoe: “Yes. We’re parents of wonderful little kid boys and we’re constantly bouncing back ideas. He shares with me how Anna is handling being part of a family that’s like a traveling troop and she has to stay and work and everything. So, I also share that experience with my husband and I have to make these ultimate sacrifices because, you know, one of us has to travel with work and the other one is like ‘okay, I’m working remotely with you;’ because at the end of the day it’s to not be apart. So there’s a constant conversation and then we also compare what kind of fitness things we’re doing lately to what we ate. We’re hungry all the time… and sometimes we just talk about what’s a good bottle of wine we’d like to have. We never run out of things to talk about.”
You take on a variety of different movies, what is your favorite type? Is it the emotional biography? The Sci-Fi?
Zoe: “I like sci-fi and I like spaces that are under-served. I think that for females, we need more examples, and much more diverse examples of professions and callings; and it’s not just everything so internal and dramatic. I think that women need to be a little more physical. It’s better for our health. It helps our sanity too. We are the ones that are constantly–because it’s public–hormonal. Men don’t talk about their hormonal swings right? Let me set that straight.
But we do, and it helps us a great deal and I know I was a little girl starving to have more female heroes. I held on to the very few that were out there and then I just had to become one because that’s what we do for our little girls.”
As a working mom, do you have any tips or tricks for finding balance with work and travel and everything?
Zoe: “Talk. Talk about everything. No assumptions. No reserved feelings. Just last night–and I love sharing this–Mike goes like, ‘Okay, I understand we’re super busy, let’s practice still connecting, conversations. I don’t care what we’re talking about. If you’re in the bathroom while I’m in the shower, let’s talk freaking five things. Let’s just share five things. It could be five anything.’ And I love that. You just have to constantly keep it open.
And not just because you’re so tired, like getting lazy with the most important work in your life–which is your home. That’s one tip that I would love to share. We’re doing it guys. Everything we hear of couples that look super happy and–I don’t care if they got married yesterday–Mike and I are superstitious. Even when we look at homes to buy, because we are still renting our home, and we’re like, ‘what do we do?’ And Mike is always like, ‘can I ask you, [to the people selling the home], why they sell? Are they divorced? [If so,] no, no, no, no, no…’ We’re very about energy. We’re goofy that way.”
Since we’re all moms here, can you talk a little about your fitness routine? Because DAYUM, you look phenomenal.
Zoe: “Thank you. Yes. It’s not easy. It requires determination and a lot of discipline. I did not want to hate myself and I did not want to start fantasizing of what I used to be. I wanted to work with what I have. I gained 65 pounds. I’m not comparing myself to anybody, but if my experience can be inspirational… I’m a killer.
I don’t just approach like, oh I’m going to start like Sunday… I’m going to start Monday because Sunday, you know, we’re having the barbecue. I’m like no f$%^ing way. No. F$%^ing. Way. Because to me, it’s scarier to look at myself while I’m brushing my teeth and have 10 things to say about myself that I hate. I don’t want to live like that. We’re gifts. We’re f$%^ing unique. We’re special. We’ve got to work. We work for everybody else every single day. You work for yourself. Be self-focused.
I love that. I don’t compromise. Even when people–you know, I’m Latina. We eat. Like everything is in the kitchen. Like, we’re happy–make yourself a sandwich. You’re sick? Get yourself a bucket of ice cream–we’re Latinas–make rice and beans. But you kind of go, I need the energy. I have twin boys, for the love of God, what am I, crazy? When these kids start running, what am I going to do? Feel tired? NO.
Okay, can’t do this. Can’t do that. Oh, we’re having a get together? I’ll have dinner at four. That way I’m not bitter at the party, like hungry… I’m happy. I’m here. I’m full. You know? So, just little things like that and Michael was super helpful. It helps a lot when you have a partner that is super supportive and understanding of the ups and downs and is compassionate, empathetic about the fact that you just went through a life changing transformation.
That, and it’s like you’re in the future and you’re going back to the past and you can’t get back to the future. You’re f*cked. Do you know what I’m saying? And to have somebody that’s kind of going, ‘yeah, but what do you want to do now that we’re here?’ It helps. So, find fountains of support. It’s very important.
I guess I can talk about this–I am gluten free as well. We’re having a lot of problems with our hormones ladies, our thyroids, where it’s what we eat. It’s about cleaning the gut. It’s about fixing hormone levels, getting blood panels once a year after we become mothers, because we’re having adverse, like lethal reactions to gluten more and more. Our children are also, you know, being born with Celiac, and things like that. I don’t know if there is a correlation, but I read everything. I have Hashimoto’s–an under active thyroid. I’m on medication for the rest of my life. I want to be ahead of it. I don’t want to victimize myself. So, that is something I’m very conscious of. We’re 80% gluten free, so to me, it’s also about, if I eat better, in that one moment where I get to sort of cut loose, I did it, and you realize you don’t go to the extremes. I could talk about this everyday. And you know why we all have to talk about it? Because we all fall off the wagon, we always do. I mean, every 15 days women, hello? So you need other people around you that are like, ‘no, you said you’re not going to do that.’ And you go, ‘Thank you. I’m back.’ Support system.”
Sadly, they pulled her back on set so we didn’t have time to get a photo with her. But in under 10 minutes, she inspired all of us. She has fantastic energy and her relationship with her husband gives me hope that true love is out there!
See Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 in theaters everywhere May 5th!