AE: Are you ever pigeonholed as the blonde bombshell — as someone who should play a certain type of role?
KL: I’ve worked very hard not to be viewed that way because I think it could have been a very easy route to go down, but it’s one I definitely didn’t want. I don’t want to turn 40 and be put out to pasture. I want to have a long career, and in doing so you have to hone your craft and grow as an actress and take your work seriously. And I do. I love what I do. It’s the number one passion in my life, and has been — I’ve been doing this for 17 years professionally.
Of course you have to do all different types of work, and you have to play up the sex because sex sells. Everybody wants to see sex; I want to see sex. So you’ve got to give a certain level of that too, but you have to find the right balance.
AE: Speaking of which, the movie you recently completed, which is now called Darfur [formerly Janjaweed], seems to be the type of project you get most excited about.
KL: Yeah, Darfur was a labor of love and passion, and it was made out of a real need for awareness to be raised, especially in America. It’s just staggering to think that so many people don’t know where or even what Darfur is. They don’t know it’s a region in Sudan where mass genocide is taking place; they don’t know anything about the conflict.
Kristanna Loken in Darfur
Photo credit: Graham Abbot
So this was a very important film that we made to educate people about the conflict, and it’s all based on true events. It’s in the vein of Hotel Rwanda — difficult to watch, but it absolutely should be seen. It will be at film festivals next year, and you can watch the trailer now on the official website.
AE: And what else do you have coming up?
KL: I have two films I’ll be doing early in the new year. One is a very cool script — one of the best scripts I’ve ever read — called Tribes of October. It’s done all in CGI like Sin City, in a parallel universe, and it’s with James Caan and Robert Duvall.
The other one I’m going to be doing is the sequel of BloodRayne, which is more along the lines of the original video game. I’m going to be hunting Nazis, so there’ll be more blood. I think the lesbian community will definitely be interested in watching that one.
AE: I want to end by asking if there’s anything you’d like to say to the AfterEllen.com community.
KL: I’d like to thank people for their support in my career, and their interest in sexuality because I think it’s a very important topic. AfterEllen.com is, I think, a great springboard for people who are interested in reading about the truth.
And I should say I have to thank my sister who is outspoken and has really helped me; she’s 16 years older than me so it’s like having another mother.
AE: I’m sure she’ll appreciate hearing that.
KL: Well, she knows. She was like the alternative mother; I had two. (laughs) She is very active in the LGBT community, and has always taught me that you love the person you choose. She just wants me to be happy, she supports me regardless of who I’m with, and she encourages me to talk about it — to be open about who I am.