Pro-fighter Gina Carano goes "Haywire" in movie debut

Wed Jan 18, 2012 4:00pm EST
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By Zorianna Kit

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Retired female mixed martial arts fighter Gina Carano may be a household name to those in the sporting world, but the 29-year old beauty is now broadening her horizons to include acting.

Carano, a pioneer in the world of female competitive fighting, makes her big screen debut in Steven Soderbergh's action thriller "Haywire," in U.S. theaters on Friday. She plays a framed government agent who must prove her innocence and find out who betrayed her, all the while warding off assassins.

Carano sat down with Reuters to talk about her first film and making the transition from fighting to acting.

Q: You've never starred in a film before. What was that like?

A: "I feel like I went to Film School 101 on 'Haywire' because I never experienced anything like this. I've never read lines with an actor and I got Michael Fassbender for my very first actor in Dublin. I was sitting there in awe. I was like, 'Okay, this is what's he's doing, so I just gotta keep up.' He actually became a mentor to me for the majority of the movie."

Q: Any take-away moments for you during this first experience?

A: "Every single day in this movie is ingrained in my heart. You have certain firsts in your life but this whole movie was a first -- my first time acting, my first day of filming in Dublin with Michael Fassbender. Steven Soderbergh is my first director. It was my first time in Barcelona, my first time in New Mexico."

Q: The film was designed to showcase your strengths as a fighter. That must have made your experience much less daunting.   Continued...