Actress Jaimie Alexander is the geek-girl-next-door you’ve always dreamed about…if by “girl next door” we mean statuesque beauty who can likely take out a small legion of assassins with her pinky.
Though she is a stunning former wrestler currently engaged in an intimate relationship with a double-bladed long staff, Alexander is still in full possession of the down-to-Earth ease, charm, and humor we all associate with our favorite girls-guy girls.
What is a “girls-guy girl?” (You may be asking yourself). Allow us to illuminate you. A girls-guy girl is that rare and blessed breed that is as comfortable in the company of women as she is in the company of men. She is as likely to eat pizza and drink beer as she is to be in possession of Laura Mercier make-up. She is the type of woman who loves the brothers that taught her about comics so much that she has their initials tattooed on her inner arm. A tomboy, who grew into a beauty queen, who can still make other ladies feel immediately at ease with her natural warmth and sense of welcome.
In love yet? Just wait till you see Alexander’s turn as the Goddess of War, Sif, this weekend in Thor.
This geek-girl goddess takes to the role of Sif like X-23 to her adamantium claws, and embodies all of the qualities of a warrioress, while still maintaining an essential sense of genuine femininity. That femininity includes both strength, vulnerability, and, yes, a sex-appeal that is as graceful as her fighting, rather than that forcefully “put-on” brand of sex-appeal we so often see.
We began our conversation with Alexander by connecting via the Marvel character Jubilee. We wont give all the (gory?) details, but suffice to say that it led quite naturally to an investigation into the actress’ geek-girlyness and a question about any novelty merchandise she may possess.
Jaimie Alexander: I used to have a lightsaber, but it wasn’t the cool one. My freind Milo Ventimiglia is like a huge comic-book fan, he was on “Heroes” and stuff, and he actually has his own comic-book that he does called “Berserker” and I went to his office and, of course, he has the storm trooper helmet. So we went around and played with lightsabers — it was really awkward. I had some of that, and I always had a cape (leans in conspiratorially) but shhhh, it was a “Superman” cape, don’t say anything, I’m a fan of DC comics.
But yeah I always had stuff like that, but it was mainly my brothers’ stuff because that’s how I got started in comics, and it’s funny because I stopped reading them for awhile. I got into high school and then I came out here to be an actor and it was one of those things where I just didn’t follow them as much. I don’t even think I knew where to go to get them out here. This land was so foreign to me. And then a couple of years ago I started reading some more. They came out with Wolverine and Jubilee and it’s okay, it’s not like it used to be. It’s a little different and with the whole vampire thing I was like ‘what the f***!’ I mean it was still good, but then all of a sudden I start learning about X-23 from Craig Kyle when I got on “Thor.” I started reading X-23 and I was like ‘Holy Monkeys!’ It’s like everything I wanted, it’s like Wolverine and Jubilee together mixed into one person and then you still have Gambit who’s there, and that’s really awesome, and that’s my new obsession.
SR: How surreal is it that you’re on a coke can?
JA: (laughing) It’s weird.
SR: What’s the strangest piece of merchandise with your image on it that you’ve seen?
JA: It’s a toss up between the action figure because it’s a little mini-me, and then at 7-Eleven they have a straw of me with my arm up (sword and all) and it looks like I’m trying to kill something. It’s like, ‘You’re drinking out of me, that’s weird.’ But it’s just been so cool, my brothers have been so tickled by it and my mom loves it and I’m just thankful to have that, you know. As an actress you just think ‘wow, this is all only going to help me get more work.’ I’m totally living my dream.
SR: Did you hardcore pursue this? Did Kenneth Branagh sort of find you, or did you go to your agents saying ‘you have to get me in for this because I am perfect to play this role?’
JA: You know it’s funny because I had read about it months and months prior because I had actually tested for a film called “Red Dawn” with Chris (Hemsworth). And I never met Chris, but I really wanted that movie and I was like ‘man!’ You know I was so bummed when I didn’t get it. Then all of a sudden this “Thor” audition came up and I said ‘okay, I just know I’m supposed to work with this guy.’ It was so weird and I said ‘I can do this, I can play a Super Hero.’ You know I already sort of feel like I am, that’s like the geek side of me. When I’m out running I’m like ‘yeah, I’m Sif.’ Too much information.
SR: Hate to contradict, but it’s actually just the right amount.
JA: (laughing) But, yeah I went in and I read for the part, and I only read for the casting director. Kenneth Branagh was in Sweden at that time. So they sent in my tape and all of a sudden I get this phone call and my manager is like, ‘Sooo, Kenneth Branagh wants to have a Skype conversation with you.’ And I was like, ‘Holy mother!’ And yeah, he saw the tape and had a conversation with me and got to know my personality and told me to go in and do it so many different ways, do it angry, fun…Then I got the part a couple of days later, I didn’t have to screen test or anything.
She takes a minute to think and then corrects herself, saying:
JA: Actually, the guys at Marvel played a huge joke on me which I still need to get them back for. On a Friday they called me and said, ‘Okay you need to master a British accent, we’re going to send you a new script and you need to go over it and we want you to come in Monday and you’re going to have a screen test.’ They didn’t send me the script! I was freaking out the whole weekend! I was like, ‘Dude they didn’t send me the script! What am I supposed to do? I don’t know what I’m supposed to say.’ And I get there on Monday and I was like, ‘Something’s fishy.’ Because then I got a phone call from Ken saying, ‘We’re really proud of you…’ And I was like, ‘What? What is happening? Did I get this part?’ So I go in there and everyone starts cracking up! And they’re like, ‘Ah, we’re just kidding, now go to wardrobe.’ And I was like, ‘I’m gonna kill all of you! But thank you, I love you!’ And I went to wardrobe.