SOPHIE MONK on 'DATE MOVIE' Contributed by Michael J. Lee, Executive Editor for Radio Free Entertainment
February 3, 2006
Written and directed by two of the Scary Movie scribes, Date Movie irreverently lampoons the romantic comedy genre in its story of a young woman (Alyson Hannigan) whose dream marriage to her soulmate (Adam Campbell) is threatened by a wicked ex-girlfriend (Sophie Monk) and a disapproving father (Eddie Griffin). Over the course of the whirlwind romance, slews of movies are spoofed, including Bridget Jones's Diary, Meet the Parents, Hitch, Wedding Crashers, Napoleon Dynamite, The Wedding Planner, The Lord of the Rings, Kill Bill, My Best Friend's Wedding, and King Kong.
In this interview, Sophie Monk talks about shooting the movie and playing Andy, the evil psycho to Alyson Hannigan's starry-eyed sweetheart. A native of Australia who scored public attention on TV's Popstars, Sophie also discusses her transition to American film and her adventures in learning to drive on the right side of the road.
MEDIA: How did you land the part of Andy?
SOPHIE: It was only like two months before we started filming, I think--or a month before--and I went on about three auditions for the role. Just went on like a cattle call and then got through that way.
A lot of pretty girls would balk at this kind of role. Have you always been into performing comedy?
I love it. That's all I'm about, just having fun. You've got to enjoy it. Even in Australia, I've hosted radio shows, through comedy, and I was always the class clown at school. And I wasn't pretty at school. I was a bit of a dork, and just kind of turned up, no paper and pen, and tried to entertain everyone. So it's kind of all I've really done.
So how'd you turn pretty?
[laughs] I don't think I have. It's just good hair and makeup.
You do a parody of Paris Hilton's Carl's Jr. commercial with the hamburger and the car washing. Was your sliding off the car planned, or an accident that ended up being funny?
No, we did a few takes of that. That was on purpose. And there was a stuntman there just in case, and there was like a mattress on the bottom. [laughs] But it was fun.
How many hamburgers were killed in the making of that scene?
Too many! They just kept whipping them out, and I'm a vegetarian. And I was like, "Surely they're going to run out soon." And they come out with a fresh burger...
What's your take on Paris?
I think she's great. You know, she's fun--she's fun to watch.
Did they ask you to mimic her specifically for your character?
No, not at all. They just let me go with it and take it where I wanted to kind of take it, so there was no one it was particularly based on. And I had seen the Paris Hilton ad, so I just kind of played around with it and did my own thing with the hamburgers.
Do you have any disastrous date stories of your own?
I get really nervous. I'm really bad. I had like one boyfriend since high school, and then we broke up not so long ago, so I'm like a teenager when it comes to dating. I always end up [does a goofy laugh] laughing like that. I'm terrible. Or they'll talk to me when there's like food hanging out. Yeah, I'm not good with dates.
Do you like romantic movies?
I do. Although I don't really like girly-girl movies. I prefer the movies boys like, with cars and...Keeps me entertained a bit more.
Growing up, was there a romantic movie you saw that really got to you?
Legends of the Fall. I actually walked out of that crying. And not because of the movie--because I felt ripped off in life, that I realized I'd never be with Brad Pitt. Honestly. And my mom's like, "Is it that bad?" And I was like, [crying] "I'll never get to be with him!" And I was like 12 or something. [laughs]
So what's your advice to 12-year-old boys who may be watching Date Movie and thinking the same thing about you?
I'd tell them that they're not missing out on anything because I'm a bad date anyway. [laughs]
Of the films you parodied, what are some of your favorites?
I love Lord of the Rings. And also Kill Bill, I'd say. And My Best Friend's Wedding.
What was it like spoofing Kill Bill, with the sword and all?
Well, the stuntman was the guy that worked on the Kill Bill movie. So he's like, "Hold your arm like this!" And I'm trying to do it in high heels and a miniskirt, so it was very interesting.
Who do you play in the upcoming Adam Sandler movie Click?
Her name's Stacy, and she's David Hasselhoff's secretary, and David Hasselhoff is Adam's boss in the film. And she's kind of a floozy that kind of just works there because she gets around a bit. Another serious character.
So what's David Hasselhoff like? Does he move in slow motion?
[laughs] A little bit! No, he's really cool. He's really down-to-earth and a really, really nice guy. And actually, he's got a massive fan base in Australia. So I've met up with him a few times over there as well. We've done a few shows together.
Does his Australian fanbase rival his German fanbase? (Because legend has it that "Germans love Hasselhoff.")
They're kind of close, I think! There's like some serious Hoff-mania going down there! It's crazy!
How many Hasselhoff CDs do you have?
Uh...none. [laughs] But he can sing. He can really sing.
How did you like working with Alyson Hannigan?
Oh, I love her. She is such a sweet girl, so easy to work with. It was so nice.
Were you a fan of Buffy the Vampire Slayer?
Yeah, actually. But I love her in American Pie, too. So it was pretty cool for me.
Is it easier or harder to play the villainess who tries to destroy her onscreen when you get along with her so well offscreen?
Oh, it's easier. Because I guess you can be relaxed and play around. If you're uptight around someone, you're not going to relax and do your best performance. So I guess it was just real easy because she's so cool and down-to-earth.
Do you enjoy playing the bad girl?
Yeah, I do, actually. It's nice because like in me personally, I'm not actually very b*tchy, so it was fun to do that role. Because, you know, my specialties seem to be blonde, bimbo, and floozy. So I thought I'd change it up a bit and be a b*tch. My resume's getting quite full now!
Alyson had to deal with the fat suit. Did you have any physical hardships of your own on this shoot?
Just the high heels. They killed me! And I had to run up the stairs in the high heels. And towards the end, my little toe just gave in and like stuck out the side, and I just couldn't tuck it back in. It hurt so much. I just thought, "Just don't give me any foot shots." They're all laughing because it was like a wreck.
What about the scene with the jackhammer?
That was pretty hard, too, because everyone's giving me direction like, "Bounce more!" And I was like [gasping for breath].
How long have you been doing music?
Since I was eight. I was classically trained. I was planning on being an opera singer, actually, and did all the training to be a teacher, and then auditioned for Popstars and went down a whole different route.
Is Popstars similar to American Idol?
No, it's more like Making the Band. And it was making a girl group. And then I did an album on my own after that.
How is working here in the States different than working in Australia for you?
I love home because my family's there, and I've got a nice little fanbase there. But it's different. It's all music there for me, so this is a totally different ballgame. But I get bored really quickly, so I find it's just good to shake it up a bit, try different things.
Do you currently live in Australia?
No, I live here now. But I've been back about five times. I miss my family so much, so I do that trip far too much. Now I just take lots of sleeping tablets--try and just arrive there. Because it just kills me, that flight. It's exhausting.
Which country has better catering service on their movie sets: Australia or the US?
It depends on the budgets. I've been on some Australian things, and they're like crackers and stuff. But our food is beautiful. Like the quality of our food is really good. I'd probably have to say Australia. Sorry, guys.
What was the biggest culture shock for you in coming to America?
Driving on the other side of the road. I seriously smashed a lot of rental cars. I brought the car back once and it had like bushes hanging out the side.
Did you get the $15 insurance?
Oh, hell yeah!
So have you literally driven on the wrong side of the road here?
A few times, yeah! And because you're used to protecting the other side of the car--because we actually sit in the other seat--I'm always still skimming people, and people are like honking me. I'm doing better now, though. Got a little Mini Cooper. Everyone says, "You should drive a Ford [SUV]." And I was like, "No, trust me, everyone's safer around me in this car."
Thanks for your time. And good luck with the driving...