Alex Lombard, the love interest in "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter," credits costar Dominic Cooper for making her feel comfortable on set. That was a lucky break, Lombard points out, considering that she was mostly naked at the time.
"My first day of working with him, I was straddling [Dominic] naked in a bathtub," Lombard said when reached by telephone. "He did everything to make me feel really comfortable."
Based on the bestselling novel by Seth Grahame-Smith, "Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" explores a secret history of the 16th president of the United States. Henry Sturgess, a 900-year-old vampire played by Cooper, takes Lincoln (Benjamin Walker) under his wing, showing him the supernatural side of America.
Lombard plays Gabrielle, Henry's love interest and the sexy comic relief in the film.
"We had a couple of cute, flirty scenes when Abe Lincoln first comes to Henry Sturgess's house," Lombard explained. "There's a scene where he sees me a little exposed, and I think [Lincoln] is taken aback by that at first."
Lombard was suitably impressed with the cast and crew, saying the producers had assembled an interesting group of people.
"They were very socially conscious and politically aware," she enthused. "We had great conversations and I thought 'Wow! This is special. Something special is happening with this group.'"
Lombard said she landed the role of Gabrielle by auditioning like everyone else.
"I was so drawn by the title; I was a little familiar with the book. When I saw they were making a movie, I was super-excited," the actress enthused. "The title alone I find to be really intriguing -- what a great idea for a mash-up!
"Seth Grahame-Smith also adapted the screenplay; he wrote the book and adapted the screenplay."
Gabrielle is funny and flirty, but Lombard points out the character didn't read like that in the script.
"There are a couple of winks and nods here and there; it wasn't super, super serious," she said. "It definitely had a sense of humor, which I love."
The actress also credits director Timur Bekmambetov for giving her freedom to explore her character.
"He gave me a lot of range to be free," Lombard said. "We shot in the beautiful historic home in the French Quarter [in New Orleans]. I thought I was transported into another world. It was pretty easy to get into the feeling of it. He let me do my thing, and it was really great."
Lombard said she knew she wanted to be an actress from the moment she was born. Her previous film appearances include parts in Christopher Nolan's "Inception" and a starring role opposite Shannyn Sossamon in Johnny Roc's "Man Without a Head."
"['Man Without a Head' is] a very artistic endeavor," Lombard said. "[Johnny Roc] is really playing his cards close to his vest and not revealing too much about the movie. He really is a true artist, creating this otherworldly movie."
The actress also enjoyed appearing in the final season of HBO's "Big Love," which allowed her to meet and work with the cast of one of her favorite shows.
"Actors are kind of like circus performers. Instead of going from town to town, we go from job to job," she explained. "You do develop a sense of family and community with the people you are working with. That's the special bond that takes place."
"Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter" opens nationwide on Friday, June 22.
Find showtimes and tickets near you on Yahoo! Movies.
- Arts & Entertainment
- Dominic Cooper
- Abe Lincoln