Abbie Cornish Gets Tough
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Abbie Cornish has more than a sucker punch in store for moviegoers—she’s delivering a knockout blow with a string of attention-getting roles. After charming critics in indie fare like Bright Star, the 28-year-old actress from Down Under is poised to conquer Hollywood, and for compelling reasons: She’s beautiful, she’s talented—and she knows how to handle a high-powered weapon.
On when she knew she’d found her calling: “The very first time I had an acting gig, which was on the Australian soap opera Children’s Hospital. Toward the end of the first day, I was having the best time being in an environment full of people working on this one thing and having the opportunity to dress up and be a part of something. I was amazed at what it was like to step through the television onto the other side and look at the inner workings of it. I was only 15, and I remember calling my mum and telling her how much I loved it. I said, “Do you think I can keep doing this?” And she said, “If you want to do it.” The second moment was when I did Somersault, my first lead role in a feature film. The experience of making that movie from start to end—I’d never experienced anything like it.”
On the pleasures of splitting her time between LA and her native Australia:
"Los Angeles has become a second home to me. I feel comfortable here. There’s so much to do in the city, and I love the outdoors—hiking, surfing, running along the beach. I really do love LA for what it is—regardless of the industry—as a place. I grew up on a farm, and when I go home to Australia, my mum lives by the ocean and my dad still lives on the farm, so I’ve got the best of both worlds. It’s such a relaxing place. I go back home, and my skin and my hair change color, and my mood changes.”
On finding both her inner and outer badass on the set of the upcoming action-fantasy thriller Sucker Punch, out this month:
“We trained in mixed martial arts, with guns and swords. We all were given a particular fighting style for our character, and we were really strong and bold and aggressive. I had an M4 and a shotgun, and a broadsword. I absolutely loved it all. The guns surprised all of us girls. I don’t think we thought we were going to love the guns as much as we did. They had this massive gun called a SAW [squad automatic weapon], and all of the girls had to have a go on that. The bullets fire out so fast and hard, it makes you scream as you shoot! It’s like therapy. We used to call it the therapy gun.”
Photographs by Art Streiber
Fashion shoot: December 2013 issue of Los Angeles Confidential magazine.