They don't come more blonde and beautiful than Helena Mattsson. The Swedish model/actress has a wide array of credits; some geeks will remember her as Rebecca in IRON MAN 2 or for her revealing turn as an alien in SPECIES: THE AWAKENING, while TV hounds will likely have seen her in plenty, including Desperate Housewives, 666 Park Avenue, Fargo and American Horror Story: Hotel. Her most recent film is CODE OF HONOR, in which she stars alongside the one and only Steven Seagal.
The Hottie Stop recently spoke to Helena about her new role, how her career got started, messing around online and much more!
Tell me a little about the film and how you became involved with it.
I worked with director Michael Winnick before and he called me and said he had a super cool script and it's very last minute so to get back to him right away. [Laughs] A couple days later I was on a plane to Salt Lake City to shoot.
Is that a typical situation, where you're called to do something so last minute like that?
Yeah, I would say this industry is sometimes very last minute.
Does that give you enough time to prepare for the role?
I was reading it over and over on the plane, trying to learn all my lines and wrap my mind around the character. And then you just dive into it.
What can you tell me about your character?
She's a dancer in a club and she's a single mom. She witnesses the bombing of a club and then... gosh, I don't want to say too much! But basically the film is about this super vigilante who comes back to the town he's from and takes the law into his own hands.
Are you a fan of this kind of film?
I like all kinds of movies. But I definitely had fun watching it!
Do you enjoy watching films that you're in?
It's definitely really weird to watch yourself. I don't think you ever get used to it, it is kinda weird. But it's also fun to see a project that you've been working on for a long time, to see how all the pieces of the puzzle come together. Because that's what it is, a big puzzle.
How did you originally get into acting?
I did a lot of musical theater growing up and then I went to acting school in Sweden, then went to study more acting in London, and I was eventually cast in a TV pilot over here. They flew me over and I got a visa that says actress on it and from then on that's what I did, I just fell in love with it.
Is it what you always knew you were going to do?
I mainly thought I was going to do theater because that's what we have most of in Sweden, but I really loved the art of filmmaking and television. But I thought originally I was going to be on stage.
How long have you been in the states?
It's been over ten years now, which is kind of crazy. Time flies.
Are you happy living here as opposed to Sweden?
Work wise it's definitely more exciting here; in Sweden there aren't a lot of people who speak the language, so there aren't a lot of opportunities to do film or television. I miss Stockholm, where I'm from, it's a lovely city. The weather is way better here.
Do you go back often?
I go back a couple of times a year, which is really important to me, to keep in touch with family and all that stuff.
What are your interests outside of acting?
I'm really into psychology, I would've loved to have worked with that somehow. But when I got that visa that says actress, there are no other options, you have to make it work. That made me work hard.
When you go back to your hometown are you treated like a huge celebrity?
[Laughs] No, in Sweden they have a lot of respect for celebrities. I did get recognized for doing the work I do here, but it's also a very safe place to go to and you can be anonymous if you want.
Do you ever google yourself?
I have, yes. It's not a good thing, it's not something you want to do. [Laughs] You see some very weird comments made about you, so I try to avoid.
What's the weirdest thing you've seen or read?
I don't know if I can say it! It's weird, just weird stuff.
What's your favorite thing to do online?
Shopping, by far. I can sit with my phone and just shop for hours. It's my favorite thing to do when I have downtime on set.
Do you have a preference between making television and movies?
Not really. There's a certain comfort to television because it's an ongoing thing. At the same time, the charm of doing a movie is that it has a beginning and an end. It's all about having a story that you want to be a part of, it doesn't matter where it's being shown.
Who is your all time celebrity crush?
Oh, wow. That's tricky. I really liked Leonardo DiCaprio and Johnny Depp growing up, those were my two big crushes for sure.
Is there a type of movie that you haven't done yet that you'd really like to do?
I'd really like to do a musical, something with music and dancing like a Moulin Rouge. I've yet to do that, that would be really, really fun.
Would you be good at the song and dance thing?
[Laughs] I used to be a dancer growing up, but the singing part I'm not so sure about.
Thank you very much for your time, Helena!
Great, thank you.