Jenna Willis will next be seen as Nadia in Three Seconds starring Clive Owen and Common. She recently wrapped on Code Black and played Tanya Brown on the Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series American Crime Story by Ryan Murphy. We had the wonderful opportunity to interview her. Check out the interview below.
Thank you for granting the interview, Jenna! We’re excited about “Three Seconds.” You’re playing Nadia. Tell us more about your character and role in the film.
The film is a drama based on a book of the same name by Anders Roslund and Börge Hellström. It’s based on an ex-convict working undercover who intentionally gets himself incarcerated in order to infiltrate the mob at a maximum security prison. Nadia is a young girl mixed up with the wrong crowd who ultimately needs to decide how she wants to spend the rest of her life when she finds herself at odds with Grens (played by Common).
What can the audience expect?
All of the good stuff: mystery, violence, suspense…and me running in high heels which I never thought I could do. (laughs)
Did you do any research to play the character?
Always. It’s one of the most important (and one of my favorite) parts in developing a character. Being a Jersey girl myself, playing a character like Nadia always brings back a little dose of home, which I love.
You played Tanya Brown on the Emmy and Golden Globe-winning series American Crime Story.
I think there are times you pinch yourself and say, “is this really happening?” This was one of those times for me. Sitting in the courtroom and seeing John Travolta, Cuba Gooding Jr., Sarah Paulson, David Schwimmer, and Courtney B. Vance allowed me to truly appreciate how beautiful the craft is. Courtney literally gave me goosebumps every time he opened his mouth. Being a part of this team was forever life-changing.
Is there a role you would love to play? Why?
Of course! There are many. I have a dream of one day getting to play Julia Robert’s daughter. I would also love nothing more than to be in a film with Holly Hunter. I think I’d actually cry. She’s so witty and talented; she is my idol!
What’s next for you?
I think the beauty of what I do is that I never know what tomorrow brings. That can be the most stressful and, also, the most exhilarating thing. On the bright side, you can keep an eye out for me the in the feature Three Seconds, Code Black, and a new show called Romance Anthology on Go90/AwesomenessTV, Verizon’s new platform in 2018. But…why do you ask? Got a job for me? (laughs)
Is there anything you would like to add that we haven’t asked?
I have a lot of friends who are lost because they can’t figure out what they want to do with their lives. I have the opposite problem: I know exactly what I want to do and what brings me joy, but because of the nature of the industry, it sometimes can feel like this never ending feeling of what tomorrow will bring. But, because I’m sadistic and twisted I keep doing it. (laughs) I’m kidding, mostly, but if you’ve ever found something you truly love doing, don’t ever let it go!
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Featured Image Credit: Sam Zachrich.