《Sunday Mail》采访 （2011.5.15）
记者：Jenny Eden 翻译： Be-Ti-An
JBCN注： 发表这采访时候， 《The Chicago Code（芝加哥法则）》在英国Sky1电视台晚上9点播映。
她放弃了这些安逸，穿上防护衣学起了如何在黑帮枪战现场收集子弹。新剧≪The Chicago Code≫的拍摄地正是于美国暴力罪案最昭著的城市之一，但这也正是Jennifer最熟悉不过的城市。这里不仅是她的新剧制作地，更是她口中的“故乡”。
为拍摄《The Chicago Code》作资料收集的过程中，她跟随着凶杀组警员进入残酷的真实世界，首次参与的就是一处枪击案现场——在这里一名受害者喋血街头。
除了能第一时间亲历现场外，对于能藉着拍摄这部硬派剧集的机会与家人——加拿大商人丈夫Ken Dixon以及女儿Ella （:loveit: ）重返故乡，她也表现得相当兴奋。在此剧中，她饰演芝加哥首位女警察局长Teresa Colvin。
出演此剧的还有澳大利亚演员Jason Clarke以及资深演员Delroy Lindo。而且与多数美剧不同的是，故事发生地点就是拍摄现场，而且还包括当地一些最险要的街区。
不过想到剧集的编剧是Shawn Ryan的话，这些也就不足为奇。他还是同样硬朗的写实型获奖剧集≪The Sheild≫的作者。Jennifer从不随便奉承这个城市，但她的经历并没有抹杀她对这座城市的爱。她表示，重新称之为“家乡”，这里面没有一点难度。
Jennifer职业生涯中另一个标志性重要角色正是≪The L Word（拉字至上）≫里面来自常青藤盟校的女同角色Bette Porter。故事共经历了6季，也为她带来了多个奖项的提名，包括一些同志群体的殊荣。
Jennifer曾笑言这部剧集在同志团体中的巨大影响令她成为了这一群体的荣誉成员。然而，《The L Word》会有如此轰动完全是意料之外，更未想像过播出后还将会占据了她生命中整整五个年头。
目前，她希望Teresa Colvin这个角色同样能影响女性。她观察过希拉里·克林顿，就在她与美国总统巴拉克·奥巴马一起观看击毙本拉登的情况之时，她看到这位女性是如何强悍地处事， 不过，Jennifer也表示并不羡慕希拉里的这份差事。
同样在Sky1电视台热播的美剧《Lie to Me（千谎百计）》中客串男主角Tim Roth饰演的鉴谎专家Cal的前妻，以及与Denzel Washington合作的后启示录风格电影《The Book of Eli （末日天书）》， 加上Jennifer的教育和成长过程， 她轻而易举地演起了一个坚强的女性角色。真实中的Jennifer，父亲在她9岁得时候就已经去世，而她本人是由母亲养育成人的。
另外一提， 为了配合《The Chicago Code》的拍摄， Jennifer不但学习了枪械知识、而且参加了拳击训练，以便以最佳的身体状态进行拍摄、而且不输给男性演员。
这个过程也让她感到有趣：“我同意了参加拳击训练，因为它很男性化、而且让人有打人的冲动，而且我也不想被人打到我的脑袋。可惜这真是太难了， 最后剧集完成后我彻底放弃了。 ”
《The Chicago Code》在英国Sky1高清电视台每周四晚9点播映。
[ via Sunday Mail ]
WHEN most Hollywood actors go for a ride along with the police they are lucky to see more action than a speeding ticket.
Tucked away in the back of a control car they get a safe, sanitised view of the world their shows are set in.
Not Jennifer Beals.
She got a waiver to sign, a stab-proof vest and a lesson on how to collect bullet casings at the scene of a gang shooting. But then her new series, The Chicago Code, is set in one of America’s most violent cities and in a world Jennifer is all too familiar with. It’s not just a location for her new TV series – growing up, it’s also the place she called home.
The 47-year-old actress said: “It was not the first time that I’ve seen bullet holes in cars. It’s not the first time that I’ve seen shell casings, and it’s frankly not the first time I’ve seen anybody shot. It’s not so shocking. I grew up on the south side of Chicago.”
Her brush with brutal reality researching The Chicago Code came when the homicide cops she was shadowing were first at the scene of the shooting – finding the victim bleeding out on the street.
She said: “What was shocking was that there was a group gathered around this man who were all very upset that he had been shot and it was really clear that there were people there who knew who had shot him and that it was a gang-related incident, but that nobody would come forward with any information. To see six-year-old children playing in the street at 2am a block away from drug dealers – that’s also shocking.
“I was able to see how the police department set up a crime scene, being able to follow the trail of blood to figure out where he would’ve been shot, where the shooter would have been and looking for the evidence of shell casings, which I helped the detectives find.”
It wasn’t her only encounter with life on the streets when another call-out left them trying to help a mentally ill woman who was running amok.
She said: “She kept taking her shirt off and refusing to put it back on. She clearly had not been taking her meds, and she thought I was Obama’s sister and that I should somehow save her.”
Despite what she saw at first-hand Jennifer was thrilled to find a role in a gritty TV series that could take her back home with her family – her Canadian businessman husband Ken Dixon and five-year-old daughter Ella. She plays Superintendent Teresa Colvin, the city’s first-ever female police chief.
The show also stars Australian actor Jason Clarke and veteran Delroy Lindo and, unusually for US TV, it was really filmed in the city where it was set, using some of the toughest areas as locations.
That’s no real surprise given The Chicago Code’s creator, Shawn Ryan, was also the man behind brutally realistic, award-winning cop show The Shield. It was never going to sugar-coat the city but her walk on the wild side hasn’t diminished her love of it and she says she could easily call it home again.
She said: “I feel such a great love for Chicago. I am protective of it, the city is so beautiful and the people are so great. My mum is still there and my friends. I told my manager that it was one of two cities I could imagine spending long periods of time with my family.”
Jennifer was drawn away from her home town when she landed the lead role in classic 1980s movie, Flashdance. She had been studying at Yale when the chance to play Alex Owens – a welder by day and exotic dancer by night came up.
Before then she had played one minor movie role and suddenly found herself a major star with one of the biggest-grossing films of the year and an Oscar-winning soundtrack. But rather than capitalise on the hit film, she turned down roles in order to stay at university, where she majored in American literature.
Her next big career move came when she played Ivy League-educated lesbian Bette Porter in The L Word for six seasons. Her work on the series saw her nominated for a number of awards, including gay and lesbian groups.
She has joked that the show turned her into an honorary lesbian because of the impact it had on the gay community but she admits at the time she had no idea how significant the lesbian drama would be, or that it would take up five years of her life.
She said: “I am proud to have been a part of the show. I have had so many fans come up to me who were really deeply appreciative of the show and what it had meant for them and their own sense of identity and their own sense of inclusion in our society and in our culture.
“We made a whole community visible. It is not often you get to make that kind of impact. It’s affected me personally because I’ve come in contact with women who have the bravery to be out in the world with their sexuality. I didn’t pay attention to gay issues before the show but now I take them more personally.”
She is hoping her role as Teresa Colvin could also make an impact on women. She has studied Hillary Clinton, who sat with US President Barack Obama watching the live feed of Osama Bin Laden being shot, to see how strong, powerful women handle themselves but she admits she doesn’t envy Hillary her job.
She joked: “I would last about a week then I would lose my mind.”
Jennifer, whose credits also include playing Tim Roth’s wife in another Sky1 hit show, Lie To Me, and starring in post-apocalyptic movie The Book of Eli opposite Denzel Washington, credits her own upbringing with helping her slip so effortlessly into playing strong women. Her father died when she was nine and she was brought up by her mum.
She said: “I just assumed that I should have the same rights and access to things like baseball bats and field time. Maybe it was the amount of time my mum spent reading Greek myths to me, the whole literature about the goddess somehow permeated and there’s an element of power there.”
And just to make sure she didn’t fall short for The Chicago Code, she not only practiced at the gun range but also took boxing lessons to make sure she was in great shape and ready to slug it out with the boys.
She laughed: “I took up boxing because it is such a masculine thing to do, to want to punch people – I’ve never wanted to be hit in the head. But it is very hard and I completely gave it up when the show was done.”
The Chicago Code is on Sky1 on Thursday at 9pm.