Miami Living Magazine

Michelle Rodriguez

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Page 64 of 115

ML EXCLUSIVE! like, 'Ohmygod, I really did kill her off because she doesn't play the girlfriend or give up the ass," she good-naturedly quips. "I'm joking. I'm joking. It's just funny when you look back at it." As she talks about the female's role in films, I become more and more impressed by her vast knowledge of the subject, and tell her so. "I'm a big fucking feminist," she replies as the reason behind it. "But I love men," she adds with a laugh as if to address the rumors swirling about that question her sexuality. "I get a lot of the lesbians coming up to me and they're like, 'Yeah, Michelle, us lesbos need to stick together.' I'm like, 'You are aware I love dick, right?' I love my lesbos, man. I love women too. But don't ruin my game with the boys," she says with a smile. Currently single, she tells me that she doesn't have time to date. Getting ready to start filming in London for the next few months, she asks me how a new relationship can work with her away, that is, unless she had someone who could up and follow her around. The thought causes her to burst into laughter. "I need a man who has got his own thing going on, ya know? I like men, I don't like boys." Filming has her tied up a lot of the time, but has gifted her with the platform and funds to make another dream come to fruition. Even before Michelle became an actress, she wanted to be a writer, and felt that acting could help launch that dream. Inundated with several elaborate concepts for stories, Michelle is finally starting to flesh them out. "I feel like our generation really doesn't have a voice because our generation just reached the age to express it. For me, I see massive gaps and so much opportunity to make cool, fun stories that are about that generation coming to and being introduced to this one. It's just fucking cool. I'm really excited." She let me in on the subject matters that two of her stories are driven by, one focuses on drugs. "I did all the research last year, so much that I have to detox this year," she laughs. "That's how I found out that I had metals in my system." (Mercury from all the fish she consumes.) "I was like, 'Doc, I did a lot of crazy shit, Hunter S. Thompson-style last year, you really need to check my system," she says theatrically. "He's like, 'Damn girl, what did you do to your liver? Your kidneys? Your brain's fucked up.' So now, I'm on all these regimens to fix it, but I'm 70 pages into that and it's been tough because I'm working on so many projects." Her other screenplay is based on an elaborate and thought- provoking matriarch society. Looking for a legitimate way to enlist a group of actresses she has had admired over the years (Jodie Foster, Meryl Streep, Susan Sarandon. Sophia Loren, Whoopi Goldberg), she came up with a story line based on an assemblage of powerful women. "I was like, 'That's it! A secret society of freakin' women that been around since the Renaissance era.' Back in the day, it was all about balancing out, whispering in the ears of kings and queens. Today's day and age, is more about being that CEO that makes changes, takes the family money from the Medicis in Italy, here in America from the blue bloods and tries to make positive changes in government with it." The progressive writer is hoping that by promoting and projecting her ideas on the big screen it will resonate with society, since seeing is believing. "It's time to fucking put that woman on a pedestal. She's fucking earned it. Thousands of fucking years of bull shit. It's times to make a film that just pays homage to her mind, pays homage to her ability to solve problems, pays homage to what she's been pretty much doing since we existed. It's just about that time!" Hearing Michelle speak so fervently on the subject, I realize that not only does she have the imagination to create such a layered and entertaining story but the wealth of knowledge to execute it. I am in such awe that I am confused for a moment and have to ask, does this really exist? "Exactly!" she screams excitedly. "You see what I'm saying!" Michelle is incredibly savvy and pulls from every resource available to her. Thankful to be in a profession that allows global travel and facilitates her interacting with a cornucopia of eccentrics and intellectuals, she isn't letting one bit of this experience go to waste. She is consistently nourishing her mind with science magazines, visiting schools and nanotechs, and keeping up-to-date with "sci-fi stuff" to use in her writing. "I'm always prepared. I got it all in my head, locked and loaded," she assures me. Michelle's eyes are wide open now, but it's been a journey to get Do you get out to Miami at all? "I love me some Miami. I have friends all over the place there. I got to Set, hit the beach. I can't live without water. I like that Russian Spa, man. The cafeteria is my favorite part because they have all of these detoxifying drinks. I missed Winter Music Conference, but I feel I'm too old. If I go now, I look like that old chick who's trying to party hard. But I miss it, man. Miss the big crowd, the pumping music, great DJs from Europe..." where she is. An Angeleno for 8 years, (she recently acquired an apartment in New York, so that she can be bicoastal) Michelle admits that the road hasn't always been so smooth and clear. "My spiritual evolution happened here… I learned so much in Los Angeles, it was like my college to becoming an adult and understanding the difference between evil and selfish and good and light. I've seen so much shit… It's so hard to keep your dignity in this town and be a woman. Not for me because I'm such a tomboy, the guys just like hanging out with me." She reveals that she has been witness to far too many people broken by the City of Angels. Not immune, she confesses that she too faltered. "Yeah, I stumbled and I got DUIs, freakin' fucked around, made money. I lost it. All this stuff," she candidly divulges. "But then I look back and I'm like, 'Holy shit, I became a better person because of all this," she say with a laugh. "I'm like, Wow, I actually grew up. I think before I act now. I actually care. So, LA is special to me that way." She cites the mistakes actors make that lead to their demise, one being too vain. "If I did not have focus, I would be one fucked up —I don't even want to mention the names in Hollywood. I wish there was a boot camp for people who don't realize that it's a gift to stare outside of yourself. I think a lot of people drown, because they're so inside of themselves. It's like, me, me, me. I'm depressed because I—I feel this because I. Oh poor me. I don't feel good. The more you focus on you, the more depressed you're going to get and the more you're going to drown in yourself. You gotta get outside of yourself. You gotta look out at the world. Breathe a little bit, take it in," says Michelle. Once regarded by the industry as a drunken party girl, ["I partied all the time. I just didn't drink all the time. They were wrong about that part," Michelle corrects.] and "pretty much blacklisted" for it, Michelle has emerged as this fiercely focused, magnetic powerhouse working with the likes of James (Jim to Michelle) Cameron and a multitude of film industry heavyweights. Her metamorphosis is inspiring, and I, for one, can't wait to see the bravado she'll unleash in her acting and writing in the coming years. ML MIAMI LIVING 63

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