HFPA in Conversation: Mira Sorvino, the Unexpected Activist

by Kirpi Uimonen Ballesteros July 11, 2018
Actress Mira Sorvino, Golden Globe winner

magnus sundholm, HFPA

Golden Globe winner Mira Sorvino, star of the drama series Condor, talked to HFPA journalist Katherine Tulich about Harvey Weinstein, Woody Allen, how Hollywood and the world have changed since the #metoo movement started, and the United States’ current immigration policy, especially separating kids from their parents.

Being an activist wasn’t a natural choice for Sorvino. She says she feels like a little chicken without a head, a little overextended at times, but fulfilled and grateful. “There’s so much happening in the world today that we feel that if we're concerned citizens that we must act. We have a duty to step forward and use whatever tools are at our disposal to join in the situation to effect change for the better”, she explains.

Sorvino recalls one of her first auditions: “I was 16 and I was completely treated inappropriately. In order to scare me for this horror movie scene he tied me to a chair, he bruised my arm and then he gagged me. And I was all game because I'm trying to be scared for the scene. And at the end, he takes the gag out of my mouth and he says, sorry for the prophylactic. That was one of my introductions to how the acting system works. And when you're young you don't question, you're like, oh, okay, I've got to be tough, I've got to be down to really perform.”

Now in her 50s, Sorvino is grateful for the acting opportunities she got this year. “I just wrapped the film Stuber which is an action buddy comedy sort of in the vein of like 48 Hrs. or Lethal Weapon. And on Condor I play a fascinating character with a lot of layers and a strong beating heart underneath that polished exterior. She’s a CIA agent who is running the investigation trying to find Joe Turner, played by Max Irons. Each episode feels like a movie itself and everyone is on the chopping block. It’s sort of like any day could be the Red Wedding. It keeps you on your toes.

Her family keeps her grounded. “I have four beautiful children who are the heart of my life, they and my husband Christopher Backus. They give me so much joy and love. That's really the center of my life.”

Listen to the conversation here or, for immediate access to all of our podcasts, subscribe to HFPA in Conversation on iTunes.