Lucy Liu began her acting career in television and made a name for herself as Ling Woo in hit television series Ally McBeal.Before long she was appearing in movies most notably Charlie's Angels with Drew Barrymore and Cameron Diaz.The film went on to take more than $258 million at the worldwide box office.Since then she starred in Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle, Ballistic with Antonio Banderas and Quentin Tarantino's Kill Bill and Lucky Number Slevin.Her latest film sees her star alongside Cedric the Entertainer and Nicollette Sheridan in Code Name: The Cleaner.

Is it easy for you to do comedy?
It’s something I love doing, but I don’t know that I find it easy. I really, really enjoy it, and if I had the opportunity I would do more, I just think there is something really wonderful about making people laugh. It’s just great to be able to change someone’s state of mind or mood, or bring unity to a room since laughter has this unique capacity to bring people together.
What do you like about working with comedians?

Working with comics is wonderful because they just know they don’t have to stick to the script. I do think there are some very talented actors out there who may not get the opportunity to do that, yet if allowed to be, could be really, really funny. Some people like the comfort of sticking to the script but I like to go off it sometimes as, certainly in comedy, you just never by doing that, what is going to turn up.

As in using a plunger as a weapon?

Yes! The director said, I don’t think we should use the plunger, and I was like, the plunger is really funny, it’s totally gross, really inappropriate and it’s funny! Then I added that the more he fought me, the more nasty stuff I would add in there, like the toilet brush too!

You were also a producer on this, how does producing compare with acting?

As an executive producer you have a little more say, you can go in there any really have an opinion without worrying that someone is going to think you are taking over the set. You are able to have a creative point of view and can participate in a way that can be really helpful. I just think it gives you a certain amount of freedom and makes you feel more part of a team. You also tend to look at the picture on a more overall level as opposed to just through the eyes of an actor.

Was it Drew Barrymore that inspired you to produce?

My producer involvement on Code Name was very different to Drew’s on Charlie’s Angels. Drew was on Charlie’s Angels from the very early stages, but by the time I came on board with this, the project had been green lit, there was a director on board etc. so my input was related more to my character and the fight sequences.

I am far more involved in the Charlie Chan project, which I have been working on forever, from the very embryonic stages. It actually seemed funny to come on board with a project as Exec Producer, that flew by so quickly, when on something like Charlie Chan, I have been working on it for some six years and it’s still in the works!

Did you enjoy the action element of this role?

Absolutely, I love doing it, but I think production loved me doing it more! I was like, I don’t think we need to do that much fighting, and production were like, no, let’s have more fighting. When we then came to test the film, there was just an energy radiating from the audience when the action started so they were obviously right.

You are from Queens, NYC. Do you think being from Queens helped you play this tough character?

I grew up in areas surrounded by all sorts of people, it was very diverse and people in New York are all very direct. They don’t beat around the bush. They are not impolite, just to the point. My character, Gina, is very spicy and sassy and I enjoyed playing her, with that quality of directness.

Is Lucy Liu sassy and direct in real life?

I have retained a little of that, yes. It is obviously more extreme in the movie. I don’t think if I disagreed with someone I would start doing the windmills on them! At least not the first or second time, maybe the third time, if they weren’t listening to me, I’d get the windmills out!

I hear it was very cold the night you and Nicollette shot your bubble bath scene?

It was freezing, but we did shoot it at about three in the morning! We were doing nights and here we were in our lingerie in a kiddie pool, surrounding by bubbles. It was so cold the bubbles kept disappearing so we were like, more bubbles, more bubbles!

It was super cold and I got to the point where I just stood up and said, Cut, you’ve got enough romping in the pool now, for the fantasy moment. Also, funnily enough, when most of the crew would have otherwise been saying, I’m off to bed, suddenly everyone was there for that shot, it was like a dance party!

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