Brazilian Rock 89 - A Revista do Rock, January 1999. Scans and translation by Fernandaadbs
A normal girl. Extremely beautiful, but normal. At least until the day she followed her intuition and found out she was the daughter of one of the greatest rock stars ever. Or when she was invited by one of the biggest European directors to be the main role in a movie and became a movie star. With Liv Tyler, it looks like that: things happen so fast like if everything else was planned.
Liv Tyler walks by Manhattan, New York, at night, free of her two trademarks: her boyfriend for the last 18 months, the actor Joaquin Phoenix, and her long hair. Liv, 22 years old, has left River Phoenix's brother for Spacehog's band leader, Royston Langdon, and she's been around by his side with a short hair. Her new look was a special request by the director Robert Altman (The Player and Kansas City), the actress just started filming in Mississipi (USA) her new movie, Cookie's Fortune. "I'm still getting used. But when I lost my hair, I was terrified, it felt like I was naked", explains Liv to us.
LIVONA, MY DAUGHTER
Cookie's Fortune is an independent production about a murder plot and a secret between two sisters. Being part of low budget's movies and, consequently, without interference in Hollywood studios, it has been one of the guidelines imposed by the actress and her career, which began in 1994 and consecrated, in a frenzy of advertising, two years later, with Stealing Beauty.
Her only career "sin" until then was the movie Armageddon, released in the last American summer, under the charges that Liv has been sold to the film industry. "I didn't want to do the movie, but when I saw Ben Affleck, Steven Buscemi and Billy Bob Thorton had signed, I was a little tempted. After that, my dad started annoying me: 'Livona (the actress' nickname at home), you need a blockbuster in your career'", Liv explains that - tell me you didn't know it! - she's the daughter the lead singer of Aerosmith's Steven Tyler, who performs the hit "I Don't Want To Miss A Thing", one of the music themes of this movie, starred by Bruce Willis about a giant asteroid that is coming to our planet.
Armageddon still gave more headaches to the actress. According to the American tabloid National Enquirer, Bruce Willis has been flirting with her, and she was the main reason for the end of the 11 year marriage between the actor and Demi Moore. "This is disrespect against my daughter. Bruce Willis has never touched her with second intentions and I don't even think he could think about it", said Liv's mother, the ex-model Bebe Buell.
Liv started in the movie industry with Silent Fall, by the Australian Bruce Beresford, in 1994, as the super protector sister of an autistic boy, who witnessed his parents' murder. Her following movies were Heavy and Empire Records, until Liv won Bernado Bertolucci's heart, who recruited her for Stealing Beauty, about a girl who goes to an Italian village for vacation and awakes the sexual desires in the local men, besides getting to know her real father's identity. The movie caused such an impact in Cannes Festival (1996) that Liv left the festival as the next new huge movie star. Ironically, her destiny in Stealing Beauty meets her personal life. Liv only found out her real father, Steven Tyler, when she was 11, when she went to an Aerosmith concert. As an ex-model, Bebe (21 years old at that time) broke up with her boyfriend, the musician Todd Rundgren and got involved with Steven Tyler. Liv was born from this relationship, but Bebe preferred not to reveal her pregnancy to Steven. When she made up with Todd, he convinced her that he would become Liv's father. As an 11 year old, the actress went to an Aerosmith concert. In the VIP area, with her mother, she met Tyler for the first time. The lip's size was the first thing that called both attentions. "A really great connection happened between us", explains Liv. "Even though I didn't know he was my father, I've kept the black sweater I used that night and I didn't wash it, because it smelled like him", says the actress, who found out the whole true some months later. Liv and Steven worked together in the video clip "Crazy". After Bertolucci, Liv starred in That Thing You Do!, with the director Tom Hanks; Inventing The Abbotts, when she fell in love with Joaquin Phoenix; a cameo in U Turn, an Oliver Stone's movie; and Plunkett & Macleane, directed by Ridley Scott's son (Blade Runner and Alien), Jake Scott.
Her next project is the one she calls the most desirable in her career: Onegin, directed by Martha Fiennes, Ralph Fienne's sister, who's the main role in the movie, Eugene Onegin. Based on a poem written by the Russian poet Alexander Pushkin, between 1823/1831, it's the story of a disappointed aristocrat who moves from St. Petersburg to a rural property. "I just fell in love with the character I play, with a high degree of possession", tells the actress, who made a super campaign to take the role from the hands of the actress Kate Winslet, the girl from Titanic. Although the movie had a nude scene, Liv convinced the director that it would be better not to do it, but Bernardo didn't have problems convincing her to take out her clothes.
Smoking some cigarettes and wearing a black t-shirt and skirt, Liv Tyler, a gorgeous girl of 5'10", talked to us.
When did you first start thinking about being a serious actress? At the end of my teenage years. I was a little disappointed with the model life. I wasn't thinking about being it for the rest of my life. To be in the movies or theaters was always something I admired. I thought I needed to solve this mystery. Bruce Beresford was the first director to give me a chance. The rest happened really fast.
How do your friends react to your success? Another day I was trying to shop for some Christmas gifts for my family, when I saw my high school's best friend. Her name's Jenny and her nickname was Muffy. I looked at her and my reaction was to shout "Muffy!" She turned, looked at me and I think she took two minutes until she said something back. I held her really thigh, but I could see she was uncomfortable and really nervous. That ended up affecting me too. We've met in some other situations and her, among some other high school's friends, always tried to ignore me, treating me bad.
Maybe they were intimated by your fame? I don't know, it's a pretty crazy thing. In a situation, after I left my friend's room to go to the bathroom, I heard one of them asking "What do you think she eats?" (laughs). It's pretty crazy that after you spend so many time with these people at school and after that there's no connection. They believe you became a totally different person after the fame. It really bothers me, because I believe I've always been the same.
Talking about being thin, how do you keep fit? I love to eat, since I was a kid. I've always cooked everything. I see those women with amazing bodies and I think about how much discipline they have. I'm not one of those who goes to the gym and works out for one hour and eats in the right time every day. I love to work out, but with pleasure. I love to swim when there's a pool near me in New York. But I think it's important to keep the structure that it has been given to us. My father works out all the time, and look at his body! (laughs)
What were the main advices given by your parents when you first decided to become an actress? You just can't advice someone about those things. I've learned a lot being with them. Advices, never.
Who was your artistic inspiration? A lots of people. There are so many amazing actors, but me, particularly, never knew much about the movie industry. I wasn't that type who goes to the movies and, when I rented a movie, I always fell asleep in the middle of it. When I was invited for Stealing Beauty, I told my sister that I was going to meet some Mr. Bertolucci and she almost freaked out. "Oh my God, it's the director of The Last Tango In Paris!" I've never heard about him.
Is it easy to look at yourself at a movie? Of course not! I'm always super critic, because I can't even look at the screen as the same perspective as the others do. I'm always looking for failures and moments that I've should be better.
What are your favorite movies? That's hard! I change it all the time. There are sometimes that I'm going to rent an Elvis Presley movie and, in the next week, I'm looking for Fellini. Recently, I've seen in London "The Butcher's Boy", from Neil Jordan, which I loved. But "My Life As A Dog" is one of my favorites for all time.
Where do you live now? I bought an apartment in New York. When I'm in LA, I'm usually in hotels.
Are there any plans that you'll work with your father in a video clip? I don't know. I don't think so. I did Crazy and I'm on the Armageddon's video clip. I think that's enough. Those video clips are all the time on MTV and I feel kind of miserable when I watch them all the time.
How was the process to find out your real father's identity? It was something kind instinctive, because my mother, when she introduced us in a concert, she spent some more months hiding it from me. I guess I was solving the mystery by myself. When I met my half-sister (the plus-size model Mia Tyler), it was very easy for me to see that something was hidden. I looked at my father and I knew we had something in common.
Was that a time full of neuroses? Actually, it was full of joy! I was in such a connection with his daughters, my new sisters (laughs), and the fact of having three grandfathers and 200 aunts and uncles just helped me to have the easiest transition ever. It was such a joy that everything was right.
What are your plans for the future? Vacations and more vacations. I love to go shopping, to swim near my house, like 8:00 pm and relax in the sauna. These are my ambitions at this moment.
"Mommy, that's my father isn't it?" "Liv and I went to see an Aerosmith concert in august 1988. She was 11. We were the only ones who had access to the backstage and Steven took her to meet everybody. For the first time she met her sister, Mia. I noticed how she looked at Mia, in a really careful way. When Steven brought her back to get ready for the show, she asked me 'Mommy, why does he always cry every time he sees me?' In the middle of the show, she looked at Steven on stage. She saw Mia near it, gave a sigh and said: 'Mommy, that's my father, isn't it?' I smiled and cried at the same time... After the show, I told him 'Steven, she knows it.' He stared at me for some time, took a deep breath and said: 'Holy shit!'" (Bebe Buell)
"Maybe you've seen one of her movies" "It has been a long time since I wanted to recognize Liv's fatherhood. Finally, for the right reasons, I met her and her mother in New York and we did some blood tests to legalize it. When the results were ready, we held each other for a really long time and I offered her my name. 'Take it', I said to her, 'Liv Tyler'. Liv Tallarico was also great - I'm really proud of Tallarico - but Tyler has the power in our business. That's how she became Liv Tyler, when she was 14. One year later, she started working as a model and now she's an actress. Maybe you've seen one of her movies. She's amazing!" (Steven Tyler)