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‘Premonition’s’ Sandra Bullock Goes With Her Gut Instincts

Hollywood.com had a very eerie, nagging feeling that Sandra Bullock would have a lot of interesting things to say about her new psychological thriller Premonition. And then she did. Weird, huh?

Hollywood.com: Have you ever had a premonition, one that’s come true?
Sandra Bullock:
I have pretty good gut instincts. My mother had extraordinary intuition. Extraordinary. I think everyone has it. I don’t think we are raised to embrace it. I really don’t. I have had things tell me not to do something and then I’ve done it and paid for it and listened. I’ve had dreams going, “What does that mean?” And then the dream, what the essence of what it was happened. And I think that happens to everyone. Is that intuition, is that premonition, is that coincidence? I don’t know. But I do know that there are times that I’ve asked for something and I’ve seen it and I look up and go, “That’s awesome.” To me, that is beyond my control, so I appreciate any help I can get–whether it’s the voices in my head or it’s a neighbor, I appreciate it.

HW: If you were to actually have a premonition that something bad would happen, would your husband believe you, and not take that trip, or get in that car…
SB:
Absolutely. Absolutely, absolutely.

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HW: Without hesitation?
SB:
Without hesitation. I’m not one to overreact, to react without reason. And there’s been enough stuff where I’ve said, “I don’t feel right,” and then something’s sort of happened. But I think everyone has it—I’m not…I have pretty good gut instincts. Your body tells you.

HW: So do you believe in any sort of supernatural element?
SB:
I don’t think we are the only planet that has life. I do think there is something to human nature, if you want to call it intuitiveness, gut instinct. People who know things that have happened. It’s happened to a lot of people. But I always put it back into this, they call it, how you just put it, it’s almost like it becomes a scientific thing. No one has proof that I know of, that a higher power exists, yet a major portion of the world believes in it and relies on it in faith in trust, in what that is. Where is the science in that? And yet you have incredible belief in that. So, when someone says to me, “I’ve had a bad feeling that something is going to happen and then it did.” I don’t know how to explain it. It can’t be explained by science, but I believe in that happening. I think there is something bigger than we understand, but I don’t think it’s supported and nurtured in people. I think people think you are crazy and unless it can be proved by science, it’s not valid. But I do believe. Twins have it. Twins know what’s happened to each other.

HW: You’ve said that you endured some difficult times living inside your character’s extreme emotional state of grief, confusion, etc.
SB:
I had a really hard time. And I take great pleasure in saying I thought I was going to lose it. And I went to the director and said, “I’m having a hard time. I don’t know what to do.” And the smile on his face when he heard that, “No, that’s exactly where you need to be.” And I was like, “No, it’s not.” But, I loved working with this director and understood completely the method to his madness that in my unraveling, in this little bubble that we had for three months, I felt like, “OK, I’m gonna be fine.” It’s just a hard thing to put yourself in a state of grief like that for three months and not think you’re gonna cough up some of your own stuff. It’s not healthy, but it was exciting to think, I hope at the end, that he got what he needed. We played the levels right. It was getting the levels right. Is she just pure grief here? When does the grief go into denial and anger?

HW: Have you ever been through that on a film before?
SB:
On different levels, yeah. I will make myself sick on films, just because you want everything to be right. I can’t sleep if something hasn’t been done or is out of place. And if I am producing it as well, it gets even worse. And that’s why I know myself well enough to take time in between before I produce and am in something again. It’s got to be a long time. It just takes a lot out of me. But why do it unless you are going to do it like that? I have had different hard times, but never anything like this. Because you put yourself in a state where your love has died and your life is out of order and you don’t know what happened. In that kind of grieving I think anyone would just sort of want to go to therapy, but that basically was therapy.

HW: How has being married recently helped in playing a role like this?
SB:
Y’know, every relationship is different. There are good marriages, bad marriages, connected partners, unconnected partners. Being married hasn’t changed how I would have approached it, but thinking for three months not being married, what if my husband was killed it put me in a bad place. It put me in a really bad place. Sometimes, all couples will tell you, “I wanna kill ya. I wanna kill ya.” But, I’d never want that to actually happen, because in five minutes I’m going to love you a lot. It put me in a place, but not because I was married, but because it was the subject matter of the film. And how I was trained, I can’t pretend like something, if I don’t feel it. I can’t act it. Same in comedy. Sandy has to feel it. It’s not the way Sandy would do it. It’s not Sandy’s situation, but I’ve got to find my [way] as if to get me to that place and that’s all I know. I can’t lie on the floor and fry like bacon Stanislavski style. I’ll never be cast as a bacon piece. I can’t imagine what that would be. “I know! I see you more as an egg girl.”[Laughs.] But that was just how I was trained and what I know and that’s what I relied on.

HW: Do you believe that things are fated to turn out a certain way, or that people have control of their own fate?
SB:
I don’t know about the word, I think the word is just a hard word to say, “Do you believe in fate?” And then you can argue it and discount it, but I can look at my life and look at all the things that have happened and go, “Ah, I now see why A, B and C happened and I understand why I had to go through that, because here I sit.” But I do believe that rebirth and when have things have finished their time. I mean for me to get through life and go, “What’s the purpose?” When someone passes away I hope there is a really good reason for it, because it’s there to give birth to something else. Because of this event hasn’t happened and gone away, this couldn’t have begun. And that is what I loved about this film is that it was bittersweet, that if one thing didn’t happen the next thing that was supposed to begin in this world couldn’t have arrived. Call it fate, call it whatever it is. But I do think we have a good amount of control of what our life can be. It’s up to us to make our life happy and joyful and what it is supposed to be for us. I think there is a level of control in that fated end, whatever you want it to be. I can only come from my point-of-view and that was it and that will probably change tomorrow based on what I learn today.

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