Jessica Lowndes plays Adrianna Tate-Duncan on 90210, but she’s branching out in a big way. Now a recording artist and star of the horror thriller Altitude, Lowndes is working hard and smart.
Altitude’s the story of a group of friends flying to a concert, sucked in to a vortex of terror and the supernatural. Lowndes is the alpha dog of the group, responsible for them, smart and focused.
But what happens when a monster strikes? Monsters and Critics spoke with the 22 year old rising star.
You play an extremely capable woman who runs into some trouble, to say the least.
I play Sarah who is a young pilot who wants to fly her friends out of town to a concert. She was very prepared, that was instilled in young. Her mother who was also a pilot died when she was nine in a plane crash regardless, she takes them, but she wasn’t prepared for supernatural force ahead of them.
She was the one who carried the responsibility and because of that she felt guilt after things came to a head, when she realised what happened, and that she lost people close to her, she felt responsible. People put their trust in her hands.
It was like any situation in a plane when all the pressure is on the pilot’s shoulders, no matter what. It was definitely a challenging film. I took it seriously, and took flight lessons. It was very interesting to me, a thriller horror fantasy sci-fi, based on a comic.
How did you manage all the heightened situations?
The first time I opened the script I was terrified. I got the offer and I love the directors and Marvel and knew visually it would look cool. And we would shoot in my home town of Vancouver. But the role scared me.
I have never had to say these words in my life, but II took flight lessons and he less scary it got. It became second nature. It was crazy; I couldn’t believe the information that was in my brain.
You shot in a small plane cockpit – for 22 days you and the cast couldn’t stand up!
Usually when I’m filming, you’re able to stand and walk and look people in the eye. My character is looking straight ahead; she has no eye contact when she’s taking to people. It makes it look convincing.
There was a camera in my face and the craft service guy would be walking by with sandwiches and I’d have to convince people that what was going on was real. It was intense and a very tight space for the five of us and the director and director of photography and the camera. It was cosy! We got to know each other very well.
How was it with that non stop dramatic tension?
It was challenging because the whole movie takes place in one day. Every day we had to match the emotional intensity and there was a little romance but there was all this drama happening.
And to keep it interesting there was a love triangle. It was very emotional. My eyes were still puffy a month later because I was crying so much.
How did you ramp it up for those scenes?
It’s hard. I actually love crying scenes, they’re therapeutic. I love going there. A film like this is on a different level of emotion, it’s how you do it.
The first incident happens and you’re devastated and the second happens and its challenging but you have to go to a place where you are not scared.
Are you back on 90210 this season?
I am back! My character has dropped out of high school to pursue her music career. I was recording an album on my own and with the hip hop artist Ironic, singing my own songs so I felt blessed to sing on the show.
They were so accomodating. I really have a lot of fun on the show, always have had. Some things have been a little out of my comfort zone this year but I relate to my character in some capacity or another, I mean I haven’t been blackmailed but I relate!
What about pursuing your music?
I made my album during the last hiatus. I have about 3 months free and spent time recording and I opened for Robin Thicke on some shows. My single is out in the UK. It’s the coolest thing ever! It got a million hits on YouTube in the first week!
You were featured on IMDb for its 20th anniversary celebrations front page. Did that give you a bit of a bump?
It was very, very fun I loved it, but thought it was a mix up “Are you sure they want me?” I was very excited and it wasn’t a mix-up.
What kinds of roles do you want to do?
There are so many! A romantic comedy would be great and give my puffy eyes a little break. I would love to do a period piece, something very emotionally challenging and physically challenging. I love totally getting into character.
There are so many different things I’d love to do, like voiceovers for Disney. I want to do my music too. One day I’d love to do Broadway!
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