Rosario Dawson has been studying how to “crack-walk” all her life.
The actress plays prostitute and drug addict June Bailey in movie Gimme Shelter, which co-stars Vanessa Hudgens.
She joked it was easy to prepare for the role as she’s observed similar characters wandering the streets of New York City all her life.
“Well, you’ve got to get your crack-walk down. I live in New York, so I’ve been accidentally studying that for my whole life. It was really hard! She’s the exact opposite of me. She really is a victim of everything in her life and circumstance and doesn’t take any responsibility for anything,” Rosario joked to US edition of Elle magazine. “[I play Vanessa’s mother], her crack mom!”
Gimme Shelter is based on a true story and follows teenager Agnes ‘Apple’ Bailey [played by Vanessa] as she sets out to find her Wall Street father but is forced onto the streets in a desperate journey of survival.
Rosario says the hardest part of the role was letting go at the end of filming each day.
“You really have to embody that and believe it. It was difficult and painful. After filming, a whole 24 hours later, I was taking a shower and washing my face, and I realized I was grimacing,” she reflected. “It was hard to get that out of my system.”
Rosario is very close to her mother in real life. Making the film has left a lasting impression on her, and made her appreciate her upbringing even more.
“She was a teenage mom, and it was never that she regretted me, or any of those types of things, but that she didn’t have as many opportunities,” she added. “She’s always wanted me to try and go for things. Knowing that I have unconditional love is a huge thing. Working on Gimme Shelter [made me realize] how devastating it must be to have the person that brought you into this world not love you: That’s really harsh.”
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