The Canadian-American actress of Croatian origin, Stana Katic (39), has again proven that she enjoys playing tough but fair women. For eight years she was a television audience favorite as Kate Beckett in the series “Castle”, but in mid-2016 she left the TV show and went on a vacation, looking forward to new challenges. She soon returned to the small screens, and again as a guard of public order.
In the mini-series “Absentia”, which is shown in Croatia on cable television channel AXN Adria, she plays an FBI agent Emily Byrne. After thinking for six years she was the victim of a serial killer, who was sentenced to prison for her murder, Emily was found in a remote forest cabin. She doesn’t remember who held her captive there, or what was happening in all these years, and returning home is even harder – her husband is living with a new wife, and her son does not accept her.
“I’m not bad when I need to play a tough woman. Before the new role I practiced karate so I know how to hit well when it’s needed. Also, for years I danced ballet and I love when I can express myself with movement, whether it is in the scene of fighting, dancing, or in the way I walk” – says Stana Katic, who in the first episode brutally beats a criminal. Shooting ten episodes of “Absentia” was particularly difficult due to short deadlines. Sometimes she would record a scene from three different episodes on the same day.
“The hardest scene to shoot was the one where Emily wants to escape and jumps into the lake and swims across to the other side. That day the water was freezing. The director and the producers even doubted whether we should shoot. I was well prepared, I wore a diving suit first, and then the clothes that Emily was wearing, but it wasn’t easy for me. I didn’t know how my body would react. Luckily, even though it was really cold, everything went smoothly. This scene may be my favorite in the series as it best describes how Emily faces danger, which could happen to be fatal. But she did not want to give up at any moment” says Stana Katic, an executive producer of the series.
The shoot was so difficult so she hopes her next employment would be in a comedy. She also hopes for a few free months so she can dedicate herself to married life… Just one day before her 37th birthday, on April 25, 2015, she married longtime boyfriend, an Australian businessman of Serbian origin Kris Brklja?. They got married in the idyllic Orthodox monastery Dragovi?, which was built near the Peru?a Lake in the late 14th century, with which the actress showed how much she loves her parent’s homeland.
As the oldest of the six children in the family of Petar and Rada Kati?, the owner of a furniture shop, Stana always loved to point out that her father was from Koljane near Vrlika, and her mother from the area of Sinj. Before her birth, her parents migrated to Canada, in the town of Hamilton, and when she was five years old, her family moved to the American city of Aurora near Chicago. But even though she grew up in North America, she never forgot the Cetina region. “I got there, for the first time, as a five-year-old, and in recent years I try to visit Croatia at least once a year. This spring I even tried to learn how to make as many traditional dishes as possible. I visited friends and family and I begged them to introduce me with people who still cook in the old fashioned way. I’ve learned a lot, but my favorites are still blitva, pura and asparagus with eggs… I know they are simple old fashioned meals, but I love them. Recipes are not complicated, but you need to have fresh, well-chosen ingredients for real enjoyment. Last summer I asked for corn flour milled in a stone mill, and the most delicious asparagus grow on my cousin’s estate in Dalmatia. I love blitva so much that I planted it in my garden in California. And, of course, I love peka. I’m particularly proud of the fact that I learned to bake bread under peka (over hot ashes)” says a charming green-eyed beauty who starred in James Bond “Quantum of Solace” movie, in ” The Double” her partner was Richard Gere, and in “Big Sur” she played the poet Lenore Kandel.
She often shows her love for the Cetina region in photos on her Instagram profile. The fact that she’s well informed about the events here and show them on social media, in light of the announced construction of the Thermal Power Plant Peru?a, she says she hopes that pure water will remain for future generations as well. With her visits, her Croatian is getting better, but she still speaks English in official conversations. “I understand everything and everyone understands me. Problems happen when I start talking about something beyond everyday life, for example about economic or medical topics. At that time, it is sometimes difficult to find the right word” says Stana, who used the last trip to Dalmatia to enrich her vocabulary. “I was interested in the difference between the word “plemenit” (noble) and “mudrost” (wisdom). For two months I was asking my friends and acquaintances which word describes them the best. Without exception, they chose “noble” and this is my favorite Croatian word” says the actress, who is always glamorously dressed and polished at the Hollywood premieres.
But in private, she is completely different. When she does not shoot anything, she does not make any makeup, because she says, lipstick does not help too much as she’s digging in her garden. She appreciates minimalism even more in her wardrobe. “In my wardrobe I only have what I need. I like to have a few carefully picked pieces that fit me well, rather than a bunch of good clothes in which I get lost. Of course, sometimes I buy something without thinking too much. On a recent trip to Japan I was thrilled with fabrics and dresses that defy trends and can be worn today, but also for ten years. I’m constantly hunting on such occasions” says the actress who maintains the perfect line with regular runs, doing yoga and riding a bicycle.
When you ask her, which is her real face – the “tough” Stana from the small screen or the “glamorous” red carpet one- with a big charming smile she replies: “None of those two. If you were to ask my friends, I believe they would answer that the real Stana is – a goofy nerd.”
Thanks to Stana Katic Croatia for the translation!