Kelly Carlson: Putting the Mmmmmm... in 'The Marine'

When you make a movie about a former Marine's attempt to rescue his lava-hot wife from a gang of baddies, naturally you need a lava-hot woman. Enter Kelly Carlson. The super-fit blonde bombshell plays Kate Triton, the spouse of WWE Champion John Cena's character, John Triton, in The Marine, which opens Friday nationwide.

You probably recognize Kelly's face, and other more intimate body parts, from her work on FX's Nip/Tuck where she stars as the scene-stealing Kimber Henry. From a stunningly graphic sex scene in show's pilot episode (did someone leave the, uh, backdoor open?) to running an adult entertainment business to being stalked by a serial killer, Kimber's been through it all.

And from the sounds of it, Kelly Carlson's been through quite a bit herself -- like a near bar brawl with Cena, Filipino street-fighting and ghosts. Yeah, ghosts. Read on.

So what was it like being John Cena's wife in The Marine?
Working with John was really easy. He's very laid back. He's a very kind person. He listens to direction. He's just a really, really nice guy. If he didn't understand something, he had no problem asking what to do. And I like that. There's no attitude.

Your love scene with John in The Marine wasn't quite as graphic as your infamous Nip/Tuck debut in the series premiere… How and where do you rank John in your list of fictional lovers?
[Laughs] A 10! No performance anxiety.

Describe locking lips with the WWE Champion.
It's like kissing a big strong man! It's good. We did the screen kiss… We weren't, like, tonguing each other.

Screen kiss? Explain that to us "screen kiss" virgins. Slowly… and in great detail.
A screen kiss is the bare minimum type of kiss while making it look like more. You have to be respectful that people have spouses, you know?

Oh, no wonder we're "screen kiss" virgins. So, did John practice any wrestling moves with you for your fight scenes… or for your love scene, for that matter?
[Starts laughing to herself] No, he didn't show me any wrestling moves, but we were all out one night and this one woman picked a fight with me. And I'm kind of a scrapper… I didn't even do anything. She was just really drunk and pushed me or something and I was just ready to attack -- when John stepped in the middle and said [in a masculine voice], "You can't do this, Kelly. You're much stronger and you're going to hurt somebody. Just take a step back and calm yourself down." And I thought, "What?! You're a wrestler! Come on, let's get into it!"

In The Marine, you get to throw down with Abigail Bianca and look damn good doing it… Where did you learn to kick ass and take names?
I took Filipino martial arts for years -- kali to be exact. Kickboxing. And I don't mean exercise kickboxing, I mean Filipino street-fighting kickboxing with grappling -- arnis, silat -- all types of fighting; fighting with sticks, knives... So, my coordination is pretty good. I'm by no means a professional fighter, but I have a step up because I took kali for so long. Few women take kali.

And what's a nice girl like you doing getting involved in Filipino street-fighting?
My dad was an athlete. He was always concerned with me protecting myself. I was his only daughter; the only child. He would sort of teach me how to fight a little bit, at least to not be a victim. It's a great way to take out your aggression and also how to control it. Fighting is not just going nuts on someone, it's controlling your energy. It teaches you discipline which I really liked. I think I could get myself out of a bad situation if I had to.

Talk about bad situations, is it true you did all of your own stunts in The Marine?
I did. I wanted to at least try it. There was one I couldn't do. It's when the truck goes through the barn and crashes in the water, but I did all of the truck stuff on fire and all of my own fighting and I loved it. I want to do more action movies.

So are there any similarities between Kate Triton and Kimber Henry?
No. Not really. Kate would NOT be friends with Kimber.

Any similarities between Kate Triton and Kelly Carlson?
Yeah. I'm similar to both of them [Kate Triton and Kimber Henry]. I'm a very supportive person and I think I'm a very kind person. That's how I would relate to Kate. But with Kimber? Kimber's my wild side. My voyeuristic side. I'm both -- whoever I feel like being that day. [Laughs]

Any viewer of Nip/Tuck knows Kimber Henry was neck deep in the world of adult entertainment... What's your own relationship with the, uh, hard stuff?
[Laughs] They wanted me to be sort of like a Jenna Jameson… A girl who is in the adult industry, but makes her own decisions and I was really happy to learn that. Jenna Jameson's E! True Hollywood Story I loved. It's very inspiring, actually. I really like her.

I hope for her sake that people can evolve a little bit and understand that a lot of these women just do what they love to do -- which most men love to do. They're not victims. I know there are some out there, but a lot of these women aren't victims. They're good at what they do.

It's a huge industry. They're making money. And they're in control. They make those decisions and that's the best part about it. No one's forcing them. They're not whacked out on drugs. It's what they like to do. All of them have a different journey and you shouldn't be judgmental. I think more women in this world would be happier if they liked their bodies a little bit more.

There's nothing wrong with sex. There's nothing wrong with liking your body. I think instead of being repelled by it [adult entertainment], if you just stopped and maybe use it as a learning tool in your own private life, it can be constructive. It makes for a better relationship when you aren't intimidated and you don't think it's gross. It's something that you can share privately with your partner. I think that's a special thing.

Well, in Nip/Tuck, Kimber is dealing with a twisted serial killer and his philosophy  that "beauty is a curse on the world." You're both beautiful and famous now… Do you ever feel cursed for it?
No. No way. I like being pretty. I'm certainly not the most beautiful woman in the world at all -- it's all in the eye of the beholder. But I like myself a lot… I don't think about it that much.

And speaking of curses… Word is you grew up with ghosts. Are you still being haunted?
I actually did have something recently. It kind of goes in cycles. I recently had a candle go flying and broke a glass vase. I was in my house. I was just walking by. It was almost like it was timed. It was right when I stepped across from it, it just went SHOOM -- it just went flying and crashed. But then I got mad. I've grown up with ghosts my whole life. I've seen them. Other people have seen them. They've done crazy things. I know it sounds bizarre, but it's true. I get angry when they ruin my things. And I was REALLY mad because it was my crystal vase.

Does it freak you out at all?
Mmmhmmm. Still does. I'm much more used to it than when I was a kid. It tortured me growing up. I was horrified because for a long time no one believed me. They thought I was a little crazy; my parents at first. I went to Catholic school, so THEY thought I was a little bananas. Then it took my family being there a lot, my cousins and stuff, and them experiencing it. When people would stay at my house for a couple of days at a time, they'd be like, "Hey. Whoa, wait a second…" My girlfriends have all experienced it. And now my friends who would never be believers and are indifferent about it say, "Wow. Ok. We thought you were maybe exaggerating, but that was -- excuse my language --
f***ed up!"

Has any boyfriend gone running and screaming away from you after one of these incidents?
More than once. My ex-boyfriend Joe I was with from age 12 to 22 used to make fun of me because I would tell him about my experiences and he'd think I was bananas. So, we would be growing up and he would be spending more time at my house and they [the ghosts] would always turn off the TV. He'd turn it on. They'd turn it off. Or else we would be downstairs and they would be rattling the plates or throwing the forks. He was just like, "This is CRAZY. What is this?"

My dad used to give me a hard time about it because my dad was very much a concrete, sequential thinker. He was an educator and more into science. He used to kind of make fun of me. Then was a little concerned and we went through the motions… And when he was dying, [starts laughing] I was like, now listen -- you better come see me! And he said, "I'm really sorry I gave you such a hard time about it." But I have NEVER seen my dad. [More laughter, thinking out loud] Why do I see everybody else's dad but you?

I wonder… I usually see men. I rarely see women. I've experienced children, but I always see men. It's always a masculine person. And I always wonder -- that's somebody's family member and like, who is thinking they're in heaven, but they're in my bedroom.

And if there is no heaven, what's so wrong about ending up in Kelly Carlson's bedroom? Sign us up!


Kelly speaks after the world premiere of The Marine

The Marine premiere at Camp Pendleton

The official site of The Marine

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