Given that she’s gone tête-à-tête with some of the hottest actors in the biz—including Colin Farrell, Denzel Washington, Johnny Depp and Josh Hartnett—one would hope that actress Radha Mitchell would be the type to kiss and tell. But when asked to name her favorite male co-star, the 34-year-old Melbourne native only laughs and exclaims, “That’s like asking, ‘Who’s your best friend?’ Everybody brings something different out of you.” Demureness aside, Mitchell, who next appears alongside Jonathan Rhys Meyers in The Children of Huang Shi, out May 23, is making a name for herself by holding her own against some of Hollywood’s biggest hunks.
CHINA DOLL: During the two-and-a-half month shoot in northern China, Mitchell, who plays a junkie nurse-cum-love interest, says she relied on “a lot of sign language” to communicate with the predominantly Chinese cast and crew. Based on actual events, the film tells the story of British photojournalist George Hogg (Meyers), who led a group of war orphans on a harrowing journey out of Japanese-occupied China in the late Thirties.
MODEL GENES: “[Modeling] was in my blood,” says the actress, whose mother is a former mannequin and fashion designer. By age 13, the stunner had scored a gig posing for an Australia-based adventure catalogue. In fact, it was through her modeling agency that she auditioned and ultimately landed her first acting role at age 15 in the Aussie TV series Sugar and Spice, after which she abandoned modeling.
RED-CARPET WOES: “It’s a pain in the ass,” Mitchell claims about dressing for Hollywood events. “I mean, it can be fun, if somebody sends you a dress….But it’s always a little like a performance.” The Los Angeles-based actress prefers cozy caftans or jeans and Ts if she’s not working.
This story first appeared in the March 24, 2008 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
UP NEXT: Henry Poole Is Here, a comedy out this summer, finds Mitchell playing love interest to yet another silver screen hottie—Luke Wilson.