Halle Berry & Benicio Del Toro
Halle's found love with Canadian model Gabriel Aubry. And she recently announced that, at 41, she's pregnant!
What did Halle do when she passed the test? "While I was trying to get pregnant, we tried really hard, so it was a lot of staying home and just doing what you do. ... I was watching a lot of [daytime] television and—don't judge me for this—Maury Povich. ... It was about, 'You are the father. You're not the father.' ... So what the women do when they find out he's not the daddy, they run off the stage, right? They run to the back. I don't know why, but they run to the back.
"So when we got the positive test—Gabriel was downstairs in the den—I ran upstairs! I got up there, and I thought, 'I've been watching too much Maury!"
Then while on a fashion shoot for a Versace ad, Halle met Gabriel, which made finishing the shoot difficult. "There were, like, just pheromones flying off the walls," she says.
Halle says she loves that Gabriel has so much integrity. "He does what he says he's going to do. He's very honest. I've learned to really appreciate honesty, even when you're saying what I don't want to hear, because it's the truth. I think I used to like hearing what I wanted to hear, and not necessarily the truth," she says. "He's always his authentic self, never worried about being judged. He doesn't care what anybody thinks of who he is. To walk with that kind of confidence, ... and with integrity, I know he has ability to love me, love our children, and he will do that."
"You said children—not child," Oprah says.
"Well, there's just one right now," Halle says. "But we're hoping right after this one to do it again."
"What Gabriel and I have decided is we will just redefine marriage for ourselves. You know, that paper isn't worth anything to me anymore. ... I don't want to do that again, so we have spent a lot of time talking about how can we redefine this. There's all kinds of ways to commit to one another that doesn't have to involve the government," Halle says. "I feel more married in a way than I ever have in two marriages before."
Oprah says that is a spiritual partnership. "Which is, by Gary Zukav's definition, a partnership between equals for the purpose of spiritual growth."
"We view life the same way," Halle says. "He really understands the spiritual connection is so much more important than the paper and the pomp and the circumstance and the ceremony. And that feels important to us."
Apart from the gripping script and opportunity to work with Benicio, Halle says she was excited by the chance to work with the film's director, Susanne Bier. "I always love working with strong women," she says.
"I think it validated that I was meant to be a mother, because every day I dealt with the character as a mother and thinking as a mother—and not having any children, that was a big leap for me," she says. "I haven't really played a mother, a loving, caring mother like this woman was. So it let me know that I must be a mother. It also reminded me that no matter what hardship we go through in life, we always will come out on the other side."
Despite her stellar performance, Halle says she had to convince the moviemakers to consider her for the role. "I think they were pretty set on David Duchovny playing the father. And if it were me then what would this be, interracial? What would the kids be?" Halle says. "And for me, that's my life. So for me, it was a no-brainer—I'm the product of that. So I thought they'd be like me, and what's wrong with that? ... But the beauty of it is, it's not mentioned in the movie at all ... because it doesn't matter."
Working with Benicio was one of the biggest reasons Halle wanted this role. "For about at least five years before we had this chance to work together, people would always say, 'Who do you want to work with?' And I would always say, 'Benicio Del Toro,'" she says, "never really imagining how that would happen or if it would come to pass."
What does Benicio think about the reputation that precedes him? "Don't believe everything you read," he says.
To play a heroin addict, Benicio did his homework. "I sat with people who know about addicts and addiction. I sat down with a doctor," he says. "And I read. I read literature about it, and I learned about it. And through it I try to bring, inasmuch as I learn, into the character."
Even though he's known for how he plays intense characters in movies, Benicio says he isn't the kind of actor who stays in character when the camera stops. "You always have to come back. I think there's a saying by the Coast Guard that says, 'You have to go out, but you don't have to come back.' And I used to say that a lot. You have to come back. Otherwise you're not going to be able to work the next day.
"When you make movies, it's teamwork. You can't really be in your own world all the time or you'll drive people crazy. You have to be open to the actors you're working with, to the director, to the makeup people, everybody. You can't be like a rock of emotions, just waiting to do it in front of the camera. You have to be able to communicate and be there for the people, working with other people."
Halle says Benicio, for all his brooding reputation, is the comic relief on set. "When you work on a movie that has the gravity of this movie, you need someone to lighten it up," she says. "He had a wonderful way of just making us all smile or finding the light touch in every scene, because every scene can't be heavy and downtrodden."
"I tell you, it is worth seeing just to see the two of you on screen together," Oprah says.