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Ben Affleck wanted only one woman to play the role of “Graciela Corrales” in his gangster film Live By Night – actress Zoe Saldana.

“I’ve seen your work and what I’ve seen I like,” Saldana recalls Affleck telling her on the phone. “That was very inspiring to me and it humbled me.”

Saldana’s character plays Affleck’s spouse and close ally to his bevy of criminal enterprises. Set in the 1920s, Saldana was initially hesitant to be involved in a period piece.

But Affleck won her over.

“He was such a great example of how to multi-task…and maintain a cool attitude and collaborate with all of your colleagues and be super-creative,” Saldana says of how Affleck performed in his roles as lead actor, director and writer. “It was a fantastic environment, a great experience.”

Saldana also reflected to Entertainment Studios’ Jon Kelley about her career and why she has been drawn to roles in several Sci-Fi films.

“I’ve been driven by science fiction [roles] because I feel that out there I can be multi-dimensional,” Saldana said. “I can be very chameleon. I don’t have to be type-casted by my gender, by my skin color, by my culture. I don’t have to be defined in all these boxes. I get to be free. I get to save the day. I don’t get to be a serviceable character.”

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