Interview: Olivia Wilde Produces Baseball in the Time of Cholera

When Olivia Wilde comes into the studio, and sits down, her light-green cat’s eyes settle on you with a steady gaze and a mix of curiosity, intelligence, and sensuality. When she speaks about the people of Haiti, her face flushes with tenderness. Her voice is low, measured, and always just a moment away from a throaty laugh. She goes to Haiti often, despite its current cholera epidemic, and is planning another trip shortly after our talk.

Olivia’s career is in a thrilling “Wilde brush fire” phase. After roles on The O.C. and The Black Donellys, she was chosen to play the character nicknamed “13” on HOUSE, opposite Hugh Laurie, starred in Cowboys & Aliens with Daniel Craig and Harrison Ford, TRON: Legacy with Jeff Bridges and Michael Sheen, and currently has six films in post-production. Wilde truly loves Haiti, believes in the cause she speaks for and lends her whole self, not just, as many celebrities do, her name. Her beauty is complete, both inner and outer.

Olivia has teamed up with friends and fellow visionaries David Darg and Bryn Mooser to produce their film, Baseball in the Time of Cholera. What started out as a film about Haiti’s first little league team, a small and personal story, soon took on international importance as a cholera epidemic quickly infected over 500,000 Haitian people.

And the story became even larger. At first it was uncertain what was causing the deadly and quickly spreading illness — Haiti had never before suffered from cholera — but it soon came to light that the Nepalese troops with the UN peacekeeping force had allegedly been dumping their sewage into the largest river in Haiti.

The irony is starkly painful: the UN has a budget of $800 million to help keep peace in a country that hasn’t seen a war in over 50 years, but it is widely believed that as a direct result of the UN’s actions, thousands of innocent civilians are now dying from a cholera outbreak.

The film begins on an intimate level, showing us Haiti’s first little league team. We see the excitement of the boys, the happiness on their beautiful faces, and a genuine love of the game, just like little boys all over the world. But before long, the innocence of a child’s love of sports is interrupted by the only outbreak of cholera Haiti has ever seen. And very quickly, it is rampant and dire. The victims are living by a huge river, but none of it is safe to ingest, and these people are literally dying of thirst. It is tragically reminiscent of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner: “Water, water, everywhere, but not a drop to drink.”

When the film begins, we meet our 14 year-old baseball team pitcher Joseph, who says proudly, “I love my life,” a statement he’s so passionate about that he has actually written it on his wall. Surprising news, given that he’s taking us on a tour of the tent he lives in with 11 other people, with a single cement latrine, ever since the earthquake. Joseph is happily displaying for us why his life is beautiful, and the reason is that he still has the people he loves most around him: his parents, and sisters, Cindy and Lovely.

Eventually there comes a moment in the film where we see that Joseph’s face has changed entirely. His mother has died violently, and in a matter of days, of cholera. And, immediately, we know two things: the first is that even though he’s only 14, he’s no longer a boy; his childhood has ended abruptly and forever. And the second thing we know is that he may never write down the phrase “I love my life” again. Or at least not for very long time. It’s absolutely devastating.

As Joseph, who is technically still a child, (his favorite object is a little baseball statuette from Toronto) talks about how much he knows his mother loved him, and how hard she worked making jewelry to keep their family afloat, his grief overtakes him. And even though he’s trying so bravely to hold them back, he gives in to hardened sobs, right there in front of the camera. It’s impossible to watch, and not sit there and cry with him.

There is an enormous lawsuit led by human rights lawyer Mario Joseph against the UN for their alleged responsibility in the cholera outbreak for hundreds of thousands of Haitian victims. But how do you make reparations to the dead?

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Olivia Wilde Switches Roles & Talks Baseball With Ben Lyons

Olivia Wilde has a stunning face that is recognizable wherever she goes. Emerging on the scene originally as an actress/fashion model, most people are used to seeing her front and center.

But Olivia has been gradually switching gears, taking on a new role behind the scenes as a producer/filmmaker.

Creating a lot of buzz at Tribeca’s Film Festival for her production in her second documentary Baseball In The Time of Cholera, this seems to be another role that is fitting Olivia quite well.

Last year, she produced a documentary close to her heart, Sun City Picture House, which follows a young Haitian Man trying to pursue what he loves after the destruction of the earthquake.

But this year, Olivia expresses that this documentary is more so of “a call to action” as opposed to just a documentation, as it shows how cholera arrived in Haiti through the UN Mission. It is also a personal story about a little league pitcher who’s contracted the disease and how it’s affected him.

GlobalGrind’s Ben Lyons spoke with Olivia in depth about the documentary and how much it really means to her.

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Face Time | Olivia Wilde

For me, the highlight of the Tribeca Film Festival was making up the lovely Olivia Wilde for the premiere of the documentary she produced, “Baseball in the Time of Cholera.” It follows the effects of a cholera outbreak on a young Haitian athlete named Joseph and the scandal surrounding the United Nation’s involvement in the affair. It was a special evening for her because it’s a film she is very proud of. You may have caught a glimpse of her looking gorgeous in Revlon’s latest ads. Between blush and mascara, Wilde and I chatted about what it’s like to be a global brand ambassador for Revlon and much more.

T.T.: Of the makeup looks you’ve sported for Revlon so far, is there one you are especially fond of?

O.W.: Yes! The Gucci Westman summer collection shoot was really fun. I got to be a sort of tropical, colorful and bronzed version of myself, which made me excited about summer. I really loved the color combination Gucci came up with: a teal eye shadow and a coral lipstick, colors I find difficult to combine on my own. They’re bold and exotic. I’m looking forward to experimenting and having fun with the collection.

T.T.: Is there a Revlon product you have fallen in love with?

O.W.: I use the PhotoReady Foundation almost every day, and their lip glosses are fantastic.

T.T.: What does your typical daytime makeup consist of?

O.W.: Usually for daytime, I mix Revlon Colorstay or PhotoReady Foundation with a little moisturizer for a lighter look, while still evening out my skin tone. I use a concealer like YSL Touche Eclat. For a more affordable highlighter, the Revlon Eye Brightener works really well. I’ve been using the new Revlon Lip Butters on my lips; they’re so moisturizing.

T.T.: Do you have a favorite face cleanser?

O.W.: I always use Cetaphil cleanser. I also like their moisturizer.

T.T.: I notice you have gone much blonder. Who does your color?

O.W.: I go to Sally Hershberger. I am really enjoying being a blonde! And I’ve also been letting my bangs grow out.

T.T.: What hair-care products are you using?

O.W.: Since the color, my hair has been a little dryer, so I have to kick it up a notch in terms of hair care. I recently discovered the Shu Uemura Moisture Line, which is excellent. They sell it at Sally Hershberger’s salon. I use the moisturizing shampoo and conditioner, and the hair mask has been a lifesaver since I went blond — it’s great!

T.T.: What is your favorite fragrance?

O.W.: Every time someone asks me this, it’s the longest one to answer, because I’m so into fragrance. Believe it or not, I’m a big fan of patchouli oil. I know it’s not a universally liked fragrance. I usually combine it with other essential oils — I have many mixtures I like.

T.T.: Your eyebrows always look striking: perfect frames for your beautiful eyes. Do you have any brow tips or tricks you can share?

O.W.: I do not tweeze my eyebrows. I’ve been letting them grow out for years. I try to fill them in wherever nature has abandoned me. I’ve been going for a slightly lighter shade of brow color lately, with my lighter hair. I just fill in under the arch and soften them up a bit. My natural brows are quite pointy. I soften them so I look less like some evil Disney queen!

T.T.: When you’re filming and getting a full face of makeup on a daily basis, is there a regimen you follow to keep your skin healthy?

O.W.: If I have time, I’ll go for an occasional facial. If not, I just make sure to remove the makeup thoroughly at the end of the day. I usually wash my face twice. First, to remove all the makeup, and then again to really give my face a good scrub. I like to get it clean at the end of a workday on set, using a good hot towel. When I don’t have to wear makeup, I don’t, in order to give my skin a rest.

T.T.: To stay in shape, are you more of a yoga person or a hiker/runner?

O.W.: I’m more of a yoga/hiker, take out the runner! Actually, I’m going to run on May 5 for the Revlon Run/Walk for Women. I think I will walk, because if you run you can’t talk to people! Emma Stone and I were chatting the other night, and she said, “Are you going to run? I’m not going to run!” We’ll both be pulling up the rear. But yeah, I love yoga and hiking — I think that’s the perfect combo.

T.T.: What foods do you include in your diet on a regular basis?

O.W.: Well, I’m one of those weird people who actually loves healthy foods! For instance, I love kale. It’s like a treat for me. I’m lucky that my palate lends itself to healthy food.

T.T.: What is on your feet most: sneakers, flats, boots or heels?

O.W. Sneakers. I wear Converse every day.

T.T.: When it comes to your wardrobe, are there certain designers you lean toward?

O.W.: Depending on the occasion, I’ll go with very different designers. To go out at night and to feel really fashionably fabulous, I love Gucci. And if I were going to more of a work or business-chic kind of thing, I really love Helmut Lang. For daytime I go for Isabel Marant.

T.T.: Is there a certain type of jewelry you like?

O.W.: I really like organic-looking jewelry. I go through phases of enjoying different shades and metals. I’m more into silvers these days. I love all metals, though, and have a soft spot for hammered metal jewelry. I’m not so into colored stones. I like things that are very simple — it’s the same with my taste in flower arrangements. I don’t like lots of colors grouped together. I like one simple color, and one simple flower.

T.T.: When you have been working hard, do you have a favorite way to relax and unwind?

O.W.: I’m always revitalized when I get back to New York after a job. If I could work here all the time, that would be a dream come true. Working or not, it’s always good to come to New York for inspiration, as it provides a good dose of energy and culture. That said, I am dying to escape to somewhere tropical soon!

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David Darg, Bryn Mooser And Olivia Wilde Of ‘Baseball In The Time Of Cholera’

David Darg and Bryn Mooser are busy guys. Not only are they active aide workers in Haiti, continuing in the effort to restore the country after the devastating 2010 earthquake, but with the help of executive producer Olivia Wilde, they’re busy spreading the word through short films, too.

At first, the trio wanted to focus their Sun City Picture House follow-up on the rise of a local little league baseball team they started, but in the midst of that, one of the young player’s mother’s life was taken by the Cholera outbreak. While Joseph and his passion for baseball is still at the heart of this short film, they felt the need to provide a more expansive view of the Cholera epidemic in Haiti as a call to duty, in hopes the UN will take responsibility for the terrible situation.

After premiering Sun City Picture House at the Tribeca Film Festival last year, Darg, Mooser and Wilde are back to give Baseball in the Time of Cholera the same honor. All three were in town to talk about their exceptionally quick turnaround, the shooting process, plans for their first feature and much more. Check it all out in the video interview below and head over to to support the effort to pressure the UN to claim responsibility for the 500,000 Haitians infected and 7,000 lives lost.

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Olivia Wilde & Directors Talk The Call-To-Action Doc “Baseball In The Time Of Cholera”

Thus far, the 2012 Tribeca Film Festival has bestowed upon us, in no particular order, snoozing flesh-eaters (Eddie – The Sleepwalking Cannibal), young lesbians contending with monstrous first love (Jack and Diane), two friends contending against alcoholism and metaphysical horrors (Resolution), and a scholar who’s driven to violent ends over a missing copy of a Charles Dickens novel (Nancy, Please). And those are just a few of the New York City festival’s highlights up until this point, but one project sits above them all in terms of real-life importance.

Baseball in the Time of Cholera, directed by aid workers turned filmmakers David Darg and Bryn Mooser, tackles a crucial, call-to-arms subject in the limited span of 27 minutes, but every second counts. The documentary short follows young Joseph Avyns, a kid living in Port au Prince, Haiti, who loves playing baseball and dreams of making it into the MLB, but there’s one major roadblack standing in between him and those goals: His home turf is being ravaged by the disease known as cholera, a deadly ailment that has already claimed the lives of over 7,000 Haitian victims. Concurrently, a lawyer named Mario Joseph is working hard to make the United States take responsibility for allowing the disease to enter Haiti via unsanitary Nepalese soldiers, and, by the film’s end, the worlds of Joseph and Mario intersect in the wake of heartbreaking tragedy.

Riding alongside Darg and Mooser on their mission to raise worldwide awareness about this devastating issue is executive producer Olivia Wilde (TRON: Legacy, Cowboys & Aliens), the prolific Hollywood scene-stealer who’s been actively contributing aid to Haiti’s less fortunate since 2009. Together, the three filmmakers hope that Baseball in the Time of Cholera (which will begin a limited theatrical run in Los Angeles on May 4th, at the Laemmle’s NoHo 7 theater) reaches as broad an audience as possible with its theme of America’s pastime giving youngsters like Joseph fuel for optimism amidst cholera’s overwhelming impact.

Complex had a chance to sit down with Wilde, Darg, and Mooser over the weekend to discuss Baseball in the Time of Choleraand the magnitude of its messages.

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Olivia Wilde: Chris Hemsworth and I Competed Over Our Hair

When Olivia Wilde took on the role of 1970s supermodel Suzie Miller for the upcoming film Rush, she had to lighten her hair and get a retro shag cut.

And apparently her gorgeous makeover sparked some on-set jealousy from co-star Chris Hemsworth, who plays Formula One racer James Hunt in the Ron Howard directed flick.

“We competed over haircut and hair color, but I think he won,” the 28-year-old actress told Us Weekly at the Tribeca Film Festival premiere of Deadfall in New York City Sunday. “He has an amazing head of hair!”

This is the second major hair change Wilde has made this year. In January she transformed her style from long and brown to highlighted and shoulder-length.

Last month fans got a look at Wilde and Hemsworth engaging in a passionate kiss while filming a wedding scene for the movie, but in real life she’s dating SNL funnyman Jason Sudeikis.

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