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Gwyneth Paltrow: playing dead in 'Contagion' was 'really fun'

09/08/2011 by Olivia Allin

Gwyneth Paltrow's appearance in "Contagion" might be short-lived, but the actress said that she enjoyed playing dead.

"I realize it's gory to watch," Paltrow said in an interview provided by Warner Brothers Pictures. "But it was actually really fun to shoot it and to see how long I could be still and not breathe when I was dead and you know, they painted my tongue a strange color. They did all kinds of things to me so I thought it was very fun and exciting."

In the film, Paltrow plays Beth Emhoff, the first to die in the outbreak of a deadly disease that is spreading faster than the Center for Disease Control is finding a cure.

"I found it disturbing because I realized this kind of thing could really happen again," Paltrow said. "A lot of thrillers are about zombies or killers, but this is something that's like a silent antagonist that is very real and very possible. I thought it was a very interesting subject to talk about in a film."

Steven Soderbergh helmed the film and asked during her visit to Hong Kong, asked Paltrow to take photos which were used in the final scene of the film.

"The whole Hong Kong experience was amazing, I had never been there and whenever I go somewhere new, I like to hit the ground running and see everything I can and find all the great places to eat," Paltrow continued. "We were only there for a few days but it seemed like we were there for a lot longer because we packed a lot in. I didn't realize that he was just going to give me a camera and say 'Take this boat and take pictures of your experience' and that became the end of the movie. It was a very interesting way to participate."

Even though Paltrow's character experienced the dangers of an airborne virus, the actress said that she didn't become more germ conscious after filming "Contagion." "The truth is, there was an article in the New York Observer, 10 or 15 years ago that my brother read and got obsessed with where they sent a microbiologist out and swabbed a bunch of surfaces in New York, so this has been something that's been in my mind a long time," Paltrow said. "I already don't do things in public bathrooms and I'm already just a tiny bit OCD about touching surfaces, so this didn't change my behavior - I didn't get worse from doing the movie, thank god. But germs are an important part of our immunity, so with kids, you can't be too precious with them and keep them in a bubble."

The actress is married to Chris Martin, singer of the British rock band Coldplay. The couple are parents to daughter Apple, 6, and son Moses, 5.

Paltrow recently signed on to play a sex addict in the upcoming film, "Thanks for Sharing." She will also reprise her "Iron Man" character Pepper Potts in "The Avengers," which recently finished filming.

"Contagion" was released in theaters on September 9, watch a trailer below.

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