Apollonia Vanova: Striking Silhouette

I’ll admit it was my not-exactly-inner lecherous 13 year old that initially prompted me to look up Watchmen the movie’s Silhouette. I’ve always loved this character’s look and story. From the Watchmen wiki:

Ursula Vandt was a Jew who left Austria to avoid the Nazis. In 1939, the Silhouette made the headlines after exposing a crooked publisher who was trafficking child pornography, as told in Hollis Mason‘s book Under the Hood. The article stated that she gave a punitive beating to the entrepreneur and his two lead cameramen. Later that year she read the ad in the Gazette asking for other masked adventurers to step forward, and joined the Minutemen shortly after. In 1946, the press revealed that she was living with another woman in a lesbian relationship, as Mason stated. Laurence Schexnayder persuaded the group to expel her to minimize the P.R. damage.

The actress playing Silhouette was so striking with her severe hair, shiny gloves and stiletto boots that I couldn’t help myself. Of course much of the credit for her perfect appearance should go to costume designer Michael Wilkinson, but the feline grace in every second of Silhouette’s brief screen time is definitely the actress’ own.

I suspected Slavic roots – those cheekbones don’t lie! As it turns out, Apollonia Vanova is a Slovakian immigrant currently residing in Vancouver. She’s also an opera singer, sculptor and a… Fitness model? Indeed. You might recognize her as the Wraith Queen from Stargate Atlantis – just one of a string of sci-fi and fantasy roles she’s played. Vanova has a degree in sculpture from Emily Carr Institute of Art and Design and uses everything from clay to leather, I just wish she had her artwork online! Looking forward for more from this lady, no matter what the medium might be.

Here are a couple of interviews, for those of you who are intrigued: 1, 2. And Michael Wilkinson has a behind the scenes video on his website, here. From the Entertainment Examiner interview:

Silhouette is never seen without a cigarette. While that is totally time and character appropriate, it is not exactly politically correct in this day and age. Any thoughts on that?
I have a cigarette in my hand.

I guess that answers that question.

25 Responses to “Apollonia Vanova: Striking Silhouette”

  1. Samantha Says:

    And it was my not-exactly-inner lecherous 13 year old that prompted me to immediately arrive home and google “watchmen penis”.

  2. Ben Morris Says:

    I loved the part in the opening titles that recreated this iconic Alfred Eisenstaedt photo, but with Silhouette in place of the soldier.

  3. Vivacious G Says:

    She certainly is something.

  4. Zoetica Says:

  5. cherry Says:

    she was the first person i looked up after seeing that film, also!

  6. elizaveta Says:

    great minds think alike! from the moment i saw silhouette in the opening credits, i said to my viewing companion, “she HAS to be slavic! those cheekbones are far too epic to be anything else!” he smirked, and said something along the lines of “it takes one to know one.” thanks, apollonia for striking a pose—and a critical strike for slavs everywhere!

  7. cappy Says:

    I’m irked this character didn’t have more of a role in the movie, even if it was just in flashbacks.

    That being said, I wished I hadn’t seen this movie at all.

    (At least until I’ve read the book.)

  8. meeks Says:

    you’re not the only one who had to look her up. she was one of my favorite things about the movie.

  9. john colby Says:

    In the comic the silkSpector(2) is constantly smoking. The took that out for the film. Here hope for Silhouette spin-off

  10. Sterlingspider Says:

    And another one… right to IMDB when I got home. She was so stunning!

    I must also confess to an overwhelming desire to take Patrick Wilson as Dan Dreiburg home in my pocket. I’m not sure if I want to share my comic collection with him or just pin him up against the bookshelves though… well, I’m not sure which one I want to do /first/ that is.

    It actually took me a really good portion of the movie to decide whether I even found him attractive at all, but I think he clicks into the 80s geek/underdog lust I am forever doomed to feel having come into my nascent sexuality as a young geek during the late 80s.

  11. Zoetica Says:

    Alright alright, while we’re geeking out and shamelessly objectifying masked heroes, I admit: besides Silhouette it’s a tie between Rorschach and Dr. Manhattan for me.

    Oh hell, I can’t choose. I’ll take ’em both. [Not at the same time. Important.]

  12. Glamourbeastie Says:

    Yes, the minute I saw her I thought “THAT’S going into the spank bank/brains trust”.

  13. Io Says:

    I’m so glad you looked her up! Nevermind my own proclivities, but while watching the film I was also rather entranced by her (and her fabulous costume).

  14. Alice Says:

    Oh, YES! As caught up as I was in the beauty of the entire movie, I really couldn’t stop thinking about the post-WWII kiss scene! Seriously, if Rorschach hadn’t been so completely awesome, I may have been really distracted.

  15. Io Says:

    Alice: Indeed, Haley was amazing as Rorschach — have you seen “Little Children?” He was also great in that. Incidentally, that actor who played Night Owl was also in that film.

  16. fortheloveofthestars Says:

    Farscape aside (a show I think you all should look into…) I haven’t had so much hots for one cast in a really long time. Dan, Adrian, Rorsch, Jon, all lovely, but Silhouette explodes with charisma. I haven’t read the book in a long while so I’d forgotten her, then SWOOP! In she comes and blows everyone’s mind. Good job to her!

  17. Tequila Says:

    She almost makes me want to see the movie. Almost.

    Zo & Dr. Manhattan…the amount of blue jokes to be made both in terms of color & taste are just too epic. I’ll bite my tongue though in reverence for the work :P

    Io: He was indeed pretty amazing in that film. Stole a lot of it even for a film with solid performances from all involved. He’s also gonna be in the next Scorsese film.

  18. Alice Says:

    Io-sadly, Watchmen was my first exposure to Haley, but I gather he’s quite adept at portraying semi-sociopaths, so I’m excited to see more of his films! I feel my inner fangirl springing to life already.

  19. Ornith Says:

    I just got home from seeing this film, and in fact commented to the person I was with, “dammit, why’d they have to kill of Silhouette in the first five minutes?!”

    So. Hot. And I want her jacket and gloves.

  20. Infamous Amos Says:

    Just got back from seeing it for the second time. At this rate, I’ll be putting Zach Snyder’s kids through college. I feel like I should send Alan Moore a $10 cheque in the mail or something to atone for my sins.

    Silhouette deffinately had something going on there, but after looking through the book of Watchmen Portraits that just came out, there was one fashionable figure who was notably absent from the final cut of the flick, Captain Axis. Hum, I wonder what could possibly have been objectionable about his costume that would have the studio heads cut him out of the theatrical release?…

    I know its evil, I know its wrong, and I know I am probably going to hell for thinking this, but dammit I want this costume.

  21. leloo Says:

    I think There should devote an entire movie on Silhouette.
    She was so pretty and her attitude as a superhero was way
    awesomere than silk spectre.

  22. Tequila Says:

    @ Infamous Amos…Hollywood LOVES Nazi’s. Actors love to play them, directors get hard ons about using them, and the public likes the absolute black & white evil they represent. If anything Capt. Axis was cut for time…after Tom Cruise & Bryan Singer doing their Nazi Porn movie and scoring big in Europe for it I doubt ANY would damn you for wanting that uniform. If anything you’d have to get in line behind assorted industrial bands and Das Bunker patrons.

  23. Arnot Says:

    Hells yes. Watching Silhouette for all of the twenty seconds of airtime she got completely distracted me from the rest of the movie. Seriously, I didn’t even notice much of the rest of it. Something about her darkness and sudden demise is so alluring.. Quite frankly it made the whole Silk Spectre thing a bit of a let down.

  24. Dr Manhattan Says:

    Apollonia Vanova – what an appropriate name. Stunningly hot woman.

  25. Susan's Stiletto Boots Says:

    What a goddess of a woman. Apollonia Vanova could pass as a statue. Her picture looks incedible.