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Elsa Pataky on the perks of working with husband Chris Hemsworth in '12 Strong'

For his upcoming film 12 Strong, Chris Hemsworth was joined on screen for the first time by his actual leading lady — wife Elsa Pataky. The pair, who have been married for seven years, co-star in the action flick that is based on the 12 special forces who were deployed to Afghanistan after the September 11th terrorist attacks. Elsa plays Chris’ on-screen wife in the movie.

“He made me work twice as hard,” Elsa, 41, tells HOLA! USA. “That’s what we do when we work together." However one part of the movie that wasn't a challenge were the couple's love scenes. "The romantic scenes were not difficult at all," she laughed. Continue reading for more on Elsa and Chris' first film together. 

elsa-chris-working-together Chris, 34, and Elsa, who share daughter India, five, and three-year-old twin sons, Sasha and Tristian, star together in the new film 12 Strong Photo: Getty Images

HOLA! USA: Was it difficult to work with your own husband for the first time, especially in such an emotional role?
Elsa Pataky: "He was very pleasant to work with. I believe that together we draw the best from one another. Although the challenge becomes higher, but it was gratifying, since we were away our children in order to concentrate on work. Of course, the romantic scenes were not difficult at all...[laughs]. It was very interesting, we had a great time and hopefully we can do it again."

MORE: Chris Hemsworth on working with wife Elsa Pataky 'It felt like a little holiday' 

What does playing this role mean to you?
"The story attracted me a lot. It is a strong script based on real life. In addition, based on events that not everyone knows. All this happened right after 9/11 and I think it is important that people are aware. I like to represent all those women who also play the hero role by letting go of their husbands without knowing what is going to happen to them. Staying alone with the children without knowing if their husbands are going to go back one day...or not. It is very hard and it was important [for me] to pay honor to them."

chris-elsa-children Elsa noted that her husband made her "work twice as hard" Photo: Instagram/@elsapatakyconfidential

How do you prepare for a role like this?
"I read a lot and studied. But at the end of the day, I am a mother and I am a woman and I know what it feels like when my husband goes away for work. I know there’s no comparison to this, so I can not imagine what these women go through when their husbands sacrifice so much and they have to back them up. We never really know what’s going on with those women and their children, or how they feel."

Do you think that you would ever be able to be the wife of someone who serves in the armed forces?
"I wouldn’t. That's why I admire them even more. These film sequences between Chris and I really have been very hard. I can't imagine how difficult it is for them in real life. Of course, they were committed to this when they married them. Many knew there would be a sacrifice and that to me is worthy of admiration."

MORE: Chris Hemsworth says wife Elsa Pataky has sacrificed a lot for him 

Where were you on September 11 and what do you remember about that day?
"I was traveling in the car. We went to the south I believe, someone sent us a text that [there] had been a terrorist attack in New York and we stopped at the first bar to see the scenes on TV and we were all in shock. We thought this was false, we didn't know what to say. I believe that today we all remember those moments of so much pain." 

 12 Strong opens in theaters January 19 

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