In ''Reaching for the Moon,'' Otto takes on what she calls the ''incredibly brave and uncompromised life'' of poet Elizabeth Bishop
The Australian native, 45, is best known as bold Éowyn in the Lord of the Rings films.
Bishop, as she falls into a liberating but bumpy love affair with a female architect in 1950s Brazil.
To capture Bishop’s speech, Otto listened to tapes: “Early on, her voice sounded much thinner and higher.” To portray alcoholism, she resisted one-note shtick: “There’s a period [while drinking] when you’re drunk and clever. Then there’s a period when you’re depressed and bottomed-out.” To internalize the poems? “I tried to work on one every day and get to the bottom of it.”