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I'd linked to Natalya Rudakova's "doom and gloom" then did a little further reading about the actor.

A "mini bio" in IMDB's Natalya Rudakova Biography says only

She was born in Leningrad, former Soviet Union. Her parents moved with her from Russia to New York when she was 17 years old, and she continues to reside in New York.

While working as a hairdresser at a salon, she was discovered by Luc Besson, the co-writer of Transporter 3, in New York, when she crossed a street. He gave her acting lessons and cast her as the female lead in Transporter 3.

but the German Wikipedia article Natalya Rudakova; Leben says:

Sie wuchs in Leningrad (heute Sankt Petersburg) auf und erhielt dort als Kind zunächst Zeichen- und Schauspielunterricht. Später konnte sie diesen aufgrund der schwierigen Zeiten nach dem Zusammenbruch der Sowjetunion nicht mehr besuchen. Ihre Mutter ging mit ihr jeden Sonntag ins Theater, wo sie eine Begeisterung für Schauspielerei entwickelte. Im Alter von 17 Jahren zog sie aus einer Entscheidung ihrer Mutter heraus nach New York City, wo sie später als Friseurin arbeitete.

Rudakova gab in dem französisch-US-amerikanischen Actionfilm Transporter 3 ihr Filmdebüt. Dort spielt sie als Valentina Tomilenko an der Seite von Auftragsfahrer und Titelheld Frank Martin (Jason Statham) die weibliche Hauptrolle. Sie wurde von Drehbuchautor und Produzent Luc Besson in New York beim Überqueren einer Straße entdeckt. Die Dreharbeiten zum Film begannen wenige Schauspielunterrichtsstunden später.

I can't read German; google translates the last complete sentence as

The shooting of the film began a few hours later.

But google translates the isolated phrase "wenige Schauspielunterrichtsstunden später" to something more reasonable:

a few acting lessons later

and a few acting lessons might be a few weeks or months, depending on what "Schauspielunterrichtsstunden" really means in this particular context, and I think trying to squeeze any more out of this one sentence is unproductive.

So I'd like to ask:

Question: How long after Luc Besson's "discovery" of Natalya Rudakova did the filming of Transporter 3 begin? Could it have been just a few "hours" or "lessons" later?

If so, it seems like quite an interesting story and so I'd expect more to have been written about it.

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  • Just asked in German SE: How long could a Schauspielunterrichtsstunden be?
    – uhoh
    Nov 22 at 23:27
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    disagree with the close vote; that filming would start just a few acting lessons after the actress' discovery is particularly notable and certainly not "banal minutiae". Unless you have the inside scoop, why not wait and see how this turns out rather than vote to block others from posting an answer?
    – uhoh
    Nov 22 at 23:29
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    On one hand, your question is interesting, but on another you already found the answer and it's just a matter of translating from German. Also, your first link doesn't have any connection to the story or the question.
    – Luciano
    Nov 23 at 9:22
  • I’m voting to close this question because it is asking about a translation.
    – Joachim
    Nov 23 at 10:06
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    @Joachim No, it's asking about a time. Any SE question requires some research and I would be remiss if I didn't do any. I've given it a go, and run into a wall. But it doesn't make sense to say the question is about a translation. The question is clearly How long after Luc Besson's "discovery" of Natalya Rudakova did the filming of Transporter 3 begin?
    – uhoh
    Nov 23 at 10:37
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According to Cosmopolitan:

Twenty-three-year-old Natalya Rudakova has the kind of beauty that makes you stop in your tracks and stare. And that's exactly what the writer of Transporters 3 did when he spotted the undiscovered Russian redhead on the streets of New York. A few months and a handful of acting classes later, she quit her job at a hair salon and jetted off to Europe to shoot the film.


According to the Express:

He recalls, "She just passed by me and I noticed her freckles and blue eyes. I was with my assistant and I said, 'Are you seeing this?'

"Of course, if I said to her, 'Hey, I'm Luc Besson,' she'd probably run, so my assistant asked me if she should ask her if she's a model or something, so she'd feel more comfortable.

"So I proposed to her if she wanted to try to act and my assistant and I went back to Paris and we gave her some 25 lessons. We prepped her for about six months and then we brought her to Paris to verify if she was ready or not.

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  • Thanks for your speedy answer, demonstrating as I predicted that it would not turn out to be "banal minutiae".
    – uhoh
    Nov 23 at 10:41

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