Red Sparrow: Interview with Star Jennifer Lawrence–Part 2

Red Sparrow

Jennifer Lawrence is clueless about the designers of her wardrobe, and her publicist provides the information. She is wearing a top by Public School, Stella McCartney pants, Jimmy Choo shoes, and necklace by Established.

 

Relationship with Mom

JL: I live on my own and I have lived away from home since I was 14.  But I am 27 years old and still need my mom.  She is a huge support system for me and she has been so supportive of my career. I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for her and she has sacrificed so much so that I could have this career.  I still want her opinion on pretty much everything except boys.

 

Scared by?

JL: Interviews.  Sit down, one-on-one magazine interviews, because I am just hanging out with somebody and then it gets printed.  My Vanity Fair cover comes out I think February 25, and I will go to sleep with a pit in my stomach every single night until it just comes out, like come out!  If it’s going to be terrible, just let it be terrible.  But it’s scary, because you just have a conversation with somebody and then, being misunderstood I think is probably my biggest fear, like accidentally offending somebody, just accidentally being an asshole.  That keeps me up at night.

Watching TV

JL: Right now, my sofa is not super comfortable, but it’s really pretty. I turned my dining room that is off my kitchen into a TV room, because I was like, I can’t keep walking, my TV room was the furthest point from the kitchen, and that I couldn’t live with for more than a year. So I have reconstructed my house around my laziness. I love “Modern Family” and “Veep” I think is probably my favorite show in the entire world.  I think Julia Louis-Dreyfus is the greatest comedic actress who has ever lived.  I mean that.

 

Mother! as Allegory

I don’t think that anybody made a mistake.  Darren and I had two different points of view and mine was, I wanted to tell the public the allegory and I did, because I felt like otherwise you are not going to know what you are looking at and you are not going to know the depths of the story that he is actually telling.  But Darren is an artist and kind of like a songwriter who writes a song and it just says here it is, if you get it you get it and if you don’t, you don’t.  As an artist who wrote and conceived this entire idea I think why would he want to sit around and tell people what it all means, because it’s going to be different for everybody.  And that’s okay too.  We each just kind of represented our own opinions I guess on that mentality and how to promote the movie.  And we respected each other’s sides and I would go tell people the allegory and he wouldn’t, and then we would come home and that was it.

Razzie for Mother!

JL: My feelings are that I really don’t care.  That was the most I had ever given to a role and I think that that was my greatest performance in my opinion and that is really the only opinion that I really care about.  I am so proud of that movie and I know that that film will live and I think that it will be taught in film schools, because there were so many aspects to it that need to be recognized and appreciated, down to the camera language that Darren used.  I don’t really care.  Jack Nicholson was nominated for a Razzie for “The Shining,” so I’m good.

 

British History

JL: I have always been interested.  Francis and I actually share that fascination.  We were supposed to start an autobiography on Winston Churchill at the same time, but then “The Crown” came out and we were like oh! I think it probably started from reading when I was young and I love Philippa Gregory books, and it was all about British royal history and fictionalized but based on truth. I think it’s so cool and of course I am obsessed with a royal family.

 

Equal Pay

JL: There are so many different moving parts that go into pay equality.  A lot of it starts from the very top and there’s only so much that agents can do. I mean the essay that I wrote about pay equality was really just about my own mental perspective on the whole thing, why didn’t I feel like I deserved to be paid equally?  I have been nominated for and have won an Academy Award and I have led movies to be number one at the box office, so I don’t know what part of me felt like I deserved to not be paid equally, and that’s what I was more interested in.  It’s across all fields obviously my only perspective is Hollywood because that is where I work, but this is a global issue.  I was really just kind of exploring my own thought process on why I would let something like that happen.

 

Late Night TV Host

It wasn’t fun.  It was really embarrassing and mortifying.  I would never, ever want to do something like that.  I mean it was funny but yeah, when they told me they wanted to do that, I was like, you’re joking, right?  And they were like no, here’s your microphone, go on out.  And I was like oh God, okay.

 

Seducing Men

I mean, that is the ageless question, I don’t know.  If he doesn’t like your personality, he just doesn’t like you. I don’t know quite how to answer that question.

 

Challenges of Each Movie

JL: I mean this movie definitely took me out of my comfort zone and it challenged me in ways that I have never asked myself to be challenged before and there was a long period in my life when I didn’t really want to be seen sexually and I didn’t want anybody to see my flesh and there were certain things that made me uncomfortable.  But if I wanted to tell the story, then I was going to have to get over that fear and I felt empowered by it.  And I pick up different things from movies and when I was doing “Joy” I was 25 and that was kind of like a life changing moment and owning that business or your family or your life.  And “Mother” was just a complete departure and it is completely different from my personality and the way that I speak even and from the way that I think.  So I think anytime that an actor is doing a character and if you talk about walking a mile in someone’s shoes, we spent over a year in a completely different mental perspective. So it just opens your mind.

 

Causing Social Changes

JL: I mean the things that I want to change extend much further than the industry. I would like for there to be, I would like everybody to be paid equal for the same amount of work, and I would like corruption to not be legal in America, and there are many things that I would want to change.  Hollywood is just the beginning.

 

Feeling Empowered?

JL: I feel most powerful when I am being disciplined physically and when I am working out.  And also, just when I am speaking my mind.

 

Self-Education

JL: Yes, whatever I am curious about.  I didn’t really have a typical schooling life as a teenager, but I have always been very curious and if I am curious about something, then I read about it and I educate myself on it.  If I feel insecure about not knowing a lot about one particular subject, then I read about it.

 

Feeling Powerless

JL: I feel powerless when I am afraid to speak up or say something and that is when I feel small.  That’s why I was saying that when I do just say what I mean, that’s a decision that I made when I was 25, I was like you know what, I am just never going to say something that I don’t mean to diffuse an uncomfortable situation.  It’s okay if the situation is uncomfortable and I am going to say what I mean.  So when I feel like I am in a situation where I can’t do that, then that makes me feel weak.

 

Fame and Secrets

JL: Fame really does kind of change your perspective on secrets.  When somebody says don’t tell anyone, in normal life that means you can tell your best friend.  But when there are other people’s lives involved that everybody knows about and everybody cares about, somebody tells you something, you don’t repeat it.  I am going to the grave with many, many secrets and I am happy to do it and I hope everybody is doing the same thing for me. (laughter)

 

Time’s Up Movement

JL: That was horrible to hear and I think that it’s really important for people to remember that words matter.  And it’s been devastating and there’s been a struggle and with any watershed moment like this, there’s going to be pushback.  But I think that at the end of the day, what we are doing and what the hope is, is to reshape the way that we look at women and we treat women and the things that have been normalized that make us feel a bit uncomfortable, but are normalized, are all changing. And I think that when the Harvey Weinstein allegations finally broke out and all of that came to light, I was a part of a phone call of a group of women who were about to do a red carpet and we all said, I am not going to go on a red carpet and keep repeating the same statistics.  I am not talking about this issue until we have a real solution to these problems, and not just repeating the same thing over and over again. And that’s when Time’s Up was created and there is a legal defense fund, if you feel like you can’t afford to take your accuser to court, there is a hotline, if a younger actor or a less known actor is struggling with abuse, because there needs to be real, legal changes in SAG and AFTRA, so that no crew member or young actor has to ever be abused again.

 

Talking to Father

JL: I can’t talk to my dad about boys!  My father thought that I was on birth control for acne.  I can’t talk to him about boys, he would be mortified.  That’s what girlfriends are for.  I have very wise girlfriends.

 

Being Single

JL: There’s actually way more advantages to being single I am realizing. I am kind of in the single mode where I am like cool, I can do whatever I want and I can be alone and watch terrible TV and whatever I want.  And then of course in a few months I will be devastatingly lonely and feel like I am on some long waiting list, because that is what comes with single life.  But I am not there yet.

 Unwinding and Knitting

JL: No I am not knitting.  I fortunately have a neighbor who is the most amazing cook, so I have actually just been kind of getting all of my meals over there.  I know how to cook and I don’t like to cook unless I am trying to impress a guy or something, which isn’t happening anytime soon.  So I am not cooking and I have just been using my microwave a lot.  But fun fact, I use my microwave for myself, but not my dog, because I don’t want her to get cancer.  (laughter)  I don’t know what that says about me.

 

Reading?

JL:I read, morning is normally when I get a lot of my reading done and nighttime is normally like TV time. Morning time, I get all my reading done that I want.  And then nighttime, I just watch TV, I don’t do anything interesting. I can’t take Pippy on a walk, because of the coyotes.  I tried to sprinkle peanuts in the backyard to bring more squirrels in and that brought coyotes.  (laughter) So I am going to have to go and pick up every single peanut when I get home.

Fame and Trust

JL: A lot has changed.  And even just for my really close friends that aren’t famous, it’s changed for them too, because the difference between their secrets that I will keep, nobody knows who they are or cares, but the difference with my secrets is that a lot of people care.  And I am really lucky to have friends that are famous and we can talk about it.  Your world at the end of the day and it’s something that I have struggled with, there’s something that can get stunted, because your world all of a sudden gets a lot smaller, cause it gets smaller and smaller, the amount of people that you really can trust.  But trust also means different things and I can trust somebody that they are a good person, but that doesn’t mean that I have to share my deepest, darkest secrets to get close to them and that’s something that I didn’t learn until now is that it’s not like a bartering system and I don’t need to tell you secrets to get close.  So I don’t know, trust is an ever evolving lesson.

 

Violating Trust

JL: Fortunately, I have really good people in my life.  And it’s kind of easy to spot the people who are there for the wrong reasons and I also have friends who have seen and have grown with me for the same amount of time and if I don’t see it, they will and I’ll be leaving a party and I will be like, he seemed like a nice guy, and she will be like, he literally pushed me out of the way to get to you.  And I am like oh.  So there’s many eyes on the people who I get close with.

 

Feeling Pressure and Crying

JL: Feeling pressure: here is the thing, when you are a public person, people are going to be asking questions that are relevant in the world and people are going to be asking you questions about politics, especially at this time.  There are people who just want to act and people who just want to sing and I think that that should be respected.  There are people who do not want their public opinions out there.  And I think that everybody needs to be understanding of that, because they just asked to be an artist and they just asked to be in a movie or write music.  They didn’t ask to be a spokesperson for certain politics and also for years we have heard everybody say just shut up and act, shut up and sing!  And I think that that should be respected, people who don’t feel comfortable talking about politics or anything publicly.  For me, I have a certain resilience and I don’t know what else to call it and I am prepared for the lashing that comes with speaking my mind and I use that, I personally am very passionate about fairness and if I see moments that are unfair and I am outspoken about it and if I feel that I can make a difference by saying something by starting a conversation, then I am going to do that.  But that doesn’t mean that I would ever judge anybody for deciding not to become political.  I don’t know what makes me cry, I don’t know how to answer that.

 

Political Engagement

JL: I always try to stay politically engaged and I think that it’s important to be informed and I think that that’s the biggest power that you can give yourself. And also in that scene, what’s interesting about this movie is that we are telling two different, even though obviously fictionalized, but we are telling two different points of view, so that would be the Russians point at that time of the U.S.

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