Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: United States
Thanks a bunch, Kelsey. I'll definitely have to pick that one up today along with Cosmo, Arena ... the list goes on and on, hehe.
I haven't seen this before. I'm pretty sure it's just a rehash of old quotes, etc., but it's new to me. From the New Zealand Herald:
Keira Knightley resists the glitz of Hollywood
10.07.2004 By KATHERINE TULICH
Keira Knightley has a dilemma. The 19-year-old British actress is in Los Angeles and wants to go shopping. She's had her eyes on these great cowboy boots in a shop on Sunset Boulevard.
There's just one problem: Over the store is a Shrek-sized poster of her face staring determinedly at passers-by, promoting her new film, King Arthur, in which she plays Guinevere, warrior princess.
"It's this amazing shop that sells great cowboy boots that are really cheap, and I wanted to go in there but I can't because the poster is right across the road and I would be really embarrassed," she says in an accent that swings between posh and East Ender.
She can't get her publicist or PA to run in and buy them, because she doesn't employ one. After star turns in Bend It Like Beckham and the runaway hit Pirates of the Caribbean, Knightley has become Hollywood's new feisty "It Girl", but so far she is reluctant to subscribe to its standard code of star behaviour.
"It's not that I'm trying to make any grand statement, but I just don't feel I need anyone to help me. I'm bone lazy now, so could you imagine if I had someone doing everything for me?" she says.
"Besides, I'm only 19 and this is the time when you are meant to be learning to do things for yourself. I think if I employed a personal assistant, that would be the end of my development. I'd stay 19 forever."
In the gargantuan top floor presidential suite of the St Regis Hotel, Knightley's tiny frame is scooped like a tennis ball thrown into the corner of a couch.
She is bare-foot, wearing hip-hugging black Dolce and Gabbana pants, which she explains are on loan, and a short-sleeved canary yellow Penquin top which she proudly claims is hers. "It cost 20, so this is definitely mine," she announces.
Her face is makeup free but a small gift bag sits beside her. "Now that officially is a perk of this job," she smiles as she shows me its contents - a new French beauty line from Paris. "You get to try out all the new beauty products."
She saw King Arthur for the first time the night before. "It was terrifying; I hate watching myself," she tells me. "It's like listening to yourself on an answering machine. It makes you cringe."
Apart from not getting her boots, the actress, who remains London-based, shows a distinct distrust for the place that has made her a movie star.
"There are so many beautiful people here and they are all so thin and sporty.
"If I was here too long I would think, 'Oh God, I should change. I should be wearing this or go on a diet'. I don't think it's very healthy."
Easy words to say when you are already a casting director's dream - young, rail thin (her waist measured in at 48cm, 19 inches, for the corsets in Pirates) and pouty-lipped.
But Knightley is quick to anger at the suggestion that she would deliberately keep her body that way just to appease fashion. I wondered if she had read the English press who had once suggested she may have some eating concerns.
"It's called being a 16-year-old girl who hasn't got tits yet," she says irately, referring to the past headlines.
"My dad is tall and thin, so this is my body. I can pretty well eat anything I want, and I don't work out at all because I find it very boring.
"While I wouldn't ever suggest I was any kind of role model, it's important to be very clear about these things because I do think young girls get influenced by what they read. I think whatever shape you are is absolutely fine and you can't make yourself anything you're not."
Her lack of fondness for the gym contrasts with the active roles she is constantly being given.
"I'm very perplexed about it really," she smiles. "I'm rather a lazy character and the idea that they keep casting me in these very strong and very active roles is actually rather difficult for me."
In the revisionist version of the famous tale about the king and his knights of the round table, Guinevere is hardly the young damsel wandering around a beautiful castle pining for her husband's handsome best friend, Lancelot. She's a kick-ass warrior who runs around in blue war paint (and little else) wielding knives and bows and arrows.
Although it's a reversal bound to appeal to tween girl power, Knightley insists the role is historically accurate, citing research showing that Arthur was most likely to have lived in the Dark Ages, not the more colourful medieval times in which the legend has been commonly placed.
He was thought to have been half-Roman, half-British, a reluctant and brave leader who helped to consolidate Britain against the invading Saxons in a series of spectacular battles.
"The whole idea of the film is to find the reality behind the myth and that goes for all the characters as well. Guinevere was from an ancient race, either Pict or Celt which were in fact matriarchal so the women fought on equal standing to the men, if not leading them," she says.
Some critics have noted that it seems historically ridiculous that Guinevere would wear a Versace-type leather bikini in a battle, but Knightley says the historically accurate option was impossible.
"They actually fought totally naked except for the blue woad paint on their bodies, but I wasn't really prepared to go to that extreme, so I was lucky to get my leather straps really," she says.
The actress says she has only recently become aware of her fame.
"When Pirates became a huge hit, I was in the middle of a field or up a mountain in Ireland filming King Arthur so I didn't really notice all the media attention. It's only in the past couple of months when I've had a break, that I have noticed people recognising me," she says.
But she insists life has changed little. She still hangs out with the same friends she made when she was 11, and apart from not catching the tube at rush hour, she does pretty much what she wants.
"It's up to me whether I'm going to sacrifice my teenage life and that simply is not a choice I'm prepared to make. I only have a few friends in the industry and that's the way I like it," she says.
She's also instructed friends and family not to read any press written about her. "I never read it and they've stopped reading
* King Arthur opens on Thursday
Also, Keira has apparently been named Hello Magazine's most promising teen star, winning 62% of the vote against Scarlett Johannson.
I wonder if they'll ever stop comparing and contrasting those two. First it was with Natalie Portman (although, those comparisons were completely without merit ... only because, once upon a time, they looked alike). I enjoy both Scarlett and Keira. As far as talent goes, I'd say Scarlett has the edge ... FOR NOW, simply because she's had better roles than Keira. I certainly think Keira has the potential, or chops, if you will, to surpass Scarlett, she just needs to hone her skills with some better, meatier roles (I'm hoping The Jacket
will allow her do this). As far as looks/personality go, though, Keira wins in a landslide. She's just so much more personable and down-to-earth, not to mention more fun. Scarlett strikes me as rather dull at times, plus I've heard she can be a real brat.
"So you go and you stand on your own.. and you leave on your own. And you go home and you cry, and you want to die..."