The Devil Wears Prada - Anne Hathaway interview
Compiled by Jack Foley
ANNE Hathaway talks about appearing alongside screen legend Meryl Streep in Devil Wears Prada, as well as what the film means in terms of her own career and, urm, fashion sense.
Q: Did working on this movie improve your sense of style?
A: Yeah. I think it gave me a greater appreciation for it. But honestly, style for me is whatever is clean.
Q: Are you familiar with the fashion industry?
A: Yeah. I mean as an actress, you’re kind of given a bit more insight into it. And we’re usually lucky enough to be able to wear some fabulous clothes and accessories.
Q. Would you say that you have an eye for fashion?
A: I’m not one of those stars that goes our and literally dresses to be photographed. I’m kind of a ‘what you see is what you get’ type of girl when I dress. I go for comfort above everything else. I love fashion, I love being able to have fun with it but I think I need to get a little bit more organized before I ever become a true fashionista.
Q: Do you like the make-over your character gets in the film?
A: I don’t call it a make-over because I made enough of those kinds of movies when I was younger. I call it a wardrobe enhancement.
Q: In the beginning of the film your character makes many fashion mistakes. Have you ever made any mistakes?
A: Once, I accidentally wore a see-through dress without a bra. That stands out as my absolute worst, lowest moment. I cried myself to sleep for a week.
Q: What was it like working with Meryl Streep?
A: It was great! She asked some of us to go over to her house to meet and talk about the film and get to know each other. She said to arrive at 5pm and I showed up at 4.45pm. But then I realised that I shouldn’t be early, so I was just sitting there and was kind of getting really nervous. I ran around to a liquor store and bought a bottle of wine. When I met her, I was like: “Hi, it’s me. Brought this, it’s just nice for you but it’s medicinal for me.”
It was great because she kind of pulled me into this really warm hug and said: “I think you’re perfect for the role and I’m so happy that we’re going to be working together on this. But I warn you, that’s the last nice thing I’m going to say to you!” And it was!
Q: So she stayed in-character the whole time?
A: Yeah, she wanted to stay in character and to be focused. I think it was her way of letting me know that while she was playing the part, she didn’t want to be distracted by a whole lot of chitchat. I kind of tried to stay very quiet when I was on set around her, and tried to take my cues from her.
Q: What was your first job, and are there any comparisons to that job and the job you have in the film?
A: My first job was baby-sitting. I had a great time because I love kids. Sometimes, when I’m having a bad day, I’m like: “Oh, you know what? I’m going to chuck it in and become a kindergarten teacher!”
But I did have this one three-year-old who was kind of tyrannical and the one thing she had in common with Meryl’s character was that she was so impossible to please. So she was kind of my worst boss, even though she was so small.
Q: Have you had any other jobs?
A: I’ve been really lucky actually. I was kind of successful enough in acting so each time I started to run out of money, I would get another commercial, etc. Plus I was living at home, so it’s not like I had that many expenses. By the time I’d gone to college, I’d made enough money to put myself through two years of college without student loans.
Q: You filmed some of the scenes in Paris, how did you enjoy that?
A: The thing that’s cool about Paris is apparently when you work, the crews have specific hours. You can’t work a minute over! I think they work a 12-hour day, and that’s it. Also, they serve wine with their meals. On an American set, that would never in a million years pass. And it’s not even like we were getting drunk by any means, but just a little wine in the middle of shooting was great in taking the edge off a tiny bit.
Q: Are you planning to work in theatre at all?
A: I’d really love to, yes. I can’t talk specifically about anything, but I’m talking with a few people about doing this in the next two years.
Q: What helps you choose projects now?
A: I’ve been extraordinarily successful for my age. I think for probably anyone’s age, I’m very fortunate. I’ve been, thankfully, in big blockbusters and I know what that feels like and I realise that the way to make myself happy is to kind of not choose roles based on what’s going to be the biggest movie, because every movie that I’ve ever been in that made money, actually made it accidentally.
So the way I go about choosing roles is basically by just trying to pick the complete opposite of the last thing I did, or if it has someone else who I really have wanted to work with.