One of the reasons I loved working with Tom is people feel they know who he is... I think working with an actor who the audience already has a relationship with actually helps you in a film like this.
You know, I don't really do that much looking inside me when I'm working on a project. Whatever I am becomes what that film is. But I change; you change.
And doing a film in that period, and having to really celebrate what they wore back then, how they sat and how they spoke. You know, what the etiquette was back then for a lady. All of those things are like putting on a wig and transforming yourself, which I love.
I wanted to play a mother again. I thought it would be interesting to play the mother of an older child. And it was also the kind of part I've been looking for my whole career, actually, in film. You know, just to play a femme fatale who's very smart, and wicked.
I did some writing and bought a book, and have been working on that as a film to act and direct in.
I love working with children and this young boy, Thomas Sangster, is quite a remarkable young actor. He raises your game, you know. He certainly raised mine.
When everyone around you is doing all this incredible pirate acting and you're having to sort of play the straight guy and move the story forward, you kind of want to be doing some of that pirate ripping it up stuff, but in truth, to be a part of that project is what I love.
I love European movies and I kind of grew up on European films.
I write in my sleep. I don't know how, but I'll work on a song, go to sleep and it's finished when I wake up.
I'd like to believe that the people that have supported me in my work or identified with me in films, the people that feel they know me, they do and they don't have misconceptions - they understand. I believe that.
It has taken me years of struggle, hard work and research to learn to make one simple gesture, and I know enough about the art of writing to realize that it would take as many years of concentrated effort to write one simple, beautiful sentence.
A woman can be very beautiful and an ideal model and she will photograph incredibly well, but she'll appear in film and it won't work. What works is some fusion of physical beauty with some mental field or whatever you call it. I don't know.
I write about sex, not love. What do I know about love?
Mel is a great director because he's not just a director, he's an actor, so he knows how to direct actors. I loved working with him. He's great as a director. He's so intelligent. He's generous. I really loved him.
Everything changes as a mother. Yes, work has changed. The projects that I choose are even more important to me now. The world he's growing up in and the kind of stimulus that is out there; they are so precious and I'd do anything to protect him.
So it's kind of nervous to be in this situation, but at the same time you look at all those actors and the work that they've done, I've been in bigger films than all of them and still kept my integrity and still kept my respect.
I decided that it was not wisdom that enabled poets to write their poetry, but a kind of instinct or inspiration, such as you find in seers and prophets who deliver all their sublime messages without knowing in the least what they mean.
That's a great feeling to know that I'm going into a project that I have no idea what will become of that movie, but I really trust Ang Lee. And I really trusted Ron. It's just really nice to work with people that you feel that way about.
The difficulty of writing a good theatre play set in new reality was even greater given that the level of similitude to life that is allowed in a film would not work on the stage.
This is one of the factors that also made me very much want to make this film, apart from the fact that I loved it. If the boy hadn't been Jewish and the man hadn't been Muslim, it wouldn't have made any difference to the film. I don't think it's relevant, really.
We did this two-week boot camp before we filmed the movie. I got to know everybody in the group and we became friends. We got really tight throughout those two weeks.
At Princeton I gained a great deal of pleasure from success in my classes. knowing that I could accomplish those things, and I realized that my success was directly proportionate to the work I put in.
I don't know why people think child actresses in particular are screwed up. I see kids everywhere who are totally bored. I've never been bored a day in my life.
The level of detail and craft is something that's inscribed within the original design concept. And so when I begin to draw, I know what kind of detailing I want the building to have.
I think ultimately if you have a very high expectation of your audience and you know exactly what it is you're trying to express through the medium of film, there will always be an audience for you.