Opening this Friday, in limited release, is The Yellow Handkerchief and it stars Kristen Stewart, William Hurt, Maria Bello and Eddie Redmayne. The film is about three strangers who take a road trip through post Katrina Louisiana. Along the way, they learn about one another and why they agreed to take a ride with a complete stranger.
To help promote the film, I recently got to participate in a roundtable interview with Kristen Stewart and Eddie Redmayne. Since I also did a TV interview with the two of them (I’ll be posting it Wednesday), I only transcribed what Stewart said. But if you’d like to hear what Stewart and Redmayne had to say, after the jump you can listen to the audio. During the interview, Stewart talked about the roles she’s being offered, how she chooses what part she takes, The Runaways, Breaking Dawn, and a lot more.
Also, since I’m not going to have time to transcribe all the interviews I did for the film, here are some links so you can listen to the audio of the interviews. If you have any problems with playback, try right clicking on the link and saving it to your desktop.
Question: When you go on road trips, do you find them to be profound journeys of self-discovery?
Kristen Stewart: The only road trip that I’ve ever taken was back from Portland when I was up there doing Twilight. I bought a little truck and drove home. It wasn’t like the most transformative experience but it was fun. It gave me a sense of freedom and going away from something that was a rather intense experience.
Q: As the world is your oyster now, what attracts you to a role?
KS: I mean, as much as you can say I’d like to do this because it’s different from what I’ve done before, I can’t really plan things out like that because despite whether or not a character sort of fits my description and the script is good, what actually drives me to do something like this, which is a really bizarre thing if you think about it: to play a part in a film and for more reason than just “Oh, I get to be in a movie.” It’s like no, I want to live out this life. It’s like, why? So it has to speak to me in some way and that’s always hard to describe, so I don’t know what I want to do. This is the first time I haven’t had one of my next jobs lined up so I have a totally clean horizon. That’s actually pretty exciting.
Q: Is that a great place to be? What kind of offers are you getting?
KS: I mean, it’s not like I’m getting – – it’s not like everyone’s like, “Oooh.” To be honest, it’s such a weird thing to talk about in this capacity. I’ve been getting – – you always sort of don’t look at scripts that are very clearly just framework and they just want to put a dollar sign in the picture frame. It’s so obvious. I only want to do work that I find to be moving and that’s something that I can’t be specific about. So I’m totally lucky and I can’t believe that I am. I’m not saying that I can do anything but I definitely have more opportunity than I’ve ever had so it’s awesome.
Q: Do you not expect Breaking Dawn to tie up your schedule? Will it be two?
KS: That, probably November but I don’t know if it’s going to be one or two.
Q: Why wouldn’t they?
KS: Yeah, sure, that would be a…
Q: Are you contracted for two movies or just one? Maybe they can’t make two.
KS: I don’t know. I don’t know actually. I can’t imagine that they wouldn’t want – – the story so completely warrants two films and it would suck to have to – – it would be really disappointing to have to be able to just go, ‘Okay, we have to lose this sequence and this scene and this sequence and this scene.’ So I would like to do two movies but I really, to be perfectly honest, don’t know what they’re going to do.
Q: You made this film before Twilight. Is it hard to think back to that? Would you approach things differently now that you have this international profile?
KS: I guess because I don’t hold the reigns, really I follow, to put it absolutely lamely, my heart, I don’t think I would have made a different – – it would be really a shame if just because I did one movie, and I know it’s four or five or whatever, but it is one story. It’s one project for me. It’s the same character. It’s not like that changes, so if something like that would then affect choices, I don’t have this scheme of how people are going to receive my movies in the order that I do them and why I do scary movies and why I do movies about “disaffected teens,” which I get all the time. They’re just people I really wanted to play. I don’t know what the hell I’m doing. I’m just playing parts that speak to me.
Q: What about Martine resonated?
KS: I felt like she was – – I could relate to her in that she’s so sort of the typical girl that really wants to be out there and smiling and totally in the middle of whatever is going on, but has been sort of embarrassed one too many times and has just gone, “I can’t do that anymore.” I feel like she’s also isolated herself in terms of she’s put herself above everyone else. It’s like she can’t talk to people because they’ve let her down too many times and so she’s suddenly – – in reaction to that, you sort of make yourself better than them. She realizes through this journey, which is a really cool thing to see such a young person go through, to go, “Oh God, I never looked at you and now I’m opening my eyes and I can see you and I was wrong.” So I liked that.
Q: Are accents easy for you?
[Eddie on the coaches who record different accents]
KS: I think they go to school for it too. I sound like I know nothing about it obviously but it’s like they break it down in such a – – there’s like 15 accents just within Louisiana. And then you can fall back on it and be like, “No, no, really, I have my accent.” It would be like me doing an English accent and watching Mary Poppins and going, “Okay.”
Q: Do you act by following your heart? As opposed to William who is meticulous.
KS: Totally, those two are interesting to see act. We were talking about it because we’ve been talking about William all day. We’ve been saying how you get hired on a job and I had had roles in movies before that I took really seriously that I really liked. I guess I learned that I was a fairly impulsive actor that didn’t really necessarily need to – – or I wasn’t aware of the fact that if I felt something, I didn’t need to sit down and go, “Okay, this is why, this is why, this is why.” It helps so much. I understand the story so much more because of William. The thing is about the whole rehearsal process, it’s not like we stood up and did the scenes and tried to get them right. It was just about understanding. He never stops. He never stops trying to acquire more knowledge. So much is not said. It’s not like there are a whole lot of events happening within the plot. The really dynamic changes in the story happen with – – a lot of people might not be into that type of movie but this is just that movie. It is very much within the glances and not really screen direction.
Q: The Runaways is getting a lot of buzz. How has that experience been and what sort of different attention are you getting for that?
KS: I mean, I think it’s so exciting that it became – – we all knew if it did well that it would be a Sundance movie but now it’s being released. It became a bigger deal than we thought which is always very exciting. I haven’t been getting like different attention. You just do interviews about your movie. I don’t know, Sundance was awesome though. I love Sundance. It’s one of the only places that you can go and show your movie and then talk to 300 people who just saw it and they’re actually just sitting there honest, like “Yeah, we just saw it.” It’s just a different experience.
Q: When you go on location, do you try to make it more like home or drown yourself in the lifestyle where you are?
KS: I try to do that. I know people, actors who go on location and make their trailers their homes. They literally put pictures up and stuff. I don’t do that. I really like being where I am. And you’re made to pretend that you actually live there so it’s like yeah, this is where I live now. You have to actually sort of, I mean more so on the other movie that I did in New Orleans, but yeah.
Q: What did you like about New Orleans?
KS: I liked petting the mules that walked on Jackson St. They’re like, “Come on, take a ride.” I was like, “No way. I just want to go pet them. I’m not going to be dragged around by this thing.”
Q: What’s it like when your mom calls and says I’m going to direct a film and I’d like you to be in it?
KS: I wish it was like that. We’re trying to get it off the ground. If she called me right now and said, “We’re making the movie,” I would be really excited. I guess the question how would it be to work with your mom, I mean we’re really close and then at the same time we’re really creatively very, very different. So I feel like it would be cool. I think that we could actually leave the family thing. I feel like we both like what we do so much that we could actually work on something and do something pretty cool.
Q: And you respect each other?
KS: Yeah, that too.