Anna Kendrick Is Still Processing Her Trauma – Rolling Stone

Anna Kendrick tearing down. Just two months ago, her father passed away after a long struggle with liver disease. And now, the Oscar-nominated actress is in the midst of promoting the most personal film of her career — one that required her to revisit the “emotionally and psychologically abusive” past she reflects on again and again.

“It’s… kind of stressful,” she said, her voice cracking. “But I also think it might not be really helpful knowing my dad is here to hear it. Is that weird?”

On top of all that, the pint-sized star triggered a particularly painful episode of hot a day ago. Looks like Da Bomb might have taken advantage of it.

“I feel like I’m on another galaxy now.”

We are sitting across from each other in a hotel restaurant in Midtown Manhattan. This is the third time I’ve interviewed Kendrick, and I’ve never seen her so blunt and weak. in her new movie, Alice, DarlingDirected by Mary Nighy, she plays a woman whose controlling boyfriend, a con artist named Simon (Charlie Carrick), shatters any sense of personality she once had. She lives in a trance-like state, fulfilling his desires and needs. When we first meet Alice, she’s out for drinks with her friends, Tess (Kanehtiyo Horn) and Sophie (Nemi Musako). But he won’t let her enjoy it. She’s bombarded with text messages, pressured into taking a sexy picture of herself in the bathroom for him. When Tess and Sophie invite her to a weekend getaway, the distance helps her come to terms with how toxic her partner really is.

Kendrick, 37, was just two months away from her painful, long-term relationship when she received the text of Alice, Darling. She has described being “curled up” while he “yelled” at her, and living in fear of a man she spent six years of her life with (they even froze embryos). She was also eager to take on a more “restrained” role, having been drawn to films such as the assistant And swallow During the early months of the pandemic – stories of women regaining their voice. It’s a powerful and largely non-verbal turn on from Kendrick, who shows up in every scene.

Anna Kendrick as Alice in Alice, Darling.

Lionsgate

Before the movie’s Jan. 20 release, exclusively in AMC Theaters, Kendrick spoke with him Rolling Stone About overcoming an abusive ex and her unique friendship with Aubrey Plaza.

How were you handling the press tour for Alice, Darling? It is unique in that it forces you to share deeply personal and difficult stories from your past.
I was really surprised that I was finding journalism more challenging than making this movie. I figured it out relatively quickly and made a few changes. I worked a day in an unusual style – six minutes each, forty outlets. It’s like trying to get into any open conversation and I had to admit after that first unsolicited day, it’s totally understandable for any journalist to come and not be in a place to be so open and meet me where I’m at.

Is it still a somewhat open wound, or has it only slightly healed?
I think it will just be a process. Have you ever gotten really high and started going down, and you started feeling like, “Okay, thank God, I’m not high anymore.” But then another hour goes by and you think, “Oh my God, I was still so high an hour ago.” I feel like constantly — from a week after a relationship, to two weeks after a relationship, to two years after a relationship — I go, “Oh, I bet I’ll go back to this moment in a few years and think I was still so high.” Sometimes I feel like I’m in a race to an imaginary finish line, and I try so hard to remember that it won’t help me in reality.

Did the relationship end before the pandemic? Because this presented a whole different set of factors – basically being trapped with someone.
you did not. It’s weird because when the pandemic first hit, there was something unspoken where we were almost relieved that something so terrible was happening that neither of us could think of what was going wrong in our relationship. The first month was amazing between us, because this terrible thing was happening in the world and we had no choice but to be nice to each other. And then you slowly start to realize that it’s going to be like this for the foreseeable future, and it starts to have room for your personal problems to creep back in. There were several months where I would start crying out of nowhere, and he wouldn’t get upset because we could pretend it was about staying indoors.

It seems like he wasn’t the most supportive or comforting partner when I was grieving.
yes. I remember rehearsing a scene with Nick Thune love life Where he was like, “I know my character is an idiot, but I don’t know why I would be so upset if you weren’t going to step up the fight at all.” And I remember saying to him, “Well, maybe it’s just the fact that I’m crying that makes you so angry.” And he was like, “This doesn’t make sense.” I remember thinking, Oh my God, this character is supposed to be a piece of shit and it’s not even meant for him. That’s too bad.

How did you get away from such a toxic relationship? Were your friends the ones who helped pull you out of it, as they do inside Alice, Darling?
There were a lot of drops in the bucket. I wish I had an eloquent answer for that. Honestly, I think the most important thing was the cure, Al-Anon, and my safe friendships and relatives. I started drawing boundaries. [Begins tearing up] “We need to disconnect,” I said, because he was leaving town anyway, “and you might need to get out if things don’t go well.” And it blew it up for him – which isn’t even what I wanted, but I didn’t even have the ability to draw firm boundaries until a good six months of therapy and programming.

Plus, he was cheating. I’m hesitant to use the word “gaslighting” because it’s so overused these days, but that’s an incredible level of projection on his part.
yes. I also want to be clear that I do not believe infidelity is abuse. It wasn’t infidelity, it wasn’t even lying, it was actual gaslighting. There were so many times I wondered, “Why couldn’t he even lie so sweetly?” You know what I mean? He could have just done that, which was a bad thing to think about, and he wouldn’t have held so much grudge.

Because you confronted him about it and he was still trying to spin some shit on you.
I remember seeing this video that came out two weeks after I found out everything from Dr. Ramani, a psychiatrist who is on YouTube. She was talking about how people can get so obsessed with the idea of ​​catching someone who makes a light on them, that they have this delusional fantasy that once they get caught, they’re going to admit everything and apologize. I remember getting defensive watching that video because I was like, “Oh, you called me delusional because I thought once I had proof, it would become obvious.” But this is kind of true. When Keith Raniere gets arrested, he doesn’t just go, “Oh my God! Now that you’ve spelled it out for me, I can see I’m a monster.” It just confirms that he did nothing wrong.

Sophie (Nimmi Mosako), Alice (Anna Kendrick) and Tess (Canettio Horn) in “Alice, Darling.”

Lionsgate

Did your ex-boyfriend also play volleyball?
[Laughs] no he did not. Sorry, I was only watching season two [of The Vow], so obviously it’s still on my mind. There’s a kind of catharsis for me about watching someone like that stand up for the indefensible, because it oddly helps me go, “Well, anyone can make a fool of themselves.”

There is this messed up dynamic in the movie as your character’s boyfriend obsessively demands semi-exposed photos of your character when you’re apart. It appears to be his way of exerting control over her and her body.
It’s controlling behaviour, but I also think for Simon it comes from a place of desperation and terror. This thought process is part of why I love the movie-making process, and why I love the movie as a whole. Everyone was ready to see how complicated it was. Second, it becomes easy to distance yourself from her and go, “Oh, this is a bad person who does bad things, and I don’t know anyone like that.” The whole endeavor was about keeping things on a solid footing.

Is Aubrey Plaza one of the friends you leaned on when your relationship was falling apart? I remember being at Sundance years ago when the two of you were Life After Beth There the two of you looked as stupid as thieves. I was at a party with some friends and you two were dancing up a storm. Then I did Mike and Dave need wedding dates together.
I was writing with her this week. I think she’s cool and they’re both slackers, so I think it’s hard for two slackers to maintain a friendship, but I also think that’s why we still have a friendship, to a degree. We can give each other a lot of space. I remember talking to her a bit about what was going on. But even then, I bet if I read those texts, I could see I was testing things out about how much I could say before you told me, “You really should get out” — which, at the time, I’m embarrassed to say, was unacceptable to me. . I always tried to tell people what was going on in a way that they would give me magic advice, but not to the point where they would give me the truth, which was: “You have to leave.” I just couldn’t hear it.

Anna Kendrick attends the Academy Museum of Motion Picture Opening Ceremony at the Academy Museum of Motion Picture on September 25, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.

Matt Winkelmayer/WireImage

I was very young when I started out as an actor. How do you feel your career is going?
I remember my mom saying to me many years ago, “Oh, when I was your age I still felt like I was nineteen.” And I remember thinking, “Oh, I don’t.” I feel very old. I’ve lived a lot of life and I’m tired.

Because this year marks the 20th anniversary of the debut of your movie camp.
I know! It’s fucking crazy. There are times when I feel very much in the well-worn old lady era – and that’s okay! I really feel old. The output was also really refreshing. This was the most fun I’ve had in years. My ultimate dream is to be John Lithgow – wherever he goes, he seems happy to be there. I’ve spent a lot of time trying to be sober, to be perfect, and to do people’s jobs for them. But this is not altruism; It’s a stupid thing. I look at John and he seems so free. He does not think about the outcome. This was a big thing for me Alice, Darling. Every project I’ve ever made I want to get instant praise, and that ended up trying to make everyone in the video village very happy, and getting the gold star in its place. It was really scary but it was really helpful for me to do things that I knew meant people would go home and Not Thinking, “Man Anna did a great job today.” I just tried to tell the truth.

As a New Yorker, I feel obligated to ask you about Desos and Miro is divided. I’m a huge fan of them, and I know you’re friends with the show – and Desus’s. How do you feel about that?
I know! I love both. I know Desos a little better, but I love them both a lot. I think they’re cool. It’s so heartbreaking when you say, “Wait, it’s absolutely not necessary for the two of you to keep doing the show the way it is for me? How dare you!” I want them to keep making things, but I feel so sad.

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I teach at Columbia University, and a lot of college students nowadays are obsessed with it twilighteven though they were too young to watch it at the time.
Is it camp?

Maybe they haven’t been properly serviced by YA stuff in a while. Does this whole era feel like a fever dream to you?
twilight? very much like that. Very very very. At the time, I was the satellite character in those films. I can still walk down the street perfectly fine – though some of them still recognize me. I wasn’t playing a character who made people imagine vampires. At the time, she felt, “These guys have become the most famous people on the planet, and it will be like this forever.” Then they became the butt of every joke. It’s very funny to me that this is happening. this very Wild.

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