Jennifer Lawrence is only 22, but she has already been nominated for a best actress Academy Award, for Winter’s Bone, and starred in two blockbuster franchises. She was nude and blue as Mystique in X-Men: First Class, and in The Hunger Games she played Katniss Everdeen, the ultimate heroine for a dystopic age. In November, she stars in Silver Linings Playbook, a romantic comedy about emotionally damaged people.
You play a rather crazy widow in Silver Linings. Technically, you are
too young to play that character. Did you have to audition?
I did. But I didn’t mind. People always worry that I’m wrong for the part: I’m usually too young—or, in the case of Katniss, they thought I was too old. I was blonde, and Katniss is brunette. So many problems. There were a lot of things that we just brushed under the rug.
The climax in Silver Linings is a big dance scene with Bradley Cooper,
who plays your would-be boyfriend. Could you dance before this movie?
I’m such a bad dancer [laughs]. I don’t have many talents: I’m not a good cook, I can’t clean, and I can’t sew. The only thing I can do well is shoot bow and arrow—which I learned to do for The Hunger Games and will probably never come in handy—and act. Imagine me 100 years ago: I would have been pointless.
You could have acted! Although there weren’t movies like X-Men back
then. Did you have to get naked and blue for the X-Men audition?
Not for the audition, but there was a moment where I thought I was going to have to paint my face and Skype with the director, and I said no. The first test where they painted me blue took around eight hours of makeup. I would stand, lean, or sit on a bicycle seat naked while they painted me. I have no modesty left after X-Men— I had blue in places I didn’t even know existed. Afterward, I had to go around naked, with scales over my private parts, surrounded by men. That cures you of all inhibition.
Did you end up hating blue?
Not really, but I did leave the color everywhere. The hotel in London wouldn’t give me my security deposit back because I turned their tub blue. I also did that to a lot of toilet seats on set. We called it “getting Mystiqued.”
After filming X-Men, you went straight into Oscar
madness. Did you have fun at the Academy Awards?
It’s an honor and an overwhelming compliment, but it’s also a kind of bizarre thing. All of a sudden you’re at these parties and everybody’s famous, and you feel like a loser. By the time of the actual Oscars, I was so sick of fittings and trains and corsets and people asking “What are you going to wear?” I had to go on a diet, because at all the parties there’s champagne and hors d’oeuvres. I ate so much! I think I wore two Spanx on the night of the awards.