Q and A With… Anne Hathaway 2009

Here’s what actress Anne Hathaway has to say about love, the pressure to get married and why keeping good girlfriends is just as important as finding The One.

In Bride Wars, your character really seems to learn a lot about love.

Yes, she gains a new place of freedom where she’s admitting to herself that she wants more — which I think is very relatable. She wants better for herself, and that leads her to make an incredibly difficult, but ultimately wonderful decision to take control of her life. She becomes more present, more demanding and sets boundaries with people, exhibiting a more stronger and more confident personality.

The guys in the movie are gungho to say, ‘Let’s just have a double wedding.’ But then of course you wouldn’t have had a movie! In your real life, if the situation were similar, would you do the same thing?

I think that you want your friend to have that day. You want it for yourself, but it’s just like, ‘I don’t want to be diluted in my joy for you.’ I wouldn’t have a double wedding. Economically it’s fantastic, but psychologically I think you’d always be kind of pissed. I think a double wedding would cause you to analyze it too closely, read too much into it. You’d have an immediate comparison.

You got a little crazy for that bachelorette-party dance scene!

As all good comedy is painful and horrifying to actually do, I felt very protected by my character’s drunkenness. I really wanted to be a good dancer, but I’m not and so watching the movie is hard for me! I’m like, ‘I’m trying really hard and I just look silly and drunk.’ But on the day we filmed it, it was just hysterical. Unfortunately, my favorite part of the scene got cut out of the movie. I run up to Officer Not Your Husband and I did a handstand at his feet and wrapped my legs around his head and pulled myself up and then he grabbed my butt. Doing that take after take after take was so funny!

Why is there always so much emphasis on a woman getting married?

To be perfectly honest, I don’t know. It’s true. I don’t know because I don’t personally feel any pressure to get married. I don’t feel it from my family. I don’t feel it from my friends. I don’t feel it from within. So I don’t really know how to answer that question, but I’m not everyone. I don’t know whether there’s pressure on women to get married or it’s something that women put on themselves, if it’s the way that things have been done and we’re not yet in a new moment where things have transitioned into people accepting that anything goes, that you can do whatever you want. I think there’s something to be said about living the happiest life possible, but the only way that you can live a happy life specific to yourself is if you are yourself. If you’re the sort of person that never wants to get married, then never get married. Who cares? And if you’re the sort of person who really loves the idea of being committed to someone and having that piece of paper that says you’re committed to someone and celebrated it with a huge party or a quiet party, then go for it. Just be yourself. I think the important thing to note — and more so than whether or not women feel pressure to get married — is that we need to work on making it possible for everyone in America to get married.

You really have a sense from watching this film, that friendship is just as important as finding love.

You know, Kate told a story, and we all burst into tears... the point of it was that as much fun as marriage hopefully is, and as much as we all want to have the fairy tale and find that one person who fulfills us, in the end you may not be able to rely on that person. It’s a sad, sad, sad fact, but whatever happens in your life, in the great moments, the bad moments, the unexpected moments, there’s always going to be someone there refilling your wine glass, giving you a shoulder to cry on, picking you up, celebrating with you, they’re with you — and that’s your girlfriend. We didn’t find that message in the movie until much, much later and then as soon as we did, it all made sense and suddenly that’s what I related to in the movie fully. That’s when I fully gave into it. How beautiful, powerful and scary it is to mean so much to someone. How fun it is, but also how much responsibility in the best possible way…

Contributing entertainment editor Susan L. Hornik is based in Los Angeles.
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