SKIP: Very soon the irrevocably last part of the Twilight Saga will be released, you already finished shooting it a while ago – how exactly are you planning your future? What kind of movies would you like to make?
Kristen: Weirdly enough, I only ask myself that question during interviews (laughs). And no, I don’t plan anything, I just let things happen organically. I think in this business, it is really hard to work towards anything specific. I mean, it is a very strange occupation, to act as if you were someone else, while you are being watched by as many people as possible. It’s difficult to make any sort of plans – I always look for very special projects that really speak to me.
SKIP: And “On the Road” did speak to you apparently – even though, as you’ve stated in another interview, some people advised you against it, because the role wasn’t big enough.
Kristen: I have loved the book since I was 14, and I was sure, that Walter Salles was absolutely the right man to be directing the movie. I was sure of that from the first time I met him. Every now and then you meet people, and you know right from the beginning that you’re on the same wavelength – and that was the way with Walter and me. Even though I couldn’t really picture myself portraying Marylou – she is very, very different from me. But I had to learn to completely let go for this part. That’s something which is very difficult for me, because I hate losing control of anything. I’m an incredible control freak. I always want to know exactly who or what I am in every moment.
SKIP: How did you prepare for the role?
Kristen: Well, physically basically just by breathing, regular breathing (laughs). But seriously: I did know the book very, very well but for the movie I read a lot of secondary literature. Marylou is based on an actual person. And I found it incredibly exciting to find out who that person was.
SKIP: Walter told us that he sent his actors to a so-called “Beatnik Bootcamp”, to make them understand the unique atmosphere, in which the story takes place.
Kristen: Yes, that was fun. We all read ‘I celebrate myself’ together, the most awesome book about Allen Ginsberg. And then I learned to dance wildly, listen to the right kind of music all the while smoking too many cigarettes on the balcony. Things like that. Luckily we really did all fall in love with each other (giggles). People always say that about movies, that everybody became “one big happy family” – but I do believe no other experience can compare to all of us on “On the Road”. I have never experienced that kind of sincere closeness on a set.
SKIP: How was it for you to dive into the Beatnik-atmosphere as a young, modern woman? It is after all a world that was quite male focused.
Kristen: I don’t see it like that at all. Reading the book, one might get that impression, cause the women are only side characters. But it does represent that very special time, in which young people, women and men alike, were able to go out and find themselves, find their own family in a way and not just grow up in the surroundings they were born into. And this also means finding people that force you to challenge yourself. For me, this really was a defining idea: I told myself, I need to find people like this, people that push me like in “On the Road”. Everybody knows this: Some relationships are very comfortable. But you end up becoming lazy. I want my friends to fire me up and challenge me.