Sienna Miller on herself & Britney Spears: ‘Everyone in the culture was complicit’

Sienna Miller stuns at the '21 Bridges' premiere in NYC

Sienna Miller is still promoting Wander Darkly, a drama with a plot which is very hard to describe. So hard to describe, Sienna still hasn’t figured out a two-sentence teaser for it, so I know I can’t do it either. This was the film Sienna was promoting with her Daily Beast interview, where she chatted about the old days of Jude Law and It Girl-ness, but glossed over the Rhys Ifans and Balthazar Getty years, which (imo) were just as formative, gossip-wise, as the Jude years. Sienna chats here with the Guardian, and there are more references to the whole craziness of 2003-2008. She talks about the Leveson Inquiry, suing the British tabloids and negotiating like a man:

Watching Framing Britney Spears. “Everyone in the culture was complicit in what was being done to girls in that moment. I was definitely a victim of that, and I couldn’t handle it. I don’t know how anyone could. It was assault. And I think the reaction from a lot of women under that kind of scrutiny at the time was to just lose it a little bit. You’re in a perpetual state of anxiety. You’re living this video-game existence, being hunted relentlessly. Watching the documentary, I could really relate to those moments where she cracks because it’s unmanageable. It is aggressive and terrifying and you lose control. That’s their intention.”

She could have adapted her behavior: “I could have not gone out. Or not worn what I wanted. I could have changed my life in some way. I just took them all to court instead.”

She takes credit for inventing boho chic?? “You probably have Ugg boots, disc belts and peasant tops in your cupboard without knowing why. And you’re welcome. [Fans] say: ‘I love your style!’ And I think: ‘What about my films?’”

Her performance in Factory Girl. “I think my performance was appreciated, but the noise of everything else was louder. It was, like: ‘She can’t possibly be good and be doing all these other things.”

On Wander Darkly: “It felt really clunky to make, and it took a lot of persuasion from the director to reassure us that this was not an absolute disaster. I felt lost, which served my character’s state of mind. I was hoping for a miracle in the edit. There was a crew member outside with a hosepipe spraying the water into the garage. I was barefoot, and the director was saying: ‘This will turn into the sea.’ And I was just looking at this man with a hose, and saying to myself: ‘There is no way, with the budget we have, that this is going to work.’ It required so much trust, and I did waver. I should’ve relaxed more.”

On paychecks: “I can tell you that Diego [Luna, her Wander Darkly costar] and I basically got nothing. With an independent film, you’re not doing it for the pay cheque.” Studios are another story. “When a studio is involved and it’s a demanding schedule and you know you’ll be leaned on heavily in the press tour, then I do believe that women should be compensated more than they have been in the past. I never really advocated for that before because I was always so f–king grateful to be working.”

On Chadwick Boseman fighting for her to paid properly: “His act of generosity was incredibly validating. It was a total anomaly in Hollywood for someone to behave that way. But it was also very true to who the man was.”

Negotiate like a man: “I spoke to my agents and my lawyer, who are all women, and I said: ‘OK, I’m going to go in and negotiate as if I’m a man.’ I had to get myself into the mindset of being male to even have those discussions. That’s another product of the patriarchy we’ve grown up in. It’s depressing that we accepted that, along with all the advances and the misogyny. We took it because that’s what we were raised in. But the world is changing.”

[From The Guardian]

I absolutely had a flashback to when Sienna was filming Factory Girl in Pittsburgh and she referred to the city as “Sh-tsburgh” in an interview and the people in Pittsburgh were so mad that Sienna actually had to make some kind of, like, hostage video apology with the mayor of Pittsburgh. Sure, it was publicity for the film, but I’m not sure it was GOOD publicity. But that was honestly what everything was like back then. Sienna was rude in an interview, and it gets blown up into a huge thing and suddenly no one is really talking about the film. As for Sienna relating to Britney Spears… it’s crazy that Sienna’s story was playing out in the exact same timeline as Britney’s. And it was a f–ked up moment to be a famous blonde with personal drama. Last thing: Sienna didn’t invent boho chic, she only popularized it, for the love of God. That was Goop-esque.

Sienna Miller shows off her rumored engagement ring as she hails a cab

Photos courtesy of Backgrid.

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35 Responses to “Sienna Miller on herself & Britney Spears: ‘Everyone in the culture was complicit’”

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  1. Anners says:

    The smug is so strong with her. I’ve never liked her. While I have a better understanding now of the immense pressure young women were put under at that time (as a young woman myself I just didn’t get it), I still haven’t changed my opinion about her.

    • ElleV says:

      agreed – the SMUGOSITY of this woman is surpassing goop levels

      ‘you probably have ugg boots without knowing why… you’re welcome’ is such a rip from the devil wears prada, just like she ripped off ugg boots from aussies who had been wearing them forEVER

      or peasant blouses… which literally have the origins of the style IN THE NAME, not to mention they had already been a fashun thing (even for rich white ladies which i guess are the only peeps sienna’s counting) before she was born

  2. Nicole says:

    Let me tell you I was very Pittsburgh adjacent during the Factory Girl years. Yinzers don’t play. She was complicit in her narrative. She was an arrogant starlet and had told the locals she was a “world famous actress”. Pittsburghers did not give a shit. She could have had a ball and really gotten to be part of the city. It’s a beautiful town. I won’t lie, I never really gave her a pass for that. The black and gold run deep.

    • Evenstar says:

      I lived in Pittsburgh for years for school, and I was always impressed by the passion people had for their city. I get very defensive of it since moving away, as people have a weird, outdated view of it being some abandoned, decaying ruin after the steel industry left. The rest of the country could learn a lot from Pittsburgh about reinvention and pivoting and coming out stronger.

      • Victoria says:

        As a Philadelphian I grew up with the mentality that I HAVE to hate Pittsburgh, it’s the sports rivalry. My cousin went to uni there and my bestie went as well but transferred after a semester because right…We told her ass she would not like it.

        When I actually visited there, I had a reason to continue to hate it.

        After going to college upstate, I vowed never to travel to any other part of Pennsylvania that isn’t directly adjoined to Philadelphia county. My Philly ass was not ready.

    • emu says:

      My mom is from Cleveland and one of the many things I love about Clevelanders is their sense of humor about themselves. Everyone denigrates Cleveland and probably none more than those from Cleveland themselves. I feel like it’s very similar to Pittsburgh in that people don’t really know how great it actually is there. I think “Shitsburgh” is funny… (although I’m sure she didn’t mean it that way – or you probably have to have a connection to it to make that kind of joke) just like I think “Mistake on the Lake” is funny…. I also have a shirt that says “Cleveland! It isn’t so bad. Have a beer.” haha

      • Courtney B says:

        I had a negative view towards Cleveland until I had to visit in December 2019. I loved it! I’d hoped to return in 2020 but it didn’t happen for obvious reasons. A great city.

    • Dss says:

      As a fellow Pittsburgher, I’ll also chime in. She tried the “Don’t you know who I am?”
      Our collective answer was either “yes/no, but don’t care. Get you boho ass to the back of the line. ”

      We don’t play those games here.

  3. lanne says:

    Man I remember how hard they pushed her. She was on the September vogue that was featured in the September Issue. She was one of the women Weinstein pushed. She was a mediocre blond girl being called an Icon. She probably thinks she did invent boho chic, even though it was the style all the thin blond women were wearing.

    She also had her home defaced with graffiti and was chased by a pack of male photographers down a street. Being an it girl was a sucky thing to be. Yes, she got opportunities she didn’t really deserve, but the cost of that pedestal was relentless scrutiny. People thought the vicious treatment of women in entertainment was the “price they paid”. Like you could be beautiful and desirable and successful but the scorn and shaming and hate was the legitimate cost. Sucky times.

    Did she make bad relationship decisions, including very public cheating scandals? Yes, and she said stupid things. She was called out for them, rightly so. But what troubles me looking back at that era is the absolute glee people felt in watching these women getting pushed off of their pedestals. Living through that as an early 20 something must have been insane. You’re young and dumb enough to believe all the crap people are telling you about being “so hot right now”, completely unaware that those same people are sharpening their knives and waiting to just flay you when you tumble off the pedestal. That’s a lot of punishment for what we’re essentially dumb young women doing dumb things.

    • Renata says:

      I still cringe at how we talked about Weinstein’s It Girls. I remember all the snickering about what “they did” to get that status when in truth we should have been focused on what he was doing to them to “reward” them with that status. I remember the appalling stories about Gretchen Mol and how it was somehow her fault that the stories had her being passed around by this old obese narcissist. She denied that she was ever a victim during MeToo and I can only believe her but add that it wouldn’t surprise me if she just said that because she didn’t want to be run through the mill yet again.

    • Darla says:

      I want to applaud this post.

    • lucy2 says:

      Very well said.
      I have never had interest in her as an actor and I think she’s said a lot of obnoxious stuff, but at the same time, she was built up to be torn down, in a way that just does not happen to men.

    • The Recluse says:

      I remember how hard they were trying to make her ‘happen’ in the industry and she seemed to play along with it until it all became too intrusive. Being in the goldfish bowl is never fun and she made some pretty bad choices that did not help if she wanted anyone to take her career seriously. I remember considering her a bit of a dilettante about being an actress as compared to someone she worked with on stage: Helen McCrory, who was respected and was still true to herself.

  4. Renata says:

    I remember those days and people were absolutely evil about her. That said, I’m ready for this reckoning to spread past these pretty blondes. Halle and Whitney and Jlo and the Williams sisters and Naomi etc were also living that time and they got it both from the misogynists and the racists. It’s funny how that racism is still keeping people from acknowledging what they did to them. Jlo is getting some but she’s white adjacent so no wonder. I mean people always bitched that Beyonce was “too perfect” – she had to be! You think she’d have survived if she’d spent even once stumbled out of a club??? Beyonce 2005 would be OVER if she’d started an affair with a married man or married a guy in Vegas or whatever.

    • Otaku fairy says:

      So true. Not that she’s obligated to be an open book, but a lot of crap was directed at Beyonce too. It’s to be expected from the right, but not all of it came from them. She’s also gotten blamed for societal problems and violent acts that just are NOT her fault, based on people’s unwillingness to get with the times on several issues. A lot of that was just 3-7 years ago. The other day someone brought up Sulli and Goo Hara too, and mentioned how this kind of misogyny isn’t something that stopped with Britney.

    • AMA1977 says:

      This is so true. It’s no wonder she’s so controlled and has her real life all locked up; that, along with the talent and the beauty and the social consciousness and the philanthropy and the achievement still hasn’t spared her from racially-motivated hate.

  5. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I’m fairly certain the 60s introduced boho cravings.

  6. Digital Unicorn says:

    Ah a glimpse of the old Sienna – that smug entitledness.

    She wanted fame and got it – she and her publicist at the time were well known for tipping the paps off. I guess it’s a tale of be careful what you wish for – it bit her on the ass and yeah she was hounded/baited by them.

    As for fashion, I remember all the stories basically calling her out for cosplaying Kate Moss – this was during the time when she had just got with Law and was desperate to be a part of the Primrose Hill set, who were a thing at that time.

  7. Sof says:

    I watched Factory Girl a few years ago. I don’t know if it was Sienna’s performance or the tragedy of that time period in Edie’s life, but the scene where she is in bed being filmed naked while that other guy is stealing her cuttlery broke my heart. Every now and then that image comes to my mind and I immediately get sad.
    Lol at her thinking she invented boho chic, perhaps she believed people who tried to flatter her back in the day. I mean, when people were praising Alexa Chung for her style she wondered if no one had heard of Jane Birkin, Jean Shrimpton or Francoise Hardy.

  8. Victoria says:

    Bitch bye. Don’t compare yourself to Britney. You were cheating on the person who was cheating on his wife with you.

    You got caught.

    And you got dragged.

    What happened to Britney was something totally different.

  9. February-Pisces says:

    I loved sienna in factory girl, her performance was incredible, everytime I see that film I just wanna dress up like Edie Sedgwick. Sienna does have great style and always looks effortlessly amazing. I think her acting career has struggled cos women don’t like her. She has that ‘I can steal your man’ vibe to her so female audiences won’t root for her. It’s the same with megan fox.

    She has been treated appallingly by the press, but the public won’t really understand that. They just think ‘well your pretty and date famous men, so who cares’. The whole media is designed to scrutinise women, especially really attractive ones.

  10. fabulousfunster says:

    She didn’t invent boho she ripped her style from Kate Moss.

  11. D says:

    The Pittsburgh issue was when she was filming Mysteries of Pittsburgh, but it was around the Factory Girl time. I think she was young and being told she was the next big thing so she had a big ego but at the same time she was absolutely hounded and had her phone hacked and god knows what else done to her. She wasn’t the brightest at the time but I do think she is a decent actress and I’m glad she seems to have gotten her life together.

  12. ce says:

    I just watched factory girl again very recently. My perspective on a lot of what I liked in that film changed a lot, I hate Andy Warhol’s character now and wish the film had really leaned into how he exploited and then disposed of Edie instead of just sensationalizing her demise. The childhood abuse needed more screening too. But Sienna does SO WELL in the role, it’s a perfect, hypnotizing, perfect fit for her

  13. Meg says:

    My feelings too

  14. Meg says:

    Im sorry but her heartlessness to parade around years ago with a married man, no way theyre not seeing the photographers and hearing from people in their life the press theyre generating, topless on a beach him groping her and then when asked later if she regretted it would she behave differently? she said no, if she likes someone even if theyre not single she’ll go for it if the guy is into it.
    Im sure many cheat but to draw attention to yourself like that, picking outdoor tables
    at restaurants instead of a private one so photos will be taken etc no discretion on their part they were shameless. I just have a hard time thinking much of her

  15. candy says:

    Girl please, you got dragged for being the opposite of an ally to women. Nothing you say about or for women really counts now. Her movies (what little I’ve seen) are so boring to me. She was never really that famous, right? I do remember her embarrassing affair, like one picture. That’s about it. Britney experienced global superstardom at a very young age.

  16. Maryscott O'Connor says:

    And look at all the comments attacking her as if we’ve learned ABSOLUTELY NOTHING from the Framing Britney doc.

    It’s incredible. People (women, especially) just love attacking women like her. Pretty, rich, thin… god forbid she says ANYTHING that comes across as entitled or smug – even if that’s not at all the way she meant it… My god, we are such a shit species.

    • Otaku fairy says:

      +1 To your first paragraph. Hopefully Britney Spears doesn’t just end up being the new ‘Perfect Victim’ or relative privation tool used to silence other women about misogynistic abuse and its impact on their mental health. Obviously not every situation is going to be identical, but it shouldn’t have to be.
      Also, LoLz at the concern-trolling about Britney losing something if the conversation expands beyond her to include other girls and women. We know what that’s really about. “That could put ME in an unflattering light! There’s a special place in hell for anyone expressing concern for people ME no likes.”

  17. Betsy says:

    I don’t feel complicit in what happened back then. I didn’t consume gossip. I didn’t click. I didn’t buy. I was not remotely playing the game.