Dakota Johnson told people she was trying to buy a house when she was four

The 2021 Gotham Awards

Dakota Johnson is featured in W Magazine’s Great Performances issue, mostly for her role in The Lost Daughter. Did you see that yet? Dakota is great in it, although I would argue that Olivia Colman and Jessie Buckley are the real stars, playing the same character in different eras. While there was some energy towards “maybe Dakota should get some supporting-actress nominations,” I think Jessie is way more deserving. Still, as I said, Dakota is good in it. She plays a sexy young mother who encounters Olivia Colman’s vacationing professor. Dakota is very proud of the film, and she loves Maggie Gyllenhaal (who adapted the book and directed the film) and her costars. Some highlights from Dakota’s W piece:

How ‘The Lost Daughter’ came to her: “I read the script that Maggie Gyllenhaal wrote. And then I had a meeting with her. We had a late lunch in New York, at the Greenwich Hotel, where we immediately went, like, straight into the meat of life. And then I read with her a few weeks later in a casting office. And then she emailed me asking if I would be her Nina.

What she did when she was cast: “I cried. I didn’t scream. I just immediately cried. That was in November of 2019, and then there was the pandemic. We shot it in Greece in September and October of the next year, almost a full year later. We did hard-core quarantine—in Greece, which was not hard-core at all. Luckily we all really loved each other.

The cast partied together: “We had all sorts of parties. We had dance parties; we had hide-and-go-seek parties. Olivia [Colman] had this hotel room at the top of this hotel that was huge. So we would hang out there every night and maybe drink some wine and then end up playing really stupid games. It was crazy, surreal, beautiful, intense, and so loving. It was amazing. It was a gift.

She always wanted to be an actress: “[I knew at]Nothing old. Zero old. I couldn’t wait because I grew up on set. My parents were always working with amazing artists, and I just loved it. I wanted to be a part of it so badly. [My parents] discouraged [me]. See how well that turned out? But I understood. They wanted me to have as much of a childhood as I could.

Her first pair of heels: “I would put my mom’s high heels on all the time when I was little. And I had my own little pair of little-heeled Mary Janes that I would wear every day. Every day.

She was ready to be an adult when she was 4 years old: “I was ready to be an adult. I was 4 years old and I was like, “I’m trying to buy a house.” But it was always also like the mundane things of adulthood. Like, I wanted to go and buy cleaning supplies and stuff when I was like 6. I was like, Oh, that’s what it means to be an adult. That must be a testament to how abnormal my childhood was. Going to go call my therapist.

[From W Magazine]

I think The Lost Daughter must have been one of those good-vibes sets that actors talk about infrequently. Like, beautiful location, everyone gets along, everyone enjoys their down time, everyone is social. Dakota’s stories about being a kid and wanting to be an adult… that feels very “actor’s kid” to me. She grew up on film sets, on location with her parents, and she thought real adulthood was “living in one place, owning a home and buying cleaning supplies.” She romanticized the mundane. Sofia Coppola has similar stories. I bet the Jolie-Pitt kids will have similar stories too.


Photos courtesy of W Magazine, Netflix and Instar.

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9 Responses to “Dakota Johnson told people she was trying to buy a house when she was four”

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  1. dawnchild says:

    Her house is featured in Architectural Digest and is beautiful. Check out the video tour they posted…she’s seemed nice and unaffected too

  2. Lena says:

    Dakotas never been as beautiful as she is in that film. Everyone should have at least one moment where they are at their very peak and then get it filmed. Interestingly she seems quite the homebody now even though she works a lot. When she’s home she’s home. She and Chris have become like an old married couple now, which surprises me.

  3. Jules says:

    So they filmed and partied during covid and quarantine, when the rest of the world was shut down? How special snowflakey of them.

    • bros says:

      what’s the problem? they did a kind of perfunctory quarantine and then they played together in their offtime, like many families and pods and quarateams did during the pandemic. I don’t quite get the derision.

    • Concern Fae says:

      She talks about the hard core quarantine in the answer above that. They filmed at a resort hotel, so at least at that location, being able to keep everyone in a bubble with the space to have dance parties doesn’t seem much of a stretch. And if everyone is getting along, you don’t need strangers at the party.

    • Ry says:

      So if you were an actor and got a job on a closed set you would insist that it be a miserable time?
      This is the kind of jealous snark crap that annoys me.

  4. Lila says:

    The hide-and-go-seek story is cute. I remember the Pride and Prejudice cast (from the Keira Knightley version) also bonded by playing that game together. There’s something kind of charming and nostalgic about playing children’s games together. I can understand how it’d create those great bonds.

  5. jferber says:

    Reminds me when my daughter was 4, she told me she bought a house on the internet for $1. She really believed it, as you do when you are 4. Such memories.

  6. Bella says:

    She was great in The lost Daughter, and unrecognizable in the movie. It took me a while to figure out it was her. I liked the movie, but parts of it were uncomfortable, but I think that is the point.