Michelle Williams is pregnant again and ‘too tired’ to work through her pregnancy

Michelle Williams has been quiet for a few years, which is why I completely forgot about the minor scandal involving her current relationship/marriage to Thomas Kail. Michelle met Kail when they were both married to other people – Kail was married to Angela Christian and Michelle was married to Phil Elverum. Michelle and Thomas met while they worked together on Fosse/Verdon – he was her director, and soon after the project wrapped, Michelle was pregnant and they announced their engagement. I’m pretty sure Kail was still technically married when he proposed to Michelle. Well, all of that messiness at the beginning just shows that it was meant to last (or something). Michelle and Thomas welcomed son Hart in 2020, and they are expecting their second child together. Matilda Ledger, Michelle’s oldest kid, is 16. She turns 17 in October! Michelle spoke about all of this and more in her Variety cover story:

Working with indie auteur Kelly Reichardt on ‘Showing Up’: “Am I going to regret saying this? Kelly spent a lot of time on [friends’] couches. Even as a revered filmmaker, she teaches [at Bard College] to supplement her filmmaking. Because she makes films infrequently, she doesn’t have health insurance through the DGA. So, she has a theater named after her at the Sorbonne, but she has to teach to get health insurance.”

Getting the call from Steven Spielberg casting her in The Fabelmans: “We were sitting around the house in COVID, with one day looking a lot like the next, and my phone beeped, and I had a message that Steven wanted to talk to me. I couldn’t comprehend that he might want to work with me. I thought he had a question or something. Then he got on the Zoom and told me that he wanted me to play this person, his mama.”

Her family now: “It’s totally joyous. As the years go on, you sort of wonder what they might hold for you or not hold for you. It’s exciting to discover that something you want again and again is available one more time. That good fortune is not lost on me or my family.”

Giving birth during the pandemic: “It was a reminder that life goes on. The world we brought a baby into is not the world we thought we were bringing a baby into, but the baby is ignorant of that. He experiences the unmitigated joy of discovery and the happiness of a loving home.”

She’s taking a break from work during her pregnancy: “I got nothing. I wondered if I could work while I was pregnant, but I’m too tired.”

On money: “Like most women, I always had a very uneasy relationship with money. It was never a motivating factor for me. My deepest desire was to contribute artistically to a way of working and to a kind of work, and I never had any illusions that would have big dollars attached to it.”

Becoming the public face of gender pay gap in 2018, with All the Money in the World: “I grew up a lot in that moment, because doing anything in public is very difficult for me. But I felt like I was getting a clear message that I needed to stand up and deliver. I needed to ask myself, can I be a big enough, strong enough and mature enough person to see the opportunity in front of me and take it?” So, Williams threw herself into the arena. She talked to activists in the field, such as Mónica Ramírez, co-founder of the National Farmworker Women’s Alliance and head of the National Latina Equal Pay Day campaign, to learn more about the problems of pay inequity. What she came to realize was that she needed to broaden her ideas about the value of money. “I saw that it’s not just about a strict dollar amount. It’s about self-worth. It’s about establishing a market value for something. And it’s up to all of us to say this is the right amount, the fair amount.”

She’s known Jeremy Strong since 2004: After Ledger died, Strong moved into Williams’ home, along with her sister and another friend. There, he would spend hours letting Williams and Ledger’s daughter Matilda ride on his back, pretending that he was a pony. “Jeremy was serious enough to hold the weight of a child’s broken heart and sensitive enough to understand how to approach her through play and games and silliness. [Matilda] didn’t grow up with her father, but she grew up with her Jeremy and we were changed by his ability to play as though his life depended upon it, because hers did.” The blowback that Strong received after the New Yorker article was hard to witness, Williams says, and the piece was even more difficult to read. “We’ve all been in awe of his talent.We’ve watched him work harder than anyone and wait a long time for other people to recognize it. So when he became so celebrated, we all celebrated.”

[From Variety]

So many of Jeremy Strong’s co-stars and fellow actors have similar stories – that Strong is actually a very good dude who takes his job seriously and he’s someone who is lovely to his friends and coworkers. Michelle doesn’t invoke Matilda over nothing – Strong was and is someone Michelle has counted on for years, and she wants people to know that. I also respected the hell out of Michelle for what she said when her pay gap was revealed – she didn’t know she made so much less than Mark Wahlberg for the reshoots until much later, and you could tell that she was fighting her own discomfort to actually talk about money in public. She did though, and she did so eloquently.

Anyway, she sounds like she’s in a great place these days, happy with motherhood, happy with her marriage, happy with her job. Good for her.

Cover & IG courtesy of Variety.

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35 Responses to “Michelle Williams is pregnant again and ‘too tired’ to work through her pregnancy”

  1. Lili says:

    I read the headline and smiled and thought good for her, turns out oi havent been keeping up with what has been going on with her. in the end i can only wish her all the best

  2. Jo says:

    She always looks so sad. The contrast of her expression in the photo and the caption (“it’s totally joyous!”) is abyssal. She might just have sad resting face – we can’t control our features – but she’s always so melancholy.
    Love what she says about strong. I hate pile-ons as much as I hate so-called method acting.

    • Mary Tosti says:

      LOL “sad resting face”

    • michyk says:

      i always say i have resting tragedy face. i am constantly being asked what’s wrong and if people can help me with anything. which is nice. but, like, i’m fine.

    • Demona says:

      She has one of those faces that look nice in pictures but in person it’s just like WOW. I thought she was a good actor but had never gotten the fuss about her until I passed her on the street in Brooklyn maybe 10 years ago. She had a luminescence that made you look twice, like if Galadriel had a pixie cut and a scarf. You pass a lot of famous folks in NYC but she was the only one that ever made me double take.

  3. Mary-Jo says:

    That’s pregnancy in your forties .

  4. Tursiops says:

    I didn’t realize Michelle Williams was married to Hamilton and In the Heights Broadway director Tommy Kail. I’m a Lin Manuel Miranda fan, and Tommy Kail is featured heavily in the “making of” Hamilton, In the Heights and Freestyle Love Supreme. I also didn’t realize there was a messy overlap in relationships there… interesting!

    • BothSidesNow says:

      I didn’t either. How did I miss that?

      • Margot says:

        Their PR game was really good. I say that without irony. Also, both their ex’s seemed to go along with it. Which obviously helps.

      • Little Red says:

        It was covered right here on CB. They did it through People, just before the Golden Globes a few years ago, when she was no longer going to be able to hide her pregnancy.

      • Jules says:

        Very impressive PR game here. What most stuck out to me with her previous marriage to Phil is that he was recently widowed with a very young baby. She did an interview where she went on and on about how they bonded over their grief. Becoming a stepmom to an infant is no joke.
        The parts quoted here from her interview are fine, but if you read the full interview she is SO extra, blabbing about combining her DNA to create a new baby.

    • minx says:

      IIRC their relationship/baby came to light at the beginning of COVID, so it got somewhat overshadowed at the time.

    • Amanda says:

      I had no idea she had married him and has a kid with him already.

  5. mia girl says:

    I love Fosse/Verdon so much. I’ve seen it twice and reading this reminds me to put it back on my list for re-watch.

    Tommy Kail did a great job with it and both Michelle Williams and Sam Rockwell are fantastic.

  6. Doodle says:

    I have sad smiling face. I think I’m smiling hard and then I look at the photo and I’m barely grinning. I also have resting bitch face so I think it’s just how my face is. It sucks.

  7. Jess says:

    I liked what she said about the pay stuff but I am blown away by her story about Jeremy. That he stepped up in that way is incredible.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      She was so fortunate to have Strong with her during that time. It would be lovely if everyone had the same type of support, though for many it’s hard to have someone move in and help. I can’t believe Matilda is going to be 17. I appreciate her standing up for the pay gap. It’s such an enormous disgrace that women are paid so much less and it hasn’t changed much in the last 30+ years either. When you factor in WOC, the gap is even greater. It’s an atrocity that’s been carrying on for much too long.

  8. Valentina says:

    There was a bit of a mocking tone online towards people coming out and defending Jeremy Strong but I’m glad they did. There’s a very well-deserved backlash atm towards actors who use ‘method acting’ to basically be a d**k on set and it doesn’t just doesn’t sit right to include Strong in with those people.

    • Malificent says:

      From Michelle’s description, Strong sounds like a really intense guy on and off set. But intense doesn’t automatically mean unkind or deliberately disrespectful to the people around you.

  9. emmi says:

    Women need to talk about money. It’s not a dirty subject, just ask men. They certainly have no problem asking for it and most think they deserve more, no matter their salary. I understand that it’s a personal choice to stay home with the kids but being dependent on a man is so dangerous. Sure, I want to do a good job at the office and there are things that are important that have nothing to do with money but money is, in fact, very important. Who’s going to pay my rent when I’m old? I have no husband or kids, it’s on me to be as prepared as I can be.

    I hope this conversation changes with the next generation because I’m only a few years younger than Michelle and I see many women around me who are right now just happy their husbands make good money and they seem to think they’re safe. I hope they are but ladies, you are making me hella nervous.

    • LooseSeal says:

      It sounds like we’re the same age and I truly believe it is changing. I’m in leadership in a PR firm and seeing the way the young women advocate for themselves is amazing. They’re always incredibly prepared, know what the market supports and how it aligns with their experience and contribution. I’m proud to say I work for a place that is intentional about pay equity, but the young women almost always get what they ask for because their reasoning is air tight. I’ve learned a lot from them honestly.

      • emmi says:

        I‘m glad to hear that. Most women I know do go back to work (it’s hard, I wish it were made easier for them and I am German so we do have maternity leave etc) but they don’t really pay attention to their salary anymore. Maybe because they think they aren’t working full time and can’t negotiate. Not sure. And I get it. A baby is such a happy time and your focus is not at work. Two of my younger colleagues give me hope, they know exactly what they want and what they can demand.

  10. Southern Fried says:

    I will never forget her riveting performance in Brokeback Mountain.
    In fact Heath and Jake are also at the top of their game in it. I can never not mention director Ang Lee and the cinematography. A top 10 for me.

  11. Diamond Rottweiler says:

    Given how many serious artists/writers would kill to have a cushy 2-2 with benefits teaching gig at a posh liberal arts college like Bard close to the city, and who get to teach young minds about art, I can’t make out what her point is about Kelly Reichardt. The Nobel Laureate in Literature I PAed for had a teaching gig! What was that story supposed to illustrate?

    • Waitwhat says:

      The arbitrariness of making a living from the creative arts? I guess she was saying that Kelly should make enough money from her films because she (Michelle) thinks they’re great? I mean, it’s astonishing to me that Mark Wahlberg (who’s a terrible actor in my view) is not only paid for being in films but paid in the millions! But that’s the way it goes.

      I’m also not sure how cushy teaching at Bard would be, even if you’re lecturing on something “fun” like film. HE is a notoriously stressful environment and I bet those Bard students want their money’s worth 😛

    • HeatherC says:

      Bard is not “close” to the city. It’s a near 2 hour drive.

      • Diamond Rottweiler says:

        To clarify, I mean it’s an easy commute, as opposed to artists of similar CV and caliber teaching in Ann Arbor and Austin, etc.

  12. Concern Fae says:

    She’s made 7 films in the last 16 years, so she’s reasonably prolific. I think she’s choosing to spend her non Hollywood time in academia to balance her income, rather than chasing development deals for films that won’t get made, but will earn points towards DGA health insurance. Probably better for her sanity.

    When you hear that someone has a first look or production deal someplace, one of the functions of that is to pay various people enough to keep their Guild insurance. Kelly is doing Bard instead of this grind.

  13. J says:

    Wow, I’ve never been a fan of her (she comes across as very twee), but I love everything she said here. Congrats on her pregnancy!

  14. Div says:

    She seems like she is in a good place.

    Also it was so weird how film twitter kept acting like all of Jeremy Strong’s co-stars must hate him when multiple co-stars/friends have spoken very positively of him.

  15. H says:

    Seriously, again with the Jeremy Strong thing. The way celebrities talk about it, you’d think they killed the guy. I guess they don’t like it when people stop buying their shit lol.

  16. VoominVava says:

    I am happy for her. She has been through some STUFF. She is gorgeous and seems very calm and sweet.
    She is someone who looks better with short hair. I love it on her so much. I also love that she said Heath liked it that way and that’s why she kept it originally.

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