Jennifer Lawrence: ‘You don’t have to be an a-hole to get things done’

Something I realized lately is that Jennifer Lawrence is wearing other designers besides Dior for her red carpet appearances. Of all the celebrity fashion contracts, only Margot Robbie’s doomed stint with Chanel has yielded worse results to me. Jennifer’s essence is so casual and breezy. Dior is too prim and proper for her. I’ve liked some of her non-Dior looks while she’s promoting her new comedy, No Hard Feelings (although this look was kind of an abomination). Comedy seems like such a perfect fit for Jennifer, I hope she gets to do more of them. She was interviewed by Cameron Diaz for Interview mag, and it seems like they are buddies. They talked about the lack of R-rated comedies in recent years, how motherhood has affected Jennifer’s career, and how she runs her production company, Excellent Cadaver, with her producing partner and friend Justine. Jennifer’s really proud of No Hard Feelings and it totally shows.

Jennifer feels like she’s found a new “sweet spot” with comedy:

DIAZ: Okay. I’m super excited about No Hard Feelings. This is something you were born to do, hard R comedies. It might be your sweet spot.

LAWRENCE: Whatever I was feeling while making that movie, if that’s my sweet spot, then I don’t ever want to do anything else.

There aren’t enough comedies aimed at adults:

DIAZ: That comes down to, why are not that many of those comedies being made? What is wrong with the audience or society?

LAWRENCE: We just need the laugh right now, because we’re living in a nightmare. I snuck into one of the test screenings, and being surrounded by people laughing makes things funnier. It’s not the same when you’re alone in your living room.

Motherhood has made Jennifer more selective about what projects she does:

DIAZ: So how is it for you in-between projects? Especially now that you’re a mom, are you feeling like you want to spend time at home? Or does it feel like you can still squeeze in a project here and there?

LAWRENCE: There’s no squeezing when you have a baby. There’s just home, and it’s the best. It definitely helps weed out projects: “Yes. No. Yes. No. Yes. No. Is this worth being away from my child for half the day?”

How she gets things done with her producing partner, Justine Ciarrocchi:

LAWRENCE: …I’ve worked with people where it’s a good cop and a bad cop. Justine and I like to think that it’s good cop, good cop. You don’t have to be an asshole to get things done.

DIAZ: Absolutely. I kind of shy away from the question of, is it because you’re both women? But do you feel like women approach problem-solving in a different way than men do?

LAWRENCE: Women have been welcomed—I don’t want to say welcomed—allowed, into more parts of the industry. I can’t speak for every woman but there’s this extra gusto. You want to prove yourself, and you’ve had to do everything the hard way for a really, really long time. So you’re just used to not being able to ask somebody to do something for you.

[From Interview Magazine]

I think what Jennifer’s saying about being a woman rings true in just about any industry. We have to work harder at baseline to be taken seriously. But Hollywood seems to really attract and protect toxic men in positions of power. It always has. (See also: Louis B. Mayer.) For most of the industry’s history, the unofficial mantra has been, “you have to be an a–hole to get things done/make great art.” It will be interesting to see if production companies like Jennifer’s can meaningfully change that. I didn’t realize that her company, Excellent Cadaver, produced the documentary Bread and Roses. It’s a film about what women in Afghanistan are going through under the Taliban. I know it premiered in France but I’m unsure if it’s been picked up by a distributor. Anyway it’s interesting to see that Jennifer’s company produced a film like that and a raunchy sex comedy. That’s range.

I’ve never been one for “hard R” comedies, honestly–it just isn’t my vibe. But I do think it’s perfect for Jennifer. She can do screwball raunchy comedy in her sleep. No wonder she’s so proud of this movie. Am I going to watch it? Probably not. Am I going to continue to refer to it as the Buick Movie? Yes. Am I happy Jennifer’s happy? Also yes.

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3 Responses to “Jennifer Lawrence: ‘You don’t have to be an a-hole to get things done’”

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  1. AngryJayne says:

    I love indie talkfest comedies just as much as a good R rated comedy – but I think the last one I saw (in theaters) was Deadpool? Maybe?

  2. LaurenAPMT says:

    I’m very impressed by the concept of “Bread and Roses”. I’m friends with a number of Afghani refugee women, and the Taliban’s oppression of women is SUCH an important topic to cover. Hopefully the film does it justice.

  3. Ciotog says:

    We wanted to go to the movies recently and there was nothing for adults. So we stayed home and watched Never Have I Ever instead.