Carey Mulligan: ‘I’m very happy to say that I’m Christian and I go to church’

Carey Mulligan is mostly flying under the radar as an Oscar nominee this year, maybe because the Best Actress race is currently a giant mess and if there is an upset, it will be Lily Gladstone losing to Emma Stone. Sandra Huller – who should have been the leading contender in the Oscar race – has barely campaigned, so Carey is sort of stepping into the void of “just happy to be here” nominees. And Carey is genuinely happy to be here. Her nomination for Maestro is her third Oscar nom, all in the lead category. She’s probably right up there with one of the best actresses to never win an Oscar. Carey recently chatted with the Times of London about the nomination, her marriage to Marcus Mumford and her religion:

She watched the Oscar nominations announcement live in the UK: She watched this year’s Oscar nominations announcement live, with her “heart racing”, in the Devonshire farmhouse that she shares with her husband, the singer-songwriter Marcus Mumford (of Mumford & Sons). He had placed round the TV screen Post-it notes containing encouraging mottos such as “You’re great!” just in case. The Oscar nomination, she says, “is just the coolest thing. Because it’s from your peers. It’s wicked.” And the thousands (literally) of actors that I’ve met who say that awards don’t matter and that it’s the work that counts? “They are 100 per cent lying.”

On the ‘Barbie’ Oscar snubs: “I’m gutted for Greta because I don’t know what else you can do as a director to get nominated. You make a critically acclaimed film that’s also an incredible global success, and yet you don’t get nominated?”

On the ‘Saltburn’ Oscar shutout: “I went to the Saltburn premiere in LA and I sat with Em and there were 1,700 people having just the greatest f***ing experience, so I don’t know. I think the main takeaway is just how incredibly it was picked up. Initially, people didn’t know how to respond and then suddenly it took over the internet and now it’s become this enormous phenomenon where you can buy candles [on Etsy and Amazon] called Jacob Elordi’s Bathwater.”

Bradley Cooper made her stop hanging out with the crew & joking around: “I always loved being one of the lads with the crew, and I never wanted to isolate myself from people by doing anything excruciating like staying in your dialect between takes,” she says. Cooper, apparently, disabused her of this notion. “He said, ‘There’s no other way to do this, you cannot flip between these two people.’”

She’s fine with talking about her husband, Marcus Mumford: “I find it easier now because when we were first married I was really conscious of thinking, ‘I am not part of a celebrity couple. That’s just weird.’ And we were both trying to build our careers in our own rights.” She says that the “no marriage questions” policy has outlived its usefulness or relevance, especially now, “when we’ve been married for ever, and he came to the Golden Globes with me, and I bring him to the big things because it’s just more fun when he’s there”.

She & Marcus met at a kids’ Christian camp: “I don’t think I would describe myself as super-super-Christian. But I was definitely brought up going to church and I still go to church, but it’s not, like, a hot topic. I’m very happy to say that I’m Christian and I go to church.”

She’s not a cinephile: She was, and still is, “not a cinephile in any way. To this day I’ll make time to watch The Traitors, but I’m not watching lots of films.” She’s also an award-winning theatre actress, but, she says, having three children under eight mostly rules out a return to the stage. “It would have to be in a school holiday window.I thought it would be harder when they were little to do it, but missing bedtime at the end of the day, when your children are a little bit older, is trickier.”

[From The Times]

Re: her comments about Greta Gerwig, there’s this really weird thing being done on the internet where, whenever anyone talks about how disgusting it is that Gerwig and Margot Robbie were snubbed, certain people are like “stop talking about them, you should be paying more attention to the people who were nominated!” And then the actual nominees are inevitably like “wow, those Barbie snubs were f–king brutal and sexist.” Juliet Triet did it too, so did other nominees. I think the Barbie-haters have really underestimated what a big deal it is that Gerwig was snubbed especially. And Carey is right – those awards matter, the industry approval matters, and people are lying when they say the noms or awards don’t matter. That’s why the snubs matter too.

As for what she says about needing to stay in character on Maestro… like, I understand the technical reasons for it, but Bradley Cooper always sounds like such a douche as a director. While I know Lady Gaga played up the stories about him, he was an a–hole to her too. Also: I did not know that she’s quite Christian, but I’ve noticed that she talks more about Marcus these days and they’re more open now. I think that’s really nice.

Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.

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45 Responses to “Carey Mulligan: ‘I’m very happy to say that I’m Christian and I go to church’”

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  1. Kokiri says:

    Bradley “I never sit” Cooper is a lot. A LOT.

    There’s so many incredible actors & directors! Why give to unworthy people!

    Anyway, I don’t watch her movies & won’t watch Maestro either. But I like what she has to say about Greta.

    • Mia4s says:

      “Bradley “I never sit” Cooper is a lot. A LOT.”

      And even funnier is that he tried to relate it to how Chris Nolan runs his sets, only for it to come out that the things about Nolan and no chairs wasn’t true at all (he just doesn’t allow them around the main monitor, he and everyone else can otherwise have chairs and sit when and where they want). There’s funny interview footage of him laughing with Cillian and RDJ about it.

      Bradley…if Christopher Nolan is making you look uptight? Calm down dude.

    • Prairiegirl says:

      You’re not missing anything. Maestro was mind numbingly boring IMHO.

      • Whatever says:

        I would say you’re missing out by not having watched Promising Young Woman. That movie is extraordinary, and she’s incredible in it.

    • mel says:

      Bradly Cooper is INCREDIBLY thirsty. I think i can safely say that the will not be winning this Oscar . His behavior around this movie is UNHINGED. I’m not a fan of Carey Mulligan’s do you and no one cares if you ‘re Christian and you go to church. Lots of people are Christian and go to church, they don’t feel they need to share.

  2. Ameerah M says:

    I find the way Bradley tries to control the women in his films really disturbing. He did it with Gaga and it sounds like he did it with Carey. Dictating who people can talk to when the cameras aren’t rolling (and it’s the CREW – not other actors) is gross. And it also leads me to believe that he wasn’t very nice to the crew if he didn’t want Carey engaging with them. He clearly thought there was a separation – which is usually a sign of a director thinking less of the people behind the camera. Just gross overall.

    • Kokiri says:

      You said exactly what I was thinking but couldn’t articulate.

      He obviously thinks he’s the ruler & the crew peasants.

    • TQ says:

      Totally agree @Ameerah. Bradley Cooper sounds like a controlling asshole to actresses he directs. This anecdote from Carey Mulligan about who she can and cannot talk to on set? And that anecdote about wiping the makeup off Lady Gaga’s face when they’d just met during her audition? FFS.

    • AlpineWitch says:

      EXACTLY!! He comes across as a controlling douche, telling Carey not to hang out with the ‘peasants’. He’s ridiculous.

    • fineskylark says:

      Yeah, I really feel like that tells me everything I need to know about him.

    • La Dolce Vita says:

      @Ameerah M
      Totally agree.
      And also I could not support any of Bradley Cooper’s output anyway after he made that horrifically racist film “American Sniper”.

  3. Honey says:

    I’m glad to see someone publicly be proud of their faith — whatever their faith may be. I’m kind of the opinion that Christianity, especially in the US, sometimes becomes associated with far-right evangelicals. The way the Christian faith is practiced is pretty diverse. And she didn’t just crow her faith unprovoked. It was in the context of attending Christian summer camp and meeting her husband there. And this comment is NOT discounting non-Christian faiths and people who don’t believe in a higher power. Just a comment on Carey Mulligan.

    • Persephone says:

      @Honey agree 💯

    • Emily says:

      It’s nice to see some normal Christian representation. I’m Catholic but tend to be secretive about it because I’ve had too many people assume that I’m a dickhead.

    • Sass says:

      Not sure how many die- hard Christian’s there are in Hollywood, @phly – so don’t think her comments are trying to appeal to them .

      And, Agree with you @honey.
      Nice to see someone proud of their Christian faith, in a non confrontational, and judgemental way.

    • Kitten says:

      Mumford & Sons is known as exploring religious themes in their music but Marcus Mumford has explicitly said that they are “fans of faith, not religion” which is a pretty common attitude in the UK, France, and some western European countries where religion isn’t thrown in your face like it is in the US.

      That being said, the banjo player in M&S took the mask off and praised Andy Ngo, the RW fascist Nazi creep so…eh.

      • Jenn says:

        Yeah, tbh my heart dropped at her comments—“christofascism” would explain their association with the far-right band member. I’m down with Jesus, but I’d be distraught if she were, like, a God-and-country sectarian isolationist.

    • Emme says:

      Sooooo 💯 agree, @Honey!

    • Mario says:

      @Honey, I couldn’t agree more. Evangelicals and the religious right have cornered the market on “public” Christianity, stealing all the headlines and positioning themselves to to comment and opine. The more Orthodox and extreme in all faiths seem to do this and suck all the air.

      I grew up a typical liberal American Catholic and still go to Mass every week. Most the Catholics I know personally (family, my own parish, co-workers) fit that traditional socially liberal, mold, and that’s even who got selected, generally, Pope. But who dominates the race to self-identify as Catholic and opine on EVERYTHING (it’s so exhausting)? Conservative Bishops, priests, and people like Steve Bannon who fund and organize campaigns to undermine the Pope and keep Dem politicians from communion. I see its even worse for my Baptist friends, and others.

      Is it any wonder fewer and fewer people want to be associated with faith and religion?

      Good people who are people of faith — who aren’t “glassbowls” — should be proud like Mulligan, able to casually talk about it and own their faith. We need to stop letting the jerks who really are the minority, but are loud AF, set the conversation. And we can do it not by being equally boorish, but just by not shying away from it out of shame of association.

      I like how she handled this.

  4. Phlyfiremama says:

    As a die-hard atheist, all this says to me is that she is appealing to those who identify as Christians to vote for her because she is, too!! That is such a Weird thing to include.

    • Lilpeppa40 says:

      I respectfully disagree tho. It came up in the context of how she met her husband (at a youth Christian camp) and she went on to say she’s not super Christian (which I read to mean extremist) but she is one and goes to church and she’s proud of it. Nothing wrong with it at all in my view and I didn’t get a vote for me cuz I’m Christian vibe.

    • Lulu says:

      Eh, she answered a question then expanded a bit. If she answered they met at a kid’s camp, then I would feel like she was hiding the Christianity part.

    • Fabiola says:

      If someone could be a proud atheist why can’t someone be a proud Christian? She’s saying how they met and she goes to church. I go to church Every week too and I’m married to an atheist. Everyone should be respectful of each others believes.

  5. DeeSea says:

    Carey Mulligan is fantastic actor, and I appreciate that she chooses somewhat offbeat roles. Her part in Saltburn was small but powerfully poignant. I have no interest in seeing Maestro (or anything else involving B-Coop), but I’m always excited to see what Carey Mulligan has coming up. And I also LOVE The Traitors! I just finished watching all of the US and international versions I could find, and now I want more!

  6. sunny says:

    Yeah, this isn’t surprising at all, especially the parts about her faith. I think it was known for years that she and Marcus met as kids and it had to do with the church in some way.

    Secondly, there is a strain of Christianity that is present in Mumford and Sons work to the point I always assumed that some of the band must be pretty spiritual. Often people who are devout marry people with a similar level of faith which makes sense to me in terms of making a relationship work and shared values.

    Yeah, this tracks.

    • Normades says:

      I am surprised just because Carey is English so really interested to know what church they go to. Like Church of England?
      I honestly thought Mumford and sons were American (don’t like their music always thought of them as a more folksy Coldplay).
      But different strokes for different folks and if faith is a big part of their lives and it works for them yay.
      She has been looking great, the styling has been wonderful and she seems to be enjoying herself so big yay!
      Also her comment about Greta is 💯

  7. Mtl.ex.pat says:

    I find the phrasing odd (I’m very happy to say I’m Christian). Can’t put my finger on why. But it jumped out at me for some reason.

    • Bumblebee says:

      Yes, like she was criticized for not saying she was Christian, for not supporting her church. I think she was trying to emphasize that she is not embarrassed or trying to hide her beliefs.

      • Malificent says:

        I think it’s the opposite — Cary is trying to avoid being stereotyped as a bible thumper without denying her faith. When someone says that they are Christian, most folks without detailed familiarity with Christianity (and even some Christians) assume that it is a monolithic religion and that we are all conservative evangelicals. Because, unfortunately, they are the noisiest and most politically organized strain of Christianity, certainly in the US, although I know that the history and nuances are different in the UK.

        Unless you live in the US Bible Belt or a similar religiously conservative area, moderate and progressive Christians essentially have to “come out”. My teenaged son has an entire patter that he goes through when other kids find out that he’s a practicing Christian. He has to explain that he is not a creationist, and that his church doesn’t hate women or gay people. In fact, our minister is female, and roughly 20% of our congregation is queer. Many members of our congregation openly support abortion, which our (mainstream) denomination considers a personal matter and does not dictate a policy. Our denomination also has a membership in an organization called Christians Against Christian Nationalism — because we are horrified by the gross, performative misuse of our faith to undermine democracy, human rights, and freedom of religion.

        So, moderate and progressive Christians take heat from both sides — conservative Christians for being too “woke” and from non-Christians who automatically assume that we are not woke enough. So, I think that is some of the context for why Cary feels like she has to thread the needle on the topic of her faith.

    • Kitten says:

      Same here. Maybe just an awkward way of saying that she’s not ashamed of her beliefs. Like, she felt that saying she was a “proud Christian” was a little too much for her so she just settled on “happy” lol.

    • Fortuona says:

      Him parents are Evangelicals and they were leaders in the Vineyard Churches . I guess her parents were into that branch themselves which is how they met at a church camp

      • Normades says:

        That’s really interesting and I will google it on my side but if anyone has any insights I’d be curious.
        England is weird. I live in France and was shocked when one of my English friends told me her kids pray in public schools. She said yea, Church of England, the national religion.

      • abritdebbie says:

        When I grew up there was prayer in primary school at the beginning of assembly 1980s, but in my secondary school there wasn’t any. According to our last census 37% define themselves as no religion and 42% as Christian. So the second most popular religion in the UK is none 🙂

    • Ollie says:

      In The Times interview she was responding to a question that asked her about a rumor that she is “super-super religious.” FYI. She attended The Woldingham School, a Catholic school which is a member of the global Network of Sacred Heart Schools. It’s the same school Emma Corrin attended. Two things that have impressed me about Mulligan are that she’s not in-your-face about whatever religious views she has, and she seems to do a significant amount of charity work for War Child UK and The Alzheimer’s Society, walking the walk.

    • Team Sussex says:

      Do Americans not use the phrase “I’m happy to [do x or y]”? You hear it in the UK a lot. It simply means “I don’t mind/I don’t feel strongly about it one way or the other so I’ll do whatever you want.” I just read it as her saying she’s not hiding her faith or practice; if it comes up she’ll acknowledge it and if it doesn’t come up that’s fine too. In other words, nothing to see here.

      • Kitten says:

        We do use it but not quite in the contextual (colloquial?) way you describe here. FWIW, I don’t see anything wrong with what she said–it just seemed a bit strangely-worded but your explanation helps so thank you. I do really adore Mulligan as an actress–she’s a rare talent IMO.

  8. Matilda says:

    Bradley tells her she “cannot flip between these two people”, umm yes she can Bradley because she is a far superior actor than you will ever be who has the capability of flipping in between breaks and isn’t an a-hole to the crew, an aspect of acting that she enjoys and he took away from her whilst filming. Directors shouldn’t enforce method acting on their casts. I’m glad Hollywood sees beyond him.

    • Dara says:

      Totally agree. I watched Maestro for her performance, not his, and she blew the doors off. He was working so hard trying to mimic Bernstein all I could see was his acting, while Carey seemed to just effortlessly BE the person she was playing.

  9. Ohwell says:

    Her red art style for this awards has been excellent though she looks way to thin.

    Copper is a pill.

  10. J.Mo says:

    People are so judgemental these days. In my small Canadian city, those who look down on Christians and paint them all with the same brush, are the same people who would defend my Indigenous right to include spiritual activities in daily life. It’s just hypocritical. I can appreciate she has a spiritual life that isn’t dogmatic and extreme.

  11. Polly says:

    It’s very fine and all to say she’s a Christian and I’m glad y’all other “normals” are happy to see non-lunatics represent you.

    However, without normal Christians voting for fringe candidates, they wouldn’t be elected. And I’d be curious to know how she votes or donates given she’s profiting of the work and labor of lgbtq+ folks, Black people and other historically oppressed people.

  12. yellowy says:

    I’ve always found her persona not to be bad or anything, but princessy and precious.