British ingénue Carey Mulligan has the throaty, sexy voice of a woman twice her age with poise and sophistication to match. Yet, as she peppers her musings on fame and fright with unconscious speech fillers — “kind of,” “like,” “sort of” — one is reminded that she is, indeed, an ’80s baby.
“I’d seen Wall Street when I was, like, 12 years old. It was made (around) the year I was born, so obviously I didn’t catch it when it first came out,” the actress, 24, quips while discussing her highly anticipated Oliver Stone collaboration, Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps.
“The premieres are scary. Golden Globes was nerve-racking, but slightly less so. … The red carpet for (awards shows) aren’t as exposing as the red carpet for the premieres because there’s so many people and there’s someone more famous coming up behind you,” she says. “You don’t feel on show for very long before they go, ‘Oh my God — there’s Clooney!’ and then suddenly, you’re gone. … It’s only when you have to stand in front of the cameras for, like, five minutes that it starts getting galling. It’s mainly the cameras that freak me out.”
Mulligan plans to take her parents as her dates for the Oscars on March 7, which is not surprising, considering her mother has accompanied the star, who says she spent the Sundance screening of Education with “my head shoved up (my agent’s) armpit,” to several awards shows already. Mulligan picked up the best-actress award from the National Board of Review and has racked up nominations from BAFTA, the Golden Globes and Critics’ Choice Awards.
Mulligan hopes to return to theater — which she calls “all-consuming” and “addictive” — at some point next year. Between now and then, though, she’ll have to get used to being one of Hollywood’s “it” girls, which means more nerve-racking moments on the red carpet.
“It’s not a natural thing to stand on the red carpet in a pair of shoes that you would never ordinarily wear, and a dress that you would never ordinarily wear, and have a hundred people take your picture. It’s this horrible feeling that it’s self-promotion. You feel so awful that you’re trying to be some big deal.”
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