Anna: ‘I spend all my money on takeaways’
She’s scared of dating, spends all of her money on takeaway and is as star-struck by Blake Lively as you are. Here’s why ANNA KENDRICK is your best friend - you just don’t know it yet
‘Do you know him, Kevin Hart, the comedian?’ she asks me unassumingly.
Uh, yeah, I know Kevin Hart the comedian. As does most of the planet.
‘Well, we were jumping around all day,’ Anna explains, clearly aware of how whack this sounds to anyone outside the bizarre stratosphere that is Hollywood.
‘It was so weird and so fun and so fricking hard. I’m definitely going to be sore tomorrow. But it didn’t really feel like working out because we were just jumping on trampolines, so I feel a bit silly being in hardcore leggings and a sports bra.’
Anna, the 33yearold star of pretty much every movie that’s made bank at the box office in the last five years, lives in Los Angeles, where she conducts a surprisingly ‘off the grid’ existence. Somewhat unintentionally.
‘I get no cell reception in my house so I have a landline like I’m 60 years old,’ she laughs.
The daughter of an accountant and a history teacher from Maine, Anna now lives a life full of these kinds of dreamlike scenarios because she’s, well, a huge star. Except for the fact she doesn’t seem like one. Instead, the former child actor offers up insights into her celebrity peers like she’s on your team and not playing for the superfamous side.
Take Blake Lively, her costar in her latest film A Simple Favor. Anna is here to tell you that, yes, she is as insanely beautiful as she appears and, yes, your obsession with her is warranted.
‘I worked with her husband Ryan a few years ago and we got to know each other. We’d see each other at events where I’d say hi to Ryan and then basically my jaw would be on the floor because Blake looks so amazing. You expect her to be a little bit icy because she’s very chic, but she’s so open and warm. She’s also got that lowkey dark sense of humour, so I definitely see why she and Ryan get along.’
The real power couple here, though, is Anna and Blake. In a film that’s so risqué and perverse it makes Game of Thrones sex scenes look vanilla, they command the camera and play off each other like evil stepsisters on steroids.
Anna is the first person to tell you she’s incredibly nervous about people seeing it.
‘It’s really dark and really funny but it’s so twisted and I hope people think that it’s fun and not too creepy,’ she worries aloud of
A Simple Favor, directed by Bridesmaids’ bigwig Paul Feig and shot in Toronto in mid2017.
ANNA KENDRICK IS AT HOME WEARING WORKOUT GEAR, BUT DOESN’T THINK SHE DESERVES TO BE WEARING IT. ‘IT’S CHEEKY, BECAUSE I WASN’T REALLY WORKING OUT,’ SHE CONFESSES. SO, WHAT WAS SHE REALLY DOING? ‘I WAS PLAYING TRAMPOLINE DODGEBALL WITH KEVIN HART,’ SHE EXPLAINS, IN THE SHARP, DEADPAN MANNER THAT’S MADE HER FAMOUS.
At the time, paparazzi photos of Anna and an immaculately dressed Blake hanging out on set sent the internet into a fangirl frenzy.
Anna may nail her role as Stephanie, a young, chirpy single mum with a surprisingly dark past, but the actress says her own formative years weren’t quite as hectic as her character’s.
‘There was a period in my life – from 19 to 21 or 22 – where I didn’t date or go out much,’ she says.
For those playing at home, this was roughly around the time she scored a role in Twilight. Before then, Anna was bestknown as a Broadway star who nabbed her first Tony nomination at age 12. But her showstealing side role as Bella Swan’s chatty BFF Jessica rocketed her to the forefront of our collective consciousness and, really, she hasn’t left it since.
‘I think [back then] I felt awkward around the idea of dating – the idea of going to dinner and seeing if you have some kind of love connection still seems very silly and formal to me,’ Anna says. ‘And because I was still making friends at that time, I wasn’t meeting people in a more natural way. That was a really important period for me personally. You can lose people at any second, they could get hit by a truck and they’re gone, but you have to be able to be with yourself because you’re stuck with you.’
The solo time paid off – she’s been linked to cinematographer Ben Richardson for four years, although her management won’t confirm the relationship. But Ben is a regular visitor on Anna’s film sets and they’ve even worked together on many of her smaller indie films.
‘THERE WAS A PERIOD IN MY LIFE – FROM 19 TO 22 – WHERE I DIDN’T DATE OR GO OUT MUCH’
The comedian is well versed in the world of dating and even wrote a book about it, Scrappy Little Nobody, in 2016. In 2017, she was applauded for admitting she broke up with a guy because he didn’t respect her boundaries. Read: He kept tickling her, she asked him to stop, he didn’t, she dumped him.
If she were single, Anna admits she’s probably too famous to go on dating apps – ‘Obviously, I can’t put myself on Tinder’ – although she does enjoy the occasional scroll through her friends’ accounts. She’s also on the fence when it comes to the notion of ‘love at first sight’.
‘F*ck man, I dunno. Obviously anybody who’s over the age of eight doesn’t believe in love at first sight, but a girlfriend of mine and her current boyfriend both got cast in a project and were meeting up to run lines and walked into the restaurant and were just both like, Yes, this is the person I’m going to be with. I believe in them. It’s made me a believer.’
Anna’s one true love, however, is takeaway food. Somehow, she claims, she manages to absorb a truckload worth of delivery meals into her tiny 157centimetre frame.
‘I blow so much money on food delivery,’ she divulges. ‘I am such a lazy motherf*cker that I will pay a premium to get food delivered to my house. There are so many weird things where I pinch every penny, but with food delivery I’m like, Oh this will cost twice the actual order, great, as long I don’t have to leave the house. It’s really shameful.’
I believe her because, unlike most of her peers, Anna doesn’t baulk at divulging personal details. She will happily tell you what you want to know and she will swear like a sailor while doing it.
For example, I ask her to share the most impressive person in her phone contacts and she delivers: ‘I have Mariska Hargitay’s info. She’s Detective Olivia Benson on Law and Order: SVU, which is the greatest TV drama of all time, so that’s very cool to me. [I can call her up midepisode] and say, “You’ve done it again, Olivia.”’
She then tempers this statement with some realness. ‘But seriously, I don’t know her very well and yet I somehow have her phone number. But I’d never text her,’ she laughs.
She says Bryce Dallas Howard is the nicest person in Hollywood (‘Hands down. I’m telling you, it is unbelievable how kind she is’) and reckons her friends are an even split between ‘normal’ people who run meditation studios and work as liquor reps, and celebrities. Having said that, she admits, her last social outing was a reunion with her Pitch Perfect costars. The photo she posted from said event received more than 500k likes on Instagram. Not so normal after all.
Something Anna is more hesitant to speak about, however, is the Hollywood gender pay gap, which other actresses, like Jennifer Lawrence and Emma Stone, have campaigned against.
Asked whether she’s ever experienced the downsides of the imbalance, Anna is uncharacteristically coy.
‘That’s one of those conversations where I can’t get into specifics without blowing up my own spot, so I’m just trying to do what I can on the inside,’ she says. So, is that a subtle yes? ‘I mean, kind of...’ she trails off. The brunette star has been fortunate to star in several ladyled films and has multiple strong female characters on her resume, but says she does have a problem with being typecast based on whatever her most recent film was.
‘Right after Pitch Perfect , I got offered all these sullen, moody characters,’ she explains. ‘After
Up in the Air (which scored her a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination) I got uptight, smarty pants characters. I’m sure after
A Simple Favor comes out I’ll get scripts for upbeat, chirpy mums.’
She’d like the next notch in her proverbial belt to be a villain. ‘I’ve played characters who are flawed or unkind, but I really want to play a true evil bitch.’
But aside from A Simple Favor, Anna hasn’t been working much lately, by choice.
‘It’s a big commitment going off and making a movie for two months and I haven’t read anything I’ve been excited about,’ she explains.
The actress, who also possesses Grammyworthy pipes, says she feels guilty about taking so much time out of the game, but says even in her downtime she doesn’t get to chill out and gorge herself on the takeaway she so desperately loves.
‘If you do have a day off, somebody in your orbit will have something for you to do and you’re like, That wasn’t really a day off though, she laughs. ‘But I guess I can’t really describe playing dodgeball with Kevin Hart as work. It’s more workadjacent.’
Something tells me she makes every job feel a little like that.
‘I’VE PLAYED CHARACTERS WHO ARE UNKIND, BUT I REALLY WANT TO PLAY A TRUE EVIL BITCH’