Always the bridesmaid
For once Kirsten Dunst was not cast as the happy, sweet, pretty girl, writes Neala Johnson
KIRSTEN Dunst spent her summer going to weddings. ‘‘ I was a bridesmaid, a maid of honour, went to another wedding . . . this was definitely a heavy wedding year for me.’’
As her school friends walked one- by- one down the aisle, the 30- year- old claims to have felt no pressure to get her own marital act together.
‘‘ Not at all, no. All in good time,’’ Dunst says. ‘‘ I’m not worried. When you do worry, when you fixate on those things, that’s when it doesn’t happen. Like when you hear about couples who adopt a child and then they get pregnant, you know? That kind of psychology.
‘‘ When you’re not thinking about it, that’s when it comes your way.’’
So Dunst is happy to remain always a bridesmaid for now, even in her new movie Bachelorette.
Riding a post- Bridesmaids appetite for female- led comedies, Bachelorette is an indie production focused on three emotionally stunted women – Dunst, Lizzy Caplan and Isla Fisher – who go off the deep end when the fourth wheel of their old high- school gang Becky, the one they called ‘‘ Pig Face’’ ( Rebel Wilson) is the first to get married.
Dunst’s BlackBerry- gripping, weddingorganising Regan is the most distressed that she’s not the one walking down the aisle.
‘‘ I’m not crazy like Regan is. Or Type A,’’ Dunst says with a laugh.
In the Bachelorette the girls turn Becky’s subdued send- off into a wild night of strippers, drugs, sex and a ripped wedding dress. As they battle until morning to undo the damage, the laughs are laced with some heavy issues, from bulimia to abortion.
‘‘ We got to talk about a lot of things that on a male set you don’t get to talk about,’’ says Dunst of the female- dominated set, led by writer- director Leslye Headland.
‘‘ Isla and Lizzy and Rebel, I respect them as actresses and I love their personalities. So for me it was very easy. It was a very supportive set but also really fun, too.’’
Dunst says it was refreshing to not be playing the happy, sweet, pretty girl. ‘‘ Not that I only play those roles, I did Melancholia before so it’s not like I was playing some nice . . . you know,’’ she laughs.
‘‘ But you don’t very often get to play women who are like this. It usually takes a female writer to write this kind of material for a woman because men don’t want to see women in this light, or they don’t know how to write it.’’
Dunst has been given great roles by females before – Sofia Coppola’s The Virgin Suicides and Marie Antoinette are among her most loved ones – but says a career in films is difficult no matter what your gender.
‘‘ There are so many different paths you choose as an actress. You could have a career where it’s mostly focused on your vanity or a career where it’s mostly focused on your comedy skills or your dramatic skills,’’ she says. So what path is Dunst on? ‘‘ Well, I started acting so young . . . I’m not affected, I don’t think, as much as someone who is starting out now. I’m not a vain actress,’’ she says.
Shouldn’t Dunst have gone off the rails by now? ‘‘ I have a good family,’’ she laughs.
‘‘ I definitely think this industry can make people weird, but it’s up to you to not let it.’’