Emma Stone gets even n

The ac­tress has her eye on the prize

Woman’s Day (NZ) - - This week -

LaLaLand star Emma Stone grins from ear to ear as she re­calls the night she re­ceived her Best Ac­tress Academy Award from her child­hood crush, Leonardo DiCaprio. It may be seven months ago, but she re­calls that in­cred­i­ble mo­ment as though it were yes­ter­day.

“I was a huge Ti­tanic fan grow­ing up and I had a framed picture signed by Leonardo DiCaprio in my room,” ad­mits Emma, talk­ing with Woman’sDay to pro­mote her new film Bat­tle­oftheSexes.

“To walk up on stage to Leo and have him hand me an Os­car was one of the cra­zi­est mo­ments of my life! I felt like a lit­tle kid in my bed­room who sud­denly y g got

the chance to hang out with the guy in the poster on my wall and that was in­sane!”

Emma’s break­through role came in 2012’s TheA­maz­ing

Spi­der-Man, which also saw her dat­ing her English co-star An­drew Garfield. The se­cre­tive cou­ple were to­gether for three years, but nei­ther ever com­mented on the ro­mance.

Now, de­spite ru­mours of a re­union with An­drew, we hear Emma’s ac­tu­ally see­ing

Satur­dayNightLive writer Zack Born­stein. “They’re a sweet, slightly goofy cou­ple,” re­ports a friend. “They’ve prob­a­bly only been on seven or eight dates, so it’s early days, but there’s a real spark and Emma feels com­fort­able.”

Ei­ther way, the ac­tress plays down the pres­sure she feels try­ing to keep her love life un­der the radar. “There are days that are a strug­gle with my loss of anonymity and I think that’s prob­a­bly the hard­est el­e­ment of this job,” Emma shrugs. “But I love this job more than any­thing,an so there’s only so much com­plain­ing you can do about some­thing like that.”

Her new film Bat­tleof

is the story of the fa­mous s 1973 ten­nis match be­tween women’s world cham­pion Bil­lie Jean King, played by Emma, and ex-men’s champ and se­rial hus­tler Bobby Riggs, played by Steve Carell.

Emma looks sheep­ish when asked how fa­mil­iar she was with Bil­lie Jean and the match, which is one of the most-watched tele­vised sports events of all time.

Court­strou­ble

“I didn’t know much about it be­cause I wasn’t even alive dur­ing the match!” she says. “But that means most of my gen­er­a­tion is also un­aware, and it’s an op­por­tu­nity for them to learn about these peo­ple and this match that was a hugely his­tor­i­cal sport­ing event.

“I was honoured to play this woman who did so much to fight for equal­ity. She helped cre­ate a path of equal­ity and equal prize money for women.”

This opens the door for a ques­tion rarely asked in celebrity in­ter­views: Was she paid the same salary as Steve on this film?

“I don’t al­ways dig into what ev­ery­body’s con­tracts are and it’s tricky be­cause it can be af­fected by bud­gets or other cir­cum­stances,” Emma says cau­tiously. “But yes, as far as it goes for Steve and I on this film, we were paid equally. The con­ver­sa­tion is an in­cred­i­bly im­por­tant one to have. Pay equal­ity mat­ters, so it was nice on this film to have it.”

The Ari­zona na­tive moved to Hollywood as a teenager to pur­sue her act­ing dreams. But un­like her char­ac­ter Bil­lie Jean, Emma con­fesses she never had a com­pet­i­tive drive when it came to sports.

“I wasn’t an ath­lete grow­ing up and one of the funny things about learn­ing ten­nis for the film was that my coach had to tell me at one time I should count the points be­cause I’d for­get about the score and didn’t care if I was win­ning or los­ing,” she re­calls with a gig­gle.

“Grow­ing up, I re­ally liked to spell, so I’d be very an­gry if I lost a spell­ing bee. I guess it means some­where in­side me there is some kind of com­pet­i­tive spirit!”

The ac­tress, who also ap­peared in TheHelp, Easy

A and Mid­night­inParis, says she con­sid­ers her­self a win­ner when it comes to the sup­port she gets from her par­ents and close friends, old and new.

“Jen­nifer Lawrence has be­come a great friend be­cause she’s some­one I can talk to about things that other peo­ple might not un­der­stand,” says Emma. “But I’m pretty good at know­ing who are the peo­ple who would be friends with me no mat­ter what kind of job I had.

“My real name is Emily, but that name was taken when I reg­is­tered with the Screen Ac­tors Guild, so I be­came Emma. If some­one calls me Emily, then they’re one of my real friends.”

The 2007 com­edy in­tro­duces au­di­ences to two new comedic tal­ents – Emma and Jonah Hill. She’s the lead­ing lady in this 2010 com­edy about a stu­dent who lies about los­ing her vir­gin­ity to win pop­u­lar­ity. Emma needs no help win­ning hearts in 2011 as a bud­ding writer who gives a voice to wronged maids in the South. This Marvel-ous su­per­hero pair­ing leads to love for Emma and co-star An­drew in 2012. Her teen crush Leo presents her with an Os­car in 2017 for LaLaLand. LA THE AMAZ­ING G SPI­DER-MAN SU­PER­BAD EASY A THE HELP

LA LAND Satur­dayNight Live writer Zack has some cute help in woo­ing Emma! NEW BEAU WWithouth mak­ingk a rack­etk about it, Emma says she and co-star Steve re­ceived equal pay on the movie.

AlthoughA Emma ad­mits she didn’t know who ten­nis ace Bil­lie Jean (above left) was, she now sees her as a cham­pion for women’s causes.

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