There’s something about Carey. Really, there is. She’s that rare and alluring package of beauty, brains and talent that isn’t at all aware that she is in possession of the ultimate superstardom tri-fecta. And Flick Chick isn’t just saying it because the young Oscar nominee commented on how much she loved the dress I was wearing (thanks Carey!)
“It’s gorgeous and you look great! Where did you get it?” the luminous Ms Mulligan enquired almost shyly in that cool crisp English accent as she sat down for an interview with TODAY at the Hotel Du Cap. She was in Cannes to promote Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps, which world premiered at the 63rd Cannes Film Festival earlier this May.
It is this very un-pretentious, completely disarming nature of Carey Mulligan that warms you instantly towards her like an old school friend, and make you completely forget that she’s actually currently one of Tinseltown’s hottest, most sought-after commodities- a bonafide Hollywood rising “ IT” girl.
And she’s one of those rare few that actually deserve the kudos. After all, the 25 year old ingénue more than held her own as Winnie Gekko in Oliver Stone’s sequel to his critical and commercial 1987 hit Wall Street amongst a veteran cast comprising of Michael Douglas, Josh Brolin and Frank Langella. As the grown-up estranged daughter of 80s villain-hero slick corrupt banker Gordon Gekko (Douglas) who is engaged to new hotshot banker Jake ( played by real-life beau Shia LaBeouf) , she was the rose among the thorns in the male heavy cast and a classy breath of fresh air. She didn’t get a Best Actress Oscar nom for owning every scene in 2009’s An Education for nothin’… OK!
Flick Chick: So what was it like being (almost the only) girl in the big boys club?
Carey Mulligan: It was great. I was daunted by the whole thing, because of Oliver and his reputation (laughs). And just being in such a strong cast. It’s always the biggest budgeted American film I’ve ever been in… so it was nerve-wrecking. Also because my character was completely invented and I had such fears that she was going to be the token girlfriend… that sort of thing. But Oliver managed to tell both stories very well and to link them well.
Flick Chick: Are you a fan of the original?
Carey Mulligan: I … am… NOW! (laughs) I mean , I saw the original for the first time when I was 12, and it came out when I was 2… so it wasn’t a teenage film sort of film. I wasn’t really interested in films when I was growing up.
Flick Chick: Gasp…You didn’t?
Carey Mulligan:I mean, I liked going to the cinema to watch Jurassic Park, Titanic,and things like that… I wasn’t into these kind of films. But then I watched it before I met Oliver. And then Oliver wanted me to watch it again and again. He asked me to watch all of his films… hahahha! But he wanted me to watch it to sort of try and incorporated some of Michael’s characteristics and mannerisms. And some of the things he’s tried to do in the original film. And I tried to but really, she’s so far removed, the way my character is written. And she really never grew up with this man.. he’s been in prison. So that didn’t quite pan out in the end (laughs)
Flick Chick: So it must have been a whirlwind since the incredible success of An Education…
Carey Mulligan: Yes! It all happened so fast. I kind of thought it was going to be an Arthouse thing and play to a few cinemas in England. I never thought it was going to get a release in America. And then it happened. And the last 6 months running up to the Oscars…it all happened very fast. It just went by like that. But it was all good stuff! I was astonished and incredibly grateful. But it was bizarre, to be doing so much of something that isn’t your job, you know…
Flick Chick:So it was a sort of An Education in way?Did you learn anything since then about being thrown into the limelight?
Carey Mulligan: Yeah, I had never done any press at all until the film premiered in Sundance ( Film Festival) I had done one interview in England for a TV thing I did. So suddenly, to be doing lots and lots of interviews…wow. I think I learnt to stop swearing to journalists because it really upsets my Mum!
Carey Mulligan: (laughs) But no, I don’t think I’ve changed hugely personally, really. Just work has changed. And even then, it’s not to the degree you would imagine. Of course, it’s much easier to get the opportunity to meet people and express an interest (in films that you might want to do) but it’s not the case of getting an array of offers. I still have to audition for the jobs that I want. And I still don’t know what I am doing next.
Flick Chick: I cannot believe that! Do you think Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is going to be the game-changer for you in Hollywood?
Carey Mulligan: I don’t know! I was terrified coming here because I thought people were going to be like, “ Oh she was nice in An Education, but she should stick to teenage girls.” It’s really scary if you had something that was really successful to then follow it up and hope that people don’t rip you to pieces. So I was really nervous actually… I was nervous when my agent saw it, you know. Because I was so excited to work with Oliver but I was initially nervous before I said yes to the job just because at that point An Education wasn’t a big deal yet.
Flick Chick: You seem to be drawn to serious roles. Are you a serious person?
No not really! (laughs) I am just not very good at comedy (laughs). So I do dramatic stuff.And I find all that kind of work cathartic. I get a kind of a buzz out of doing drama.
Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps is in cinemas now.
Your Flick Chick