Sunday, February 24, 2013

Jessica Chastain Quotes

1. I always say I am a realist, and my mom says: "No, you just have anxiety."

2. Before, it was just about making the films - and now it's releasing them. Which is a steep learning curve.

3. Broadway has always been a dream of mine.

4. I can't even open my eyes underwater.

5. I don't want people to look at me.

6. I grew up poor.

7. I don't like the idea that fame could mean that people can no longer relate to me.

8. I don't want to be in my car all day. I love getting up in the morning in Venice and walking my dogs down to the cafe to get my tea, and then perhaps going to a bookstore and sitting and reading, then walking to the beach.

9. I have problems because I'm very expressive, and usually red lipstick gets on my teeth and face.

10. I have a feeling that very soon I'm going to fail very, very big. I'm going to try something and everybody's going to be like: "What was she thinking?"

11. I love being around great actors and film-makers, and I try to hide the fact that I'm in awe of them.

12. I think that with any emotion - fear, love, nervousness - if the actor's feeling it, then the audience feels it.

13. I love fall because I love the whole cuddling aspect of it, and a sweater dress has that vibe of I'm going to hunker down and be warm, but it's also very feminine.

14. I try not to fake anything.

15. I'm such a geek.

16. I was excited that my films would finally see the light of day and people would see them. But I never imagined that such nice things would be said about a lot of my films.

17. I'm inspired by people who are so sensitive and vulnerable that they try to cover it up.

18. I'm the first person in my family to go to college.

19. I'm the unknown everyone's already sick of.

20. I'm used to working really hard to get a role. I was always auditioning and talking my way into roles.

21. I've had to learn how to say "no" to offers.

22. I'm very sensitive in real life. I cannot not cry if someone around me is crying. I will start to cry if someone is crying, even if it's not appropriate. I have that thing in me, a weakness or sensitivity.

23. I've actually been given a great gift. When I walk into an audition with a director, I'm carrying no baggage. They haven't seen me in anything, even though I've done nine films.

24. I've spent my life being embarrassed.

25. I've never been in New York for the whole time of Fashion Week.

26. It takes me a long time to make a big purchase.

27. Okay, I'm going to let you in on a little secret: I'm a very superstitious person. I'm walking onto the plane as we speak. I'm putting my hands on the outside of the plane and my feet are on the lip of the plane. I have to do it every time before I fly.

28. There is this immediate connection, this intimacy when you're acting because there's no room to be polite or shy. Also, as an actor I get to connect with women I've never met before.

29. People were confused by me, and at first I was auditioning a lot for the crazy characters or the victim, someone who'd been attacked. Which is great, because usually those are the best acting roles.

30. Whatever anyone says, I think the opposite will happen.

31. You know, it's recently come into focus for me why I want to be an actor: It's because of the connection I feel to people.

32. When something happens, I always check myself and know it's going to go away. So be prepared for it. This is a tough business for actors who are sensitive. If you try to hold on to things, you'll go crazy.

33. I was a difficult child because I wanted to be the mom.

34. I don't look modern. I'm not the girl that would walk into the room and everyone goes: "Oh!"

35. (on being directed by Terrence Malick in "The Tree of Life") I would have pages of what we were going to convey, but I could say the words in any order I wanted, and sometimes we would say the same thing in many different ways…I think he will always be the greatest teacher I know. I'm trying, in the Terrence Malick kind of way of not planning and just allowing life to happen, trying to find these moments that mirror life and (are) not preconceived in any way. So that has changed me. I try to keep that freshness in things we've done.

36. (on rehearsals) They'll say: "Save it, save it". I tell them: "Don't worry. I have a bottomless well of tears."

37. Sometimes I'll have a meeting with someone and they'll say: "Oh, Sean Penn was just here and was saying the nicest things about you". You know, when you're applying for a job? These are like my recommendations. It's nice.

38. I get embarrassed really easily. I get embarrassed even when people sing me "Happy Birthday."

39. (on preparing for her role in "The Tree of Life") Emotionally and spiritually, I had to figure out what it meant to play the embodiment of grace. And how do I capture that? Okay, so I start studying paintings of the Madonna at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, I start listening to music that inspires feelings of love inside me, I start reading books about cultivating joy and cultivating gratitude. I start meditating.

40. I don't normally get into this, but I'm a vegan. And I try not to, well, I don't want to torture anything. I guess it's about trying to live a life where I'm not contributing to the cruelty in the world…While I am on this planet, I want everyone I meet to know that I am grateful they are here.

41. When I first moved to LA, it was very difficult. All the casting directors didn't know what to do with me, with the way I looked. I'm not blonde with tanned skin and tall and skinny. I looked very different - and they said I looked like I was from another time.

42. Right after "The Tree of Life" came out, I started hearing about strategies for my career. And I made a decision that I wasn't going to do anything based on a strategy. If I don't continue to challenge myself and risk failure, I have no business being an actor. I'm not an actor to be a personality. I want to see every part I take like a master class. And you know what? I'm going to fail sometimes. And that's OK. Because when you fail, you learn more.

43. I don't talk about my dating life. But I will say this: in this business it's very tough to maintain a relationship because we're like gypsies - always on the move. And the more you share your relationship with the world the less special it becomes. So I always try to keep my dating life quiet.

44. It took me four hours to read the script for "The Tree of Life" because it's so dense and beautiful, and I feel it should be published, and I hope it is someday because it's really gorgeous. I knew from the script that it was going to be a really special film, and it was going to be unlike anything probably I'll ever make. It's like a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that changes the structure of filmmaking. I didn't know how he was gonna do it, but I knew, because it was Terrence Malick, he was gonna do it and he did.

45. (Addressing her fans about her first Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress for "The Help") Oh my goodness! I am in absolute shock. I didn't expect to receive an Oscar nomination! I really didn't! I don't understand this great year. I'm in Paris and was in a fashion show when the nominations were announced. My life has become a dream. Thank you all, for your love and faith in me. I've more blessings than I can count. Today is a beautiful day that I will remember for the rest of my life.

46. My grandmother has been the biggest influence in my life when it comes to acting. My father is a fireman and mother is a vegan chef, and the only real artistic connection I had while growing up was my grandmother. She always kind of wanted to be an artist and an actress, but as a young woman in the '50s, she wasn't really given the opportunity. She was told to marry young and have children young, and be a mom. But when I was young, she'd do things like, for Christmas, she'd buy me a ballet tutu and ballet lessons. My grandmother took me to my first play. And she moved me to Juilliard. When I got in, she flew with me to move into the dorm. She's been an incredible influence in my life.

47. I love fashion. As a young girl I would always save my money to buy fashion magazines and imagine myself doing photo shoots or walking up the red carpet. All those things came true in my life although I like a more retro look than a lot of the latest designer things I get to wear. But fashion is something I love to explore and I whenever I get to go to the big fashion shows in Paris I feel so much anxiety because I'm so fascinated by the art and creativity that goes into creating beautiful clothes.

48. I'm not the girl at the club on the table. I'm going to be the one in the corner, quiet and so I don't call attention to myself.

49. I was the girl who cut school to go to the park, and the other kids would be smoking and drinking and I'd be reading Shakespeare.

50. I walk the dogs, I play the ukulele, I cook. I'm not a girl who goes to big parties - I'm shy.

51. I was always a little awkward, a redhead, and very freckly. Kids like to make fun of people who are different. I had short red hair and wore workout boots, so I got teased really badly for having red hair and being different.

52. (on being named the ambassadress of the Yves Saint Laurent fragrance, Manifesto) Yves Saint Laurent is a brand that inspires me deeply. Since its creation, the brand has conveyed strong values that I cherish, such as an unwavering commitment, absolute love and feminine audacity. This new fragrance is an emblem of it all. I am (excited) to be part of this beautiful adventure.

53. (on doing her first animated movie, "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted") The first day I thought: "No cameras, that's fine, I'll wear sweats, no make-up", and I showed up and I was doing the voice, and I looked up and saw all the cameras and I realized: "Oh my gosh, they're videotaping this." And then of course the next day I turned up, I was in, like, full hair and make-up.

54. I think a film should be judged on the film and not on the sex of the person who directed the film.

55. I'm very private. We've never seen a picture of me with a beau. For me, it's about the work. I have no personal life!

56. (on what she used her paycheck on from "Madagascar 3: Europe's Most Wanted") There was a couch I wanted to buy and I had no time in my schedule to do another film. I was doing so much press last year, thinking: "How am I going to pay my rent?" Also, I had to buy a new couch. My agent said: "I don't know if you're interested, but they're having auditions for an animated film." I've always wanted to do an animated film. So I went in and auditioned and then I got the call that I got the part. And I got the couch!

57. (about her chances of winning an Oscar for "The Help") I was convinced that I wouldn't, but I didn't care. Just look at what last year was, everything that happened. If I'd also won an Oscar, it would have made me crazy! It would have got way too much, way too soon. Of course, you know, I would love to be back at some point in my future but it wasn't something like: "I need this." It was more like: "This is very intense here and I'm just going to kind of hang back and celebrate."

58. I always try to play characters who are very different from what I am. If the character was a good swimmer or a diver, I'd be interested because in my real life, I am totally scared of water. I would immediately feel compelled to do it because I'm always trying to tackle any fear I have. I don't want my life to be controlled by fear, whether it's the fear of being rejected, fear of being loved; I want to run my life with open arms. Also, I never want to play the same character twice. To me, that's soul crushing.

59. I always want to keep doing different things, I don't want to just concentrate on film. The most important thing for me is being an actor. Film, theatre, television- that's the career I want. Actresses have so many ups and downs, and we're not always given wonderful choices. So I always want to find great characters. If that character's on television or stage, I'm going to go there.

60. I've done 11 films, mostly films with very strong men - Al Pacino, Tom Hardy, Brad Pitt, Ralph Fiennes - but "The Help" is the film where I was getting questions "Oh, how was that set?" And I would think: "Well it was probably the friendliest set I've ever been on, but are you asking because it was all women and assume we would be fighting?" That made me realize there needs to be a lot more films with women casts, if there is that misconception out there…

61. (on losing out on an Oscar to costar Octavia Spencer) Octavia Spencer was a great teacher for me. I went to Juilliard and studied Shakespeare and Chekov and Ibsen and all the heavies, so to be able to do comedy was such a dream. That woman's timing is so great. As soon as I met her I knew we had great chemistry together - she was a fantastic teacher.

62. Sorry to say that "Iron Man 3" isn't going to work out. My schedule is jam packed and I can't fit anything else in. The press announced my possible attachment far too soon. I know many of you wanted me to be involved, and I'm so sorry to disappoint you. Hopefully there'll be another Marvel film in my future. Shane Black and everyone on the Iron Man team are really wonderful. I'm very excited to see the film when it comes out.

63. (on the Time Magazine piece that was written about her for The 100 Most Influential People in the World issue by Gary Oldman) I had no idea that Gary Oldman even knew my name 3 months ago. I've been a huge fan of his work for years. Many of you know the story of how I burst into tears when he came up to me on the red carpet at Palm Springs. His performances have meant so much to me. They've been so inspiring. Reading what he wrote in the Time Magazine piece leaves me speechless. I can never find the words to truly express how grateful I am to be a working actress. The beautiful, kind comments that Gary wrote drive me to want to be better. He is far too generous, but I will work very hard to try and live up to what he wrote. I am forever moved and in awe of that man.

64. I end up doing roles where I'm afraid I'm going to embarrass myself, or fail. But then it gives you that extra hit of adrenalin, and you have to step up your game.

65. Isabelle Huppert is for me the greatest actress in the world. She always plays very bold characters, very daring women. She always challenges herself, working with directors from other countries, she's never lazy.

66. When I was a young girl I felt on the outside. I remember cutting all my hair very short at twelve years old, I was wearing red cowboy boots, had my own style. Then a lot of children at school tired to make me feel nervous and teased me a lot because I was different. Jerry Hall was such a great figure for me to see, at that time, because she was redhead and very powerful. I hope that this uniqueness is something I have in common with Yves Saint Laurent women. And I hope these ads will show to young girls how to be different.

67. I have a rule not to date actors and because of that I can hopefully make work be the focus of public interest instead of my private life.

68. I got teased quite a lot when I was younger but I've grown into my red hair now and see it as something that makes me unique and special.

69. (on working with Hollywood "tough guys") My favorite thing is, I work actually with a lot of men that you would think at first impression would be kind of scary. Sam Worthington, Michael Shannon, Al Pacino, Sean Penn. What I love so much about these men is that they are very strong, and they have this almost aggressive vibe, but it's because they have this intense vulnerability, that they have to be very strong to protect themselves. So it's actually, once you get to know them, you realize they're all kittens. At the end of the day, they're like kittens.

70. (on the pressure of doing "Zero Dark Thirty") It was a very stressful shoot, but how could it not be when you're dealing with that kind of material and you're in that part of the world. We were shooting part of it in Chandigarh, India, which is on the border of Pakistan. It's such great responsibility in the story we were telling. It was a lot of pressure. I think the script is one of the best scripts that I have ever read, and my part is awesome.

71. I love being around great actors and film-makers, and I try to hide the fact that I'm in awe of them. I try to pretend with Al Pacino or Helen Mirren that, you know, we're just part of the same team, we're all in this together, but really, secretly, the whole time my heart is beating very fast.

72. (on her stylist Elizabeth Stewart) I've worked with her for two years. My very first meeting with her, I really had a connection because she sees fashion as more than just using a dress to look pretty. I never wear something to bring myself attention. For me, when I'm wearing a dress, it's about the dress and about the story that the designer was creating. I also love the idea that she dresses people for who they are as individuals. She doesn't dress people like herself, or like each other. She also dresses Cate Blanchett, Freida Pinto, and Amanda Seyfried, and we all have very different styles. In my everyday style, it's more simple. I don't necessarily want to draw a lot of attention to myself. Lots of black blazers and scarves.

73. (on her character of Maggie in "Lawless") I love the relationship between Maggie and Forrest. Maggie is a woman who is very used to being around men - she was a burlesque dancer - and she's probably been hurt by a lot of men, physically and emotionally. When she shows up at this little town, she's an oddity for the brothers and especially Forrest. He's used to violence but not being around women. So she becomes almost the aggressor in the relationship, in the way she pursues him. I did see her as very strong. Nick Cave (who wrote the screenplay) suggested that I watch "Once Upon a Time in the West" to understand her better. There's a great line that Claudia Cardinale's character says after she sleeps with the man who killed her husband: "It's nothing that a hot bath won't wash away." And there's something of that attitude in Maggie. She doesn't drown in her sorrows. She's always moving forward. When she meets Forrest it's the first time she's not able to pick up her bag and walk away. I read a lot about 1930s Chicago and watched films like "Angels with Dirty Faces". I was lucky because I'd just worked on "Texas Killing Fields", which Michael Mann produced. I knew he had just made "Public Enemies" so I sent him an email asking if he could recommend any books about the period. Within an hour I got a call saying: "We'd like to schedule an appointment for you to sit down with Michael Mann tomorrow," and when I showed up, he had binders of stuff from Public Enemies for me. That was helpful.

74. I love researching. When I get a role that's one of the very first things I do. I just want to fill myself up with knowledge of what the character might have come from. Not just even reading about the history of the time, which of course I do, but I also love learning about the music of the time, listening to that; thinking of the food of the time; what someone would have done for fun.

75. I have always known I wanted to be an actress, but my New York experience made me realize that my desire had nothing to do with becoming famous or making money, I was interested in exploring the human soul, its complexity, I wanted to work to understand something about life and myself. Being an actress means being in another person's shoes and therefore understanding what the person whose role you play feels; but also connecting with other human beings, as a mark of profound professional intimacy, that often touches the soul.

76. (on if it was awkward being nominated alongside co-star Octavia Spencer for Best Supporting Actress at the Academy Awards) It would have been awkward if I was set on winning but I wasn't. A year ago it was "Jessica Chastain who?" and now it's "Oscar-nominated Jessica Chastain". I can't help but smile saying that.

77. I don't read reviews because if you believe a good review, then you have to believe a bad review.

78. (on her scenes being cut from "To the Wonder") Just as I suspected, my small role has not made it into the final version. But I really didn't imagine it would. The three days I shot were with Ben Affleck and he was doing really great stuff. I'm looking forward to see how it all brilliantly comes together.

79. (on doing the scary scenes for "Mama") I've done an experiment, and it's working for me. I heard Johnny Depp has an earwig (headphones), and sometimes he listens to music during a scene. So I asked the director if I could wear one for all of my scary scenes and have them play this really terrifying music in my ear. That's how it's gonna be in the scene anyway, right?

80. (on why she doesn't reveal her age) I never say. Clearly, I'm not 15. But I like mystery.

81. There's nothing about me that makes you think: "movie star". I'm just this normal girl.

82. My grandmother took me to see David Cassidy in Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, and I thought: "I want to be up there." We sat down and the play started and there was a girl of my age who opened this huge book and started narrating and I thought: "This is a job. She gets to wear cool costumes and this is what I am going to do." Ever since then, I have always known I was going to be an actor.

83. Terrence Malick is probably one of the greatest teachers I'll ever know. A great teacher for filmmaking, for acting, but also and mostly, a great teacher of what it is to be a great human being. I value him so much.

84. Whenever I approach a role, I'm the girl who will sit in my house for a month and just watch as much as I can on the time period.

85. If you get $100 or $1,000, you are still going to spend it. You'll just end up spending the $1,000 on a nicer house or whatever and then you'll have to keep the money at that level to sustain your lifestyle. But if you keep it at the $100 lifestyle, then you're fine. You can choose the job for the creativity and the challenges of the characters rather than the money.

86. I'm not going out to night clubs and dancing with other actors, I'm not having lunch at The Ivy.

87. I never get recognized. I think because, in my most successful film ("The Help"), I look very different. But, you know, if someone does happen to recognize me, they're usually sweet, and it's never a negative experience. My favorite thing is if I'm going out to buy something embarrassing, I always think: "Oh God, I hope no one sees me buy this!" However, for the most part, it's been fine.

88. It wasn't like I wanted to be an actor. It was more like I am that. This is my job. It was so clear cut, I never had to make a choice.

89. It's tough, acting. You have to walk two lines of a tightrope. There's the all-consuming fear of failure: I'm about to fall flat on my face. There's that and there's also confidence - you have to be confident in order to try things - and they fight each other all the time.

90. (on her Broadway role as Catherine Sloper in The Heiress) I always look for a great arc. Men get great arcs all the time, especially in movies, but it's very rare for a woman to get an arc. Catherine absolutely has that. She finds her voice, which is a wonderful thing to play.

91. Before coming to New York, I had never had the possibility to come close to creativity of that kind. No one in my family had ever had anything to do with that environment, therefore at my audition at the Juilliard I risked a lot, especially on an emotional level. When they accepted me I found myself in another world.

92. I always felt before I had to prove myself. I would show up on a set and people would have heard about me but they wouldn't have seen my work. It was like they were watching me out of the corner of their eye saying: "Who is this girl?"

93. I like art, and fashion to me is art, so I will continue wearing things that I think are beautiful pieces and probably will get people talking.

94. I was having so much trouble with energy and a friend of mine said: "You know, just go vegan for two weeks," and I did and I felt so good, health wise, that I thought: "Okay. I'm going to stick to this." That's how it started, but then you start to read. Once I started doing that I thought: "I don't know that I'll ever not be vegan." I just did it and that was the end.

95. The most important thing in my life, and the thing I try to focus on, is to try not to live a life of cruelty. That means trying to make sure I look people in the eye when I meet them. Sometimes you jump in a taxi, or maybe you only have two minutes with someone, and you never see them again. I try to always look them in the eye and have a real experience of what it is to communicate with someone.

96. I've always made really strange choices, maybe because no one told me otherwise.

97. (about her shaky reception when she first went on auditions in LA) Many people didn't know what Juilliard was or didn't care about my theatrical training. I'd hear things like: "We like Jessica, but she's not pretty enough for that part." You realize: "What does that mean?" I went from being the most unlucky actress to the luckiest actress. Some of the films took forever to come out. My very first film: "Wilde Salome", still hasn't come out yet! "The Tree of Life" had a long editing process. "The Debt" sat on the shelf for a year when Miramax was sold. I went to every film festival - with two films in each festival. I ended up having every movie in the movie theater.

98. They talk about a curse with awards. Sometimes people win then bad things happen. I just want to act. And I don't want anything bad to happen to me.

99. Women inspire me who juggle many things, who continue to be creative and also have a personal life. I definitely want a family, because how do you play normal people if you don't have a normal life?

100. I love to disappear into roles and play different characters. And I think I'm getting great films now because I'm not conventionally beautiful.

101. (on her fighting scenes for "The Debt") I trained for months. I had no idea how to throw a punch; I'd never been in a fight in my life. But considering I'm a pacifist, I enjoyed it. Krav Maga is how to kill your opponent in the least time possible. It's ruthless and made me feel bad ass. I'd say to my friend: "Come at me!" I'd take her down and pin her and she'd say: "OK, enough. I'm excited for you to finish this movie!"

102. I love my family, but they don't understand what it is to be an actor, so an important relationship is with my best friend, a fantastic actress: Jess Weixler. We were roommates at Julliard and now we live 10 blocks from each other. I make an effort because whenever I am having a hard time, I always get a text from her. She is a life saver. Jess and I have been friends for over 10 years. I would never do anything that would get in the way of her getting a part. No-one is going to pit us against each other.

103. The first time I met Brad Pitt, he was a normal guy on his motorcycle, but he immediately spotted a man hiding with a camera. I felt this sense of fear. I was so unaware people were watching. I see myself as having a different career path. I could be in denial but I don't think I'll ever have to deal with the media craziness that Brad and Angelina do, because Brad is such a handsome movie star and Angelina Jolie is one of the most beautiful women in the world; it's the perfect storm for attention. I don't see that's where I'm headed.

104. I'm not a secret anymore. I'm now going to be forced down your throats. It gives me anxiety to be honest, because so many nice things are being said; I'm going to drive myself crazy if I try to keep up with that. I want to tell people: "I will disappoint you at some point." Everyone is in a bad film. Everyone will give a bad performance. I want to allow myself the freedom to take risks.

105. As a little girl, playing games, I would absolutely believe I was a princess. If we were pretending there was a monster in the closet, I would be terrified. When I realized there was a job where you could play all day and get paid for it, I said: "That's my job". I am OK doing off-Broadway for $400 a week, because it's about doing what I love.

106. I was shooting "Zero Dark Thirty" for a long time, most of us are playing real people and my part is awesome. I want to work with people who know what they're talking about and Kathryn Bigelow is an amazing human being. I was shocked by what I discovered while making the film. I love doing all that homework and research. Then I can show up on set and be free. For "Jolene", I flew to South Carolina, rented a pickup truck and hung out at Super Walmart so I could hear voices and get to know people who live there. I love to go to a place and find a voice that I like. For "The Debt", I spent months researching Josef Mengele, a doctor who performed experiments on inmates at the Nazi concentration camp Auschwitz. For "Lawless", I wore undergarments from the 1930s, with metal zippers, to get a feel for the period. For "The Help", I hung cotton balls dipped in rubbing alcohol, in my costume during the party scene when my character appears to be drunk. Every character I play I feel is like a woman I got to meet and learn from getting to hang out with. I see them as their own people. So I think I take something away from everything.

107. (on "Zero Dark Thirty") I knew the second I read the script and I was learning things, I knew that it was going to be a hot-button issue. Even when we were shooting, there was great care to be as respectful to the story as possible. For me, that was the most important thing: that we tell the right story for history's sake. I'm not allowed to discuss it, which is so bad because I hate keeping secrets. Whenever someone tells me: "I have a secret," I'm like: "Don't tell me," because I'm the worst at keeping secrets. I'm so excited for people to see the film, because it really reminds me of a film from the 70's. There is so much intelligence in the script, and there's a light shone on something that people will be surprised about.

108. I'm always going to do both theater and film, always. I love theater and I love the ensemble feeling of it. I love the community. I love being in New York. I love the idea of finishing a show and then seeing people from other shows and then all leaving for a late night dinner.

109. (on making her Broadway debut in The Heiress, a play associated with such formidable women) I don't feel trepidation because what it shows is what an exquisite role Catherine is. There's no way my Catherine will be the same as Olivia de Havilland or Cherry Jones or Jane Alexander. We're such different women with different sensibilities. I don't feel the nervousness of it, because I could never be the wonder that is them and I just have to find who Catherine is to me. I find her so modern. It's shocking to me that this adaptation was written in the 1940s. For her at the end of the play to stand alone and believe it's OK not to be married - for 1940 to have a woman be independent in that way and make decisions without the influence of a man - I find that shocking. Thirty years from now, this story and this play will still be relevant.

110. (on her Broadway role as Catherine Sloper in The Heiress) It's very relevant, a woman believing she is what the men in her life tells her she is. And it goes from her father to her suitor to finally at the end of the play, she's on her own. Whenever anyone finds out I'm doing The Heiress, they all go, "I love Catherine." And I love (my character) too. When we first meet her, she appears very confident, she tells a funny story, she seems fine. And then when the father comes into the room we see anxiety and social awkwardness set in. And I find it really interesting (that all of that pressure), you see it come out in the way she interacts with people.

111. It's not always easy to experiment with fashion on the red carpet, because I'm representing myself. I really want to go out there with a Mohawk, but I realize it's a little too much for most people to digest. I had bright orange hair as a child, but it's got darker over the years. I use a shampoo to enhance the color and Moroccan Oil to boost shine. I'd change my hair for a role if I needed to, but I prefer using wigs.

112. As an actor, you approach the characters from what the script tells you. You don't think about: "Well, what do I look like compared to what she looks like?"

113. I'm not going to be the girl with the private yoga instructor at my house.

114. Every character I play I feel is like a woman I got to meet and learn from getting to hang out with. I see them as their own people. So I think I take something away from everything.

115. (when asked what she wants women and men to admire in her) I would like women to admire my differences. don't look like a top model, I'm different: if they would admire this in me, probably they'd feel more comfortable with themselves as well, with their particular traits which make them unique and beautiful. As for men, I would like them to admire my passion. They love femininity, but if you find a partner who loves you for your strength it's the best.

116. I know people ask why I never am pictured with a man, but my work is being an artist, an actor. It does show, indeed, women don't need a man to define. I define myself.

117. When you're doing a play, it's basically saying: "Here I am." It's a very vulnerable thing. On film, it's vulnerable, but there's a time delay. With theater, what I love so much is the shared experience between the actor and the audience. You're almost breathing at the same time, like there's shared emotion-but also, with that shared emotion, you feel when they're not with you, and that can be a difficult experience.

118. (on adjusting to the costumes in The Heiress) I'm a jeans girl, but a blue-jeans way of moving is very different from wearing petticoats, so from day one, I was wearing the shoes, the skirt, the corset. I never really left the rehearsal room. It took so long to put everything on every day, it's like: "Well, I'll just bring my lunch and eat it here."

119. (on overcoming stage fright) Every night I whisper to myself: "You chose this, Jessica. You chose this. This is what you wanted to do your whole life."

120. (on meeting Meryl Streep) I was in the lobby with some friends of mine, and I look over, and I said: "Is that Meryl Streep? And as I said it, she turned around and started walking toward me. That was the moment everything got kind of foggy. She went: "Jessica" and she grabbed my hands and she was saying beautiful things about the play and my performance. Because I was so shocked by it, all I did was I held her hands and went: "Thank you, thank you. It means so much to me that you came." And I walked away.

121. I can model for photos, but at events I'm just not a pose-y girl.

122. (on her character in "Zero Dark Thirty") You really see the drive and the journey that this woman takes, and you see her unravel.

123. I'm very shy when it comes to guys. I like to be wooed, but I've had to be more outwardly available, I guess.

124. I always find sex scenes embarrassing. But at times they are necessary - I get that. It's a huge compliment when someone says you're attractive, especially when I was such an awkward kid - I was very tomboyish, with very short red hair, running around with cowboy boots on. So when someone tells me I'm a sex symbol I'm like: "what?". But I'll take what I can get. That'll teach all those boys back in junior high. In fact, I hope my very first boyfriend, the guy I dated for one month and who broke up with me at the Valentine's Day Dance - I hope that boy reads this article.

125. When I leave a film, there's this sadness that I'm not gonna know this person anymore.

126. I'm scared that I'll be on a talk show and David Letterman is going to whip out a ukulele and make me play, so I'm going to put it out there: I'm not that good. I nearly got into trouble at Claridge's the other night; I was jet-lagged so at 4 a.m. I pulled out my ukulele and started strumming. Suddenly, there was a loud banging on my door. I was too scared to open it, so I called reception to assure them that I had stopped.

127. "Zero Dark Thirty" will make news. We all think we know how it ended. We don't. And this movie is about how it really ended. It is shocking. When I first read the script, I was blown away by this woman. The sacrifices she made and what she had to do. It's something I still get very emotional about. What happens when you live for this one goal? And then you achieve it.

128. Brits are usually so mean to your redheads. Why is that? In America it's seen as a good thing. Look at Julia Roberts - she's cool, right? I was working in Thailand and I'd be walking down the street and people - British people - would stop the car and scream: "ginger!" at me.

129. (on working with Brad Pitt in "The Tree of Life") He didn't have a huge entourage, nothing like that. He just showed up on his motorcycle on the very first day and went: "Hi, I'm Brad." You just heard the rumbling of his bike and he'd appear like James Dean, or Marlon Brando from "The Wild One". He was kind, he was generous, he'd never heard of me but he never made me feel less.

130. I really made an effort to not put myself in situations where my private life becomes more interesting than my work.

131. I was ten years old. When I was this age I was such an ugly duckling: bright orange hair, my freckles. I never really got attention from boys and when you're a redhead all you get is old ladies coming up to you and cooing, not much else. I felt invisible. I remember being at Disneyland and we were waiting to see the parade, with the fireworks, Minnie and Mickey and all that stuff. I remember one dancer, she spotted me in the crowd and walked over. She told me how beautiful I was at a time when I felt hidden she gave me a spark. Disneyland to a kid back then was like the greatest place on earth, with thousands of people there, but I got picked. That girl pointed at me and said: "There's something about you."

132. I have a rule. No actors. I have dated an actor before, at Juilliard, but since then, I've only been on a couple of dates with one and I was so freaked out someone was going to take a picture of us, because they were famous. I realized I wanted just to be able to hang out with someone and I didn't want to talk about the business, first of all. I love movies. But I love talking about them like when I was 15 years old. I'm a film fan, but I don't want to talk about auditions or what movie I'm gonna do. I find that so boring. You have to welcome that. Off the record, I could name specifics for you. There are some actors, who are very, very famous, who know what they're doing. They court it. Like Elizabeth Taylor. Richard Burton. It's something that you woo.

133. (on actresses needing meatier roles) For a long time I was hearing that studios didn't want to make films with female leads because they didn't think they would make any money. Maybe this is showing a new trend, audiences are interested in everyone's story, not just the story of the few. It's very rare to play a character defined by her work and not her male counterpart. I think it represents this generation of women who are independent and capable and strong and not the product of something else, the girlfriend or the victim of the villain of the piece. It's really exciting to play a woman who's smart and intelligent and who uses her brain.

134. It's easier to do an action scene than a love scene. I love fighting. When the camera's not rolling, I'll usually punch some of the actors, just for fun.

135. (on playing a punk rocker in "Mama") I took bass lessons for about a month and I learned this song. Then, a week before we shot it I heard that the song was changed. Then I learned that. We shoot it and the camera goes from one band member to the next and then finally to me and the whole song has been played and Andrés Muschiettigoes "Cut!" I'm like: "Andy you showed me three seconds playing the bass and I spent five weeks learning how to play." I really got into the music as Annabel and I was listening to a lot of punk music. Now I really want to do a musical.

136. I will never say my age because I'm an actress, and I want to play different ages.

137. I'm not going to lie, being given free clothes is fantastic. I never used to imagine my wedding dress as a little girl, but I'd always imagined my Oscar dress.

138. (on her hectic work schedule) It's exhausting but I love the films. I love being on Broadway. I don't have time to go to these Oscar dinners and stuff but perhaps that's for the best. Because I'm on stage, I'm away from the craziness of that kind of campaigning. It's really exciting. It's exciting because last year people were saying: "This is your moment". So last year I kept saying: "I'm going to enjoy this because it's never going to happen again. I am never going to have a year like this again, it's incredible," and here I am this year, thinking: "I am never gonna have another year like this"

139. I always had this fear of being homeless. Being evicted. Which I don't know why I decided to become an actor. Maybe it's because I grew up without money, so I knew I could live without money. But I always had this thing of, I'm not going to be able to pay my rent.

140. I have heard things that sometimes people think that I'm boring. And I imagine that probably comes from I don't have a Twitter account where I post pictures of me in a bikini. I don't show a side of my life that, to me, is like for my friends and my family.

141. I didn't grow up with a lot of money, and we were evicted a couple times when I was a child. One time, I even came home from school and there was someone locking our doors. And he felt super guilty, and he asked me: "Do you want to go in and grab some things?" So that's happened to me a lot growing up.

142. In the press, I like to be known for my work and not for whom I'm dating or what my favorite ice cream is.

143. (on awards season) A strange thing happens this time of year. It starts to feel like it's a race. Acting is very different than playing tennis. You don't put two people in a room and we match it out. For me, I feel like I've already won. I never want to lose sight of what I feel right now being in this business and being nominated.

144. I don't accept that as an actress I have to play one personality over and over. Tom Hardy, Gary Oldman - all these great actors are allowed to change what they look like. Women in Hollywood? I've noticed they're not.

145. If someone tells me "You can't do that", I'm going to try to do it even more. It doesn't mean I'll succeed. But it means I'll fight you.

146. Being on the sidelines for a long time gave me the opportunity to strengthen myself to the idea of what fame is. I've had time to understand the kind of actor I want to be. Personal life. Age. "Who are you dating?" All of those things get in the way of playing characters.

What do you think of Jessica Chastain's quotes?

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