Keira Knightley is set to be the cover star for the September issue of Elle, and along with four gorgeous covers they have released an extract from her interview which you can read below.
Who better to embody the ELLE spirit than Keira Knightley. Beautiful, talented, well-read, open-minded, opinionated, feminist, fashion-forward, and like ELLE … delivered 30 years ago. In honor of ELLE’s 30th birthday, photographer Paola Kudacki shot four exclusive covers styled by Samira Nasr with 30-year-old actress that highlight ELLE’s dual French and American heritage (ELLE France was founded in 1945) and the vital role that beauty and accessories play in the magazine’s fashion identity.
Holly Millea sat down with Knightley to talk about the power of 30—or what we like to call ‘the new starting line’. To find out what she had to say check out the entire cover story exclusively in the September issue of ELLE—available digitally and in select cities now, and on newsstands nationwide August 18.
Here, a preview of four of the many things that made us fall in love with her…
HER 30TH BIRTHDAY WASN’T WHAT SHE EXPECTED…
“I was heavily pregnant, I couldn’t drink—what is the point of having a thirtieth birthday if I couldn’t get phenomenally drunk? But my husband took over, arranged a lovely lunch at one of my favorite restaurants, 20 of us, and they were all being so sweet, like, ‘Look, you can have a great time and be sober!’ And it’s fine apart from the fact that they started drinking at about one. Then they came back to our house—they’d covered it in balloons that said my name and happy birthday and all that—and they got completely obliterated. They were there until two or three in the morning, absolutely drunk, and I was there eight months pregnant, completely sober. So it was lovely, but it wasn’t what I’d imagined a thirtieth birthday was going to be.”
…AND HER 20S WERE “PRETTY CRAP”
“My twenties were pretty crap,” Knightley says. Okay, so she concedes, “My career was absolutely amazing; in fact, I don’t think my career will ever get better than it was in my late teens, early twenties,” she says. “But as a person, you’re changing so much and you’re trying to figure stuff out. Some people go wild and have a great time and throw caution to the wind, and I was the complete opposite. I was very shy. It took me a lot of years to try and stop pleasing a lot of people and allow myself to have fun. It’s the difficult thing of getting out of your own head. To stop going, ‘Oh, there’s something I should be doing, there’s a way I should be behaving, I should be dressing….’ All of those shoulds, you can drown in them.”
BUT THERAPY HELPED
“Oh, fuck, yeah!” Knightley laughs when Millea asks if she’s tried therapy. “I’ve totally done therapy. I highly recommend it. I don’t do it at the moment. But in my early twenties when I found everything completely overwhelming, 100 percent, I did it! Are you kidding? I think when you’re in those moments in your life, and you want to get through them…you have to do whatever it is to help you get over it. You have to give it a go. Try anything that might help.”
AND HAVING A BABY MADE HER STOP HATING PARTS OF HER BODY
“The love thing is astonishing. It’s a very primal, primal love. That’s quite extraordinary. And the ability to have no sleep and continue going. It’s not pleasant—I never thought that I could actually do it for the amount of time that I’ve done it. Also, I have to say, as a woman, you hate certain parts of your body. You go through those periods where you look in the mirror and you think, Oh, if only I had different legs or arms or whatever. You go through pregnancy and labor and then feeding the kid and you go, Wow, my body is totally amazing, and I’m never going to not like it again, because it did this, and this is fucking extraordinary.” Oh, and the baby’s name? It’s Edie.