Welcome to Keira Knightley Fan,
an up-to-date and in-depth fan resource for the talented actress. Serving fans since 2004, we are now the longest running fansite dedicated to Keira. Nominated for two Academy Awards, Keira is recogised worldwide for her memorable big screen roles that include 'Pride & Prejudice', 'Atonement', 'The Imitation Game' and Disney's 'Pirates of the Caribbean' franchise. Our aim is to bring you all the latest news, articles, and photos relating to Keira's career, and strive to remain 100% gossip-and-paparazzi-free. Thank you for visiting!.
Quoting Keira
"All through my life what I've loved doing is watching movies. I love the escapism of film, I love stories. So it is incredible to be able to be in them as much as I am, to see them from the first stitch in a costume to the end product."
Keira Knightley Talks to Us About Anna Karenina, Kissing Her Hot Co-Stars, and More
Home » Press Archives » Articles from 2012

Period-piece films based on great literature is my fuel for life, so I’ve been waiting all year to see Anna Karenina, in theaters today. Starring Keira Knightley, Jude Law, and Aaron Johnson, the film was directed by THE Joe Wright. The same man who directed two of my all-time favorites, Pride & Prejudice and Atonement, both also starring Keira. So when I was invited to attend a NYC press day for Anna Karenina to meet Joe and Keira and (OMG!) interview her one-on-one, I felt like a fan girl going to comic-con or a Star Wars convention. Best. Day. Ever.

Do you want to start by telling me how you prepared for the role?

I read the book. I read it as many times as possible and dived into it. And then also, I read a book called Natasha’s Dance, which is a cultural history of Russia by Orlando Figes, which was something Joe got everybody to read because he based the idea of the theater on that book. But really, as far as the character, it was all from the book.

The costumes were incredible! Do they inspire what you wear, or do you just want to put on sweatpants at the end of the day?

I would love to say that it does [inspire me]. I have quite a lot of clothes, but I wear the same pair of jeans, the same jumper, the same jacket—I literally wear the same four things in my wardrobe. I cannot be bothered. It’s a shame. I really love the costumes. I’ve always loved costumes since I was a kid. Costume design always fascinated me because it’s creating a character. Whereas, I never know who I want to be. So the character I’d create for myself, I can’t figure out.

Working with Jude Law and Aaron Johnson—such different characters. Did you notice a different chemistry?

They’re very different people. One’s Aaron and one’s Jude. They’re both incredibly sweet and funny in different ways. Aaron is 22 and a dad of two. He’s a great dad. He’s very sweet with his kids and his wife. Jude is a father of four, and he’s great. They’re both great.

Who’s been your favorite leading man to kiss?

I can’t even remember them all. Oh gosh, that’s not a very nice thing to say, is it? They’ve all been very lovely.

You’ve worked with Joe Wright on three movies, and they’ve all been adaptations of books. Are there any books you can see him doing next?

I haven’t got a clue. We really like this because it was our version of a trilogy. I think we both like working from literal adaptations. Books have such great source material. We don’t have any plans for another one.

Does your working relationship change with each film?

What was lovely is that it has changed. It would be really dull if it stayed exactly the same. But what was strange was—because I see him a lot and we’ve worked together on commercials between the films that we’ve done—but actually reconnecting on the first day of rehearsing, I think we both realized that we’ve changed a lot. I can’t put my finger on exactly what, but we saw the world differently, and we worked slightly differently. We were interested in different things. It was a process where we were like Whoa. Where are you? Who are you? What are you interested in?’ and that was really exciting.

You were so young working on Pride & Prejudice. And now Anna Karenina…

She’s definitely the most challenging character that we’ve tried to tackle. I think that always changes the way we’re going to work. Because you’re never sure whether she’s the heroine or the anti-heroine. The way you’re meant to see her is a juggling act. You’re constantly trying to figure out when she’s in the wrong and when she’s in the right and how her dark her darkness can really go. Sowing those seeds within the whole thing was a balancing act, which was really great and exciting.

I thought it was great to see you with Mr. Darcy (Matthew Macfadyen) again, only this time he played your brother.

He’s great. I love him. We’ve gotten along so well during Pride & Prejudice. Our actual relationship…for some reason we see each other and just laugh the whole time. [During rehearsals] we had to do a lot of the dancing together. For some reason, we were always partnered up, and we would piss ourselves laughing. And we thought that should be a part of their relationship in the movie as well.

Their relationship is definitely the most fun.

Yeah, it is in the book. They find each other funny. She finds his exploits funny. It’s a nice part of her character in there because it gets so dark so quickly. You’re able to see that person.

Have there been any moments in your career when you’ve thought, ‘Wow. My job is so cool.’

There are lots of moments. The moment you walk into the set, and you see this massive sound stage created into this theater. It’s a moment of a child where you go, Wow, this is extraordinary. Being backstage in a theater, that’s a serious moment where that rush of what it is to be an actress. You really get it in theater in a way that, because of the technical side of film, you don’t get that rush in the same way. In Jack Ryan, my character was waiting in a car, and Chris Pine and Kevin Costner’s character were being taken off in a helicopter. I thought that was pretty surreal. As I’m sort of there. That was a Hollywood moment.

Do you prefer working in theater?

I like both. I love that there is such a rush. But getting to do film is wonderful as well. It’s all about mixing it up. There is a magic to a theater, to a stage, because they are the places where illusion is made. An audience knows when it gets into a theater, they’re going to get engaged than how they do when they go into a cinema. Generally, films are presented to you, and it’s all spelled out, whereas theater—you have to engage with it.

Back to the costumes, do you think it’s more important to get the fantasy aspect or to have historical accuracy?

Always the fantasy aspect. I think the historical accuracy, you use as a tool. And sometimes it’s really interesting, but sometimes it’s not historical reenactment. Probably the closest to complete historical accuracy that I’ve ever done would be Pride & Prejudice, but Anna Karenina was at its most extreme form because they are literally 1950s couture designs—a lot of the dresses weren’t actually taken from 1873. 1873 had this weird slope where they didn’t like shoulders at all, so they sloped all the way down. They used to do that with padding, so we did try that out to take a look. It looks ridiculous. A lot of it, you would go, That’s so distracting. There’s no point.’

FYI, Keira was so lovely, warm, and intelligent in person—one of those rare times when a celebrity actually exceeds your expectations. Loved the movie too. Will you go see it?