Gorgeous redhead Julianne Moore is respected as an actress with enormous range. Once lauded for playing twin sisters on the soap As the World Turns, Moore later launched a film career that has resulted in two Oscar nominations in the same year (2003 -- best actress for Far from Heaven and best supporting actress for The Hours). In addition, her work as a tortured lover in The End of the Affair and as a porn queen in Boogie Nights earned her Golden Globe, Screen Actors Guild and Academy Award nominations.
First turning to the indie film world for juicy roles, Julianne scored an Independent Spirit Award for Todd Haynes's Safe and met her husband, director Bart Freundlich, while filming The Myth of Fingerprints. She has also done mainstream blockbuster films like The Lost World: Jurassic Park and Ridley Scott's Hannibal, and she recently wrapped The Forgotten, a thriller. Never having done a pure romantic comedy, the actress was flattered and excited when hot, handsome actor Pierce Brosnan requested her to play his love interest in Laws of Attraction, a Tracy/Hepburn-style love/hate film about two New York divorce attorneys who mix like oil and water.
Julianne Moore loves to talk, constantly. This is something fellow actors Brosnan and Frances Fisher had to get used to on set. True to form, Julianne was quite talkative, funny and honest during a recent interview at the famous Four Seasons hotel in Beverly Hills. Wearing a pink-beige long-sleeved blouse and huge gold hoop earrings, Moore looked luminous, her porcelain skin subtly dotted with underlying freckles -- the mark of the natural redhead. We told you she likes to talk, so we'd better get started!
Q: What was your first reaction to hearing that Pierce Brosnan requested you?
Moore: I was like, What, me? My agents said, "This is a romantic comedy and it's really funny." I said, "Why are they giving it to me?" I was frankly shocked and flattered and thrilled and really happy to do it because I thought that it was good and funny, and I've never done anything like it.
Q: What was the biggest surprise for you?
Moore: With drama you need emotional truth and you're fine, but with comedy, you need the truth and technique on top of it. So, it's very, very specific. It's really challenging, but it's also exhilarating. Scale is really difficult to judge in a film like this because it's not slapstick. It's not huge, and yet it has some physical moments so it's interesting to do.
Q: Did you go back and look at any great old romantic comedy performances?
Moore: No. I was just too afraid. So, rather than look at a lot of stuff, I just thought, Well, I'm going to try and just find it organically. I love to watch them, though. It's been sort of a dark season, and sometimes my worldview is not as grim as what's out there in the movie theater. I want to see something that's positive, and I want to enjoy my one Saturday night out with my husband.
Q: Would you do more romantic comedies now that you've had a taste of one?
Moore: I would. I really enjoyed it. All of us are going to probably fall in love with someone and attempt to have a relationship more so than, say, being caught in a ship that goes upside-down or trying to burrow to the center of the earth. It's interesting to play with that because it's the most exciting thing that happens to us.
Q: Your lawyer character eats sweets and junk food. Do you?
Moore: That's like me. Christmas happened and I ate everything, but I was able to go to the gym. In January, I had no time to go to the gym. I was working every day on The Forgotten, and I thought, I'm just going to have to not eat candy. And you know what happened? I lost weight, and that's without going to the gym. That's pathetic! That's how much candy I eat!
Q: Frances Fisher and Pierce Brosnan pointed out that you talk constantly. Is that your way to work through things?
Moore: [Laughs] It's very relaxing to me, but I talk on a drama, I talk on a comedy, I talk in a car... My kids are big talkers too. I talk all the way up and through "Action." If "Action" happens while in the middle of the sentence, I'll finish the sentence and then I'll go, which is not great for my fellow actors. Sometimes they're trying to concentrate.
Q: What do you talk about?
Moore: Stuff. What I did that day, furniture that I'm buying for my house, how my kids are, who I talked to on the phone last night or what I had for breakfast or how much weight I lost and that kind of stuff.
Q: Has anyone just told you to...
Moore: Stop it? [Laughs] Shut up? Pierce did. Pierce was like, "Be quiet, please be quiet." I said, "Yeah, Ralph Fiennes could take it, why can't you?"
Q: How did that go over?
Moore: He laughed. I just have a different way, and he's probably more like this [holds very still] when he's working. When I presented at the Oscars, you're standing back there and everyone is quiet and you can't say anything. We're waiting and waiting, and Pierce goes, "Oh, my God, this is the quietest I've ever seen you." It was really true.
Q: Before you got married, were you as cautious in relationships as your Laws character is?
Moore: I had a lot of relationships that were sort of like, Whatever -- I'll date him, and then they don't go anywhere. This relationship with Bart just proceeded. It started off as a very kind of casual thing, and it just kept going, and it was clear that we both had an interest in maintaining it. There was never this moment where you're like, Ooh, I have to get rid of this guy.
Q: So then being together for a while just naturally led to marriage?
Moore: Yeah. I had been married before. I got married too young and I had a terrible divorce, and I wasn't anxious for that to happen again. But I think that it offers a kind of container for you, like a box for you and your family. It's a way of saying, Okay, we are sure about this. We want to be in this. It's kind of a proclamation to the world about who you are and who you want to be.
Q: Do you try to make sure that you and your husband aren't working at the same time?
Moore: It's hard. He has a movie that he wants to do. I can't be in the movie and be gone too because of the kids. You need someone to anchor the family, and so you trade off, and you just try and figure it out. But we're all working. Everyone is juggling their families and their professional lives and their kids.
Q: What's the most romantic place on earth for you?
Moore: Paris, I'd say. It's pretty great there. My daughter was conceived in Paris. We went there on purpose. There you go -- that's a good answer.