Kirsten Dunst: Women on top at iVillage Entertainment

Exclusive from CosmoGIRL!

Kirsten Dunst opens up about her true love (Jake Gyllenhaal) and how taking control of her career made her a woman in the December/January issue of CosmoGIRL! on newsstands now!

Read on for an exclusive outtake from CosmoGIRL! and for more fun, check out

CosmoGIRL!: You're practically gushing with confidence these days. What makes you so strong?

Kirsten Dunst: I just feel more comfortable with myself and in my skin--I'm feeling like a sexy woman. You have to enjoy your body when you're young instead of always feeling, "Oh, my arms feel this way, or my legs feel that way." This industry puts so much on how you look that it can really get to you.

CG!: Do you have a hard time getting other people to see you as a woman when they're used to thinking of you as a girl?

KD: I actually don't like how people perceive me. Certain people have their own thing, but I just don't want to be the blonde actress Kirsten Dunst, who's cute and blah, blah, blah. I think what annoys me is that people perceive me as naive sometimes.

CG!: Why do you think that is?

KD: Because I'm very likable but I'm not jaded. Most people in this industry are. One of my favorite things about myself is also one of the things I hate most ? I'm easily influenced. I just look at people with an innocence instead of thinking that they're gonna screw me over. I'm always trusting at first, and sometimes that's really kicked me in the a**. But other times it's been a beautiful thing to be innocent and open. That's probably what makes me a good actor.

CG!: You're great in your new movie Mona Lisa Smile. It takes place at a women's college in the '50s. Tell us about the character you play.

KD: I play Betty Warren, who is just a very tightly wound girl. She's just terribly unhappy and just beats herself up with envy and jealousy. She hates any change and is very much about the traditions of the wealthy and finding a husband. She thinks these things are gonna make her happy--which of course, in the end they don't.

CG!: Could you relate to her at all?

KD: I could relate to everything about the movie. Even though it took place in the '50s, it's all about the restrictiveness of women. Whether it's girdles or getting fake breasts--it's the same kind of thing we're doing to ourselves now.

CG!: Did you like this character?

KD: I've never played anyone so deeply depressed, so I liked that. I loved my character, so then I got more and more into it, then I loved the movie.

CG!: Well, Ms. CosmoGIRL! of the Year, we love you!

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