Here’s yet another enjoyable feature with Emily for BuzzFeed UK–and the interview itself is also available in video form at the source. As you’ll see from the gifs, there’s many memorable moments with Emily here. I’ve also added some lovely photos of her taken for the website to the gallery. Enjoy.
BUZZFEED – Emily Blunt has been a constant on our cinema screens for over a decade now. She’s tried her hand at everything from comedy (with her iconic role in The Devil Wears Prada) to action (with Denis Villeneuve’s Sicario) to period drama (she played Queen Victoria in The Young Victoria) and even musicals (with 2014’s Into the Woods). With her latest role, she’s once again taking on something completely different: classic horror.
A Quiet Place, directed by and costarring Emily’s husband, John Krasinski, is not for the faint of heart. It’s a horror movie in the purest sense – so terrifying that you’ll be holding your breath and watching from behind your hands for the full 90 minutes – but at its core it’s also a heartbreakingly emotional story about parents just trying to do what’s best for their kids.
When we got the chance to chat with Emily in London recently, we jumped at the opportunity to talk about A Quiet Place, as well as a few other very important things…
Tea or coffee?
Emily Blunt: I have to say coffee now.
Because you’re American now?
EB: No, because I have children now and I need it! It used to be tea, but I’m going to go with coffee. I’m unable to get through the day without it.
How do you take it?
EB: Just with some milk. Regular milk.
Puppies or kittens?
EB: I’m allergic to cats, so it’s puppies.
What a way to start the year! Emily is at last, after a relatively quiet 2017, back on the newsstands. She’s the cover star of the February issue of Vanity Fair, and is featured in a gorgeous new photoshoot. You can find the full interview below as well as photos from the shoot in the gallery. I’ll do my best to provide further coverage as soon as its available.
VANITY FAIR – Emily Blunt has sparred with Meryl Streep (twice), out-action-starred Tom Cruise, and ruled the British Empire on-screen. But on this blustery Brooklyn afternoon in November, the 34-year-old English-born actress—surprisingly delicate in person, given the strength she projects on film—is perched on a window seat in a Cobble Hill café, laughing about her first professional heartbreak.
Blunt was 18 and playing Judi Dench’s granddaughter in the 2001 West End production of The Royal Family. If this scenario sounds ludicrously heaven-sent, know that Blunt is the first to admit it. She never intended to act professionally (the hobby was an antidote to a childhood stutter), but there she was. Blunt, who was still living with her parents in London, had no formal training. And Dench—fresh off her Shakespeare in Love Oscar win—had kindly taken her under her wing.
“I was a kid and could have meant nothing to her, but every day after work she invited me to her dressing room,” says Blunt, giddily recalling backstage visits from Johnny Depp and Pierce Brosnan. “It was crazy to me. I was drinking champagne and pretending I knew what anyone was talking about.”
NEW YORK DAILY NEWS – They threw the book at her.
By the time Emily Blunt agreed to a role in “The Girl on the Train,” the thriller by Paula Hawkins had already reached a full head of steam. It’s already sold 15 million copies worldwide in its first 19 months.
“I noticed everybody reading this book before I did,” Blunt told the Daily News. “I feel like I saw this title everywhere and it was on every subway, every plane I went on. We would go on holidays and you’d see people’s faces just buried into a copy of ‘The Girl on the Train.’”
And that meant all of those eyeballs would be glaring at any film adaptation of a novel that has drawn heady comparisons to both “Rear Window” and “Gone Girl.” That scrutiny would fall particularly hard on Blunt if she couldn’t properly play a perpetually drunk heroine, without stumbling into unintentional slapstick.
“That was my concern,” Blunt said. “I think there are pitfalls with it; that you can appear comical, lurching around like a drunk uncle. I think she needed to be frightening. It’s a very real disease and its claws are in her.”
TIME – Emily Blunt has come a long way from her star-making turn as a Louboutin-loving fashionista in 2006’s The Devil Wears Prada. To play the lead role in The Girl on the Train, out Oct. 7, she had to deglamorize like never before. “Talk about no makeup,” she says over salmon teriyaki and iced green tea at a Brooklyn sushi joint on a late-summer evening. “We added makeup to make me look even more like I had no makeup.” Each day she was decorated with prosthetic under-eye bags, varicose veins and rosacea, along with a changing array of contact lenses meant to evoke various stages of inebriation: pinkish for buzzed, bloodshot for hammered, tinged with yellow for brutally hung over.
Yet for all the attention on the minutiae of her appearance, the key to playing such a truly damaged character—a divorced, infertile alcoholic obsessed with the perfect-looking lives of a couple she whizzes past on her daily commute—lay far beneath the bleary-eyed surface. To bring Rachel Watson to life, Blunt, 33, had to learn how to identify with the humiliation and isolation familiar to many addicts. She disappeared so thoroughly into the character that even her husband, actor and director John Krasinski, says he didn’t recognize her onscreen. “For the first time ever,” he says, “I forgot it was my wife.”
High praise as that may be, Blunt will need to impress legions of tougher critics: the millions of readers who buoyed the movie’s inspiration, Paula Hawkins’ 2015 novel of the same name, to the No. 1 spot on the New York Times best-seller list for 13 weeks straight. While the book is the kind of impossible-to-put-down Hitchcockian psychodrama that begs for a film adaptation, its success creates a daunting bar for the movie to clear. “That’s what I found so appealing,” says Blunt. “It’s less about the thriller of whodunit. It’s the idea of your blackout drunk protagonist making sure she didn’t do it.”
The novel weaves together the perspectives of three interconnected women. There’s Rachel, who rides the commuter train from suburban Westchester into New York City. (The movie transplants the story from the book’s London setting to the U.S., though Blunt keeps her accent in tribute to Hawkins’ story.) Then there’s Megan (Haley Bennett), whose house Rachel’s train passes each day and who, Rachel imagines, has a perfect marriage. And finally there’s Anna (Rebecca Ferguson), the real estate agent whom Rachel’s husband (Justin Theroux) left her for. When Megan goes missing, Rachel believes she can help solve the mystery— though she can’t be sure that she didn’t, during a blackout, have something to do with Megan’s disappearance.
C MAGAZINE – “You should see what I’m wearing right now,” confesses Emily Blunt. Just five days ago, the expectant actress stole the show as a presenter at the Oscars, flaunting her new silhouette in a custom blush-colored Prada gown. But today she’s in New York, sitting in bed in flannel pajamas, talking on the phone. “There’s not a piece of Prada on me,” she says with a laugh.
These days, Blunt is not only juggling a high-profile career, but her growing family, too. Married to actor John Krasinski since 2010, Blunt, 33, gave birth to their first child, daughter Hazel, in 2014. Now, with the arrival of their second baby on the horizon, Blunt is ready to take a well-earned break from the spotlight in the final months of her pregnancy. “The first pregnancy is the most self-indulgent thing in the world because you get massages and prenatal yoga and hypnotherapy CDs. During this one I forget that I’m even pregnant. I’m hoisting my 2-year-old around!”
Six weeks ago, Blunt wrapped production on The Girl on the Train, fall’s psychological thriller based on Paula Hawkins’ bestselling book of the same name. Blunt takes on protagonist Rachel Watson, an alcoholic recovering from a divorce who witnesses something from a train window and becomes ensnared in a mystery. The role was a demanding one that became even more challenging when the actress discovered she was expecting. “It was actually more physical than I realized, which worried me a little, but I wasn’t telling anyone until a little later on,” says Blunt. “I told a couple of people like [co-star] Justin Theroux pretty early because he and I were doing some of the physical stuff together. He’s my friend, and I think he knew anyway—you know how friends just have a feeling.”
It’s the latest in a string of action-heavy flicks for the actress, who also starred as a FBI agent in Sicario (2015) and as a soldier battling aliens alongside Tom Cruise in the sci-fi thriller Edge of Tomorrow (2014). Yet her career started off on an entirely different note. Raised in a suburb of London as the second of four children to a former actress-turned-teacher and a barrister, Blunt enrolled in acting classes at an early age to overcome a stutter. In high school she was discovered by an agent, making her professional stage debut soon after in 2001, opposite Judi Dench in The Royal Family.
Critically acclaimed on-screen roles followed; Blunt went on to appear in the British television drama Gideon’s Daughter in 2005, which garnered her a Golden Globe. The following year, she landed her breakout role as Emily Charlton, the catty, self-important co-assistant to fashion magazine editor Miranda Priestly played by Meryl Streep in The Devil Wears Prada. In the 10 years since her game-changing performance (which also earned her both Golden Globe and BAFTA nods), Blunt has continued to prove her acting chops in the likes of The Young Victoria (2009), Salmon Fishing in the Yemen (2011) and in 2014’s charming musical fairy tale Into the Woods.