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Mary Says Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter is Mind-Blowing; New Interview Also Released

MTV caught up with Mary Elizabeth Winstead at Sundance and asked her about Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. She says,

“I’m kind of on the sidelines, but I’m very suspicious of my husband’s [actions] and what’s going on in his life,” she said. “I know that he’s hiding something from me. You sort of see me piecing things together.”

Check out the clip below:

Also, here’s an excerpt of a new interview Mary did with Connect2Utah about Smashed. Be sure to read the full interview by clicking on the link provided:

Your character, Kate Hannah, is a little different from the sort of roles that you’ve had in the past. For one thing, there aren’t any monsters or CGI in this movie. Was that something that attracted you to the project?

Winstead: Yes, definitely. I was really burnt out on studio films. I just didn’t see how I was going to continue to be a better actor doing the kind of stuff I was doing. I was so grateful to have the jobs and to be there and be a part of it, but I wasn’t feeling challenged anymore. I got to a place where I was kind of stalled.

Winstead explains that over the years she has wanted to do something smaller and independent of the major studios but has been told time and again that she wasn’t a “big enough name” to get an independent film financed. Undaunted she simply continued making studio films until she could become a “name” or whatever it was she had to do.

Winstead: I woke up one day and thought, “I might never be a name.” Was I going to allow that to force me to never do what I really want to do? It didn’t make any sense to me.

Having established yourself as a “genre film actress” are you worried about what your fan base might think of the change of direction?

Winstead: I think Smashed has a lot of appeal. I think it is entertaining and funny, but it’s also sad. It really feels like something that a lot of people can relate to. It’s not just some exclusive art film. I hope that they will get into it, but at the same time the reason I did the film was to try and make myself a better actor. So anything that comes from it beyond that is icing.

Filed in Gallery Updates Movies Smashed

New Smashed Stills and Maxim Hot 100 2012

Ah, such a good way to start off the day! Some new SMASHED stills have been released and you can now view them in the gallery.

Also, Maxim’s Hot 100 2012 is in full voting mode & Mary is among the many nominees. Feel free to vote as many times as you want & tell everyone to vote for Mary!



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Mary and Aaron Talk to Vanity Fair About Smashed; Vogue Calls Mary a Woman on the Verge

Vanity Fair caught up with Mary & Breaking Bad‘s Aaron Paul where the two talked about the film Smashed.

Also, Vogue called Mary one of the women on the verge after her performance in Smashed:

Mary Elizabeth Winstead shines as an alcoholic grade-school teacher who’s locked in a life of excessive drinking with her slacker husband, played by Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul. Realizing she’s totally out of control, she decides to stop drinking, but the problem is that stopping drinking doesn’t end all her other problems. In fact, it actually causes some, as her sobriety annoys her hard-drinking mom (Mary Kay Place) and starts eating away at her marriage to a man who doesn’t want to stop drinking. All of this is rather familiar, but director James Ponsoldt (who cowrote the movie with Susan Burke) has a nice, sensible touch. The movie is bracingly funny, and Winstead, who’s had smaller roles in movies like Quentin Tarantino’s Death Proof, takes this chance to play the lead and runs with it. She nails both her character’s run-amok irresponsibility and the ruefulness that comes with it. I won’t be surprised to see her win an acting prize here and look forward to seeing her again.

Filed in Movies Smashed

More Great Reviews for Smashed

So glad that with each Sundance screening, it’s been undeniable that Mary’s performance in Smashed is amazing and critics seem to agree. I’ve been posting numerous reviews from people who’ve seen the film, and they all seem to enjoy the film. Here’s the latest review, first one coming from Cinema Blend:

It wouldn’t be Sundance without a harrowing drama about addiction, and as far as those kinds of movies go, Smashed has the goods. The primary appeal is the lead performance from Mary Elizabeth Winstead, the beauty known for intriguing roles in Scott Pilgrim vs. The World and The Thing, who plays a woman spiraling into alcoholism who finally realizes she needs help. She and her husband (Breaking Bad’s Aaron Paul) have spent years drinking way too much and having plenty of fun together, but one particularly brutal hangover at work one morning puts the gears in motion for Winstead’s Kate to finally make a change.

Thankfully Smashed doesn’t wallow too long in the “rock bottom” part of the story, allowing us to watch Kate indulging in some truly bad behaviors– smoking crack and spending a night on the street being the worst– but focusing the story around her efforts to recover, particularly AA meetings and new friendships with other recovering alcoholics played by Nick Offerman and Octavia Spencer. The biggest heartbreak of the film comes from the way her staying sober begins to break apart her marriage; Paul and Winstead make it obvious why these two love each other, but also why a sober wife and a drunk husband can’t find common ground.

Smashed, which doesn’t yet have distribution but surely will soon, will be sold based on Winstead’s performance, and though it verges into some histrionics from time to time, Winstead commits full-throttle, and shines even in the smaller moments, especially when put together with Paul. Though the film’s story could have been a little cleaner and more authentic, the details are all correct, and it’s always good to see talented actors stretch a little, especially given Nick Offerman’s recent fame as the utterly different Ron Swanson on Parks & Recreation. With a little more humor than your average addiction drama, and a willingness to have hope for its characters, Smashed has real emotional weight without putting you through the wringer– not a small bonus at this point in a long, long film festival.

Joblo also reviews the film, but since it’s pretty lengthy, I’ll only post a bit of it but click on the link to read it in full:

Continue reading More Great Reviews for Smashed

Filed in A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan III Movies Smashed

Mary Talks Smashed and A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan in New Interviews

Lots of new interviews being released today. First up, here’s a quick one from day 3 of Sundance at the red carpet premiere for Smashed. Head to the 2:35 mark to see Mary talking a little bit about the film:

Secondly, The Wrap also caught up with Mary and her Smashed co-star Aaron Paul, where the two talked about what it was like working on the film together:

And finally, The Playlist caught up with Mary to talk about Smashed and her small role in A Glimpse Inside the Mind of Charles Swan. Be sure to read the full interview by clicking on the Playlist link above. Below are some highlights:

How did you get your head space to align with the character?
Well, I collaborated with James [Ponsoldt, the director] a lot. He was fantastic, and really wanted to help me figure it out. I’m used to figuring out things on my own, so it was nice. We had a couple of weeks leading up to the shoot, got together every day and we just talked about the character and about my life. We found through hours and hours of talking all of the ways that my life and Kate’s life match up, even though on the surface they seem nothing alike. Bringing as much of myself to her as I could, and the fact that James really wanted, that was really exciting for me. He really wanted for me to bring my problems and my faults and all of the things that were good about me and everything to it.

One of the big things I find fascinating about the role is the dynamic with your character and your AA sponsor and your fellow teacher, Nick Offerman’s character. How did you research that kind of thing? How did you get into the AA circle?

I was really lucky that the film was co-written by someone who is a recovering alcoholic and is in AA, also one of our producers is as well. So I was really welcomed into that world. I went to AA meetings with them, and saw lots of different kinds of meetings, and heard lots of different kinds of stories. It’s something that if I hadn’t gone with them, I don’t know if I would have gone, because I would have felt like a fraud coming in and listening in on these people’s really personal stories. They assured me that it was fine, and I was welcome there. There’s a lot of young women in the meetings that I went to, and some that I totally related to and were talking about things that were totally similar to things in my life, and you kind of realize how an alcoholic is not so far different then yourself. That’s what we wanted to do in the film, make it relatable.

You’re working with Roman Coppola on his new film?

I did, yes, a few months ago.

He’s only made one feature [2001’s “CQ”] and it’s a knockout, but what’s the movie like? How would you describe it?
I spent a few days on it, it’s such a tiny part, but it’s such a great group of people that I would have done anything on this film. He’s really close to Jason Schwartzman, who’s a friend of mine, and Aubrey Plaza, and we all kind of just did it because we’re friends and we wanted to work together. So I can’t say that I know a lot about how the film’s going to turn out, because I didn’t see a lot of it, but it’s a crazy imaginative script. It kind of felt like being on a movie set in the ’70s, it had that vibe. He kind of keeps things really fun and exciting. People dressed up in different costumes on the beach, and things that felt really surreal and fun, and I’m excited to see how it turns out.

Did you work with Charlie Sheen in that movie?

A little. My part is very small. I have a small exchange with Charlie. But most of my stuff was with Kathryn Winnick. He was great, though, totally what I would imagine him to be like throughout his career. Just like a really cool, suave, confident guy. And he was really fun to work with and really professional.

Filed in Interviews Movies Smashed

Mary Elizabeth Winstead Talks SMASHED

Hitfix caught up with Mary Elizabeth during her SMASHED press junket the other day & she talked about what it was like filming the movie in 19…yes, 19 days, what she did before filming began, such as attending AA meetings, and how challenging it was to play the role of a drunk. She also said that she’s looking at other projects that’ll challenge her, whether it be another indie film or a big studio film. You can check out the interview below:

Filed in Movies Smashed

Elle Magazine Calls Mary a Sundance Darling

Yeah, Mary! In a new interview with Elle, the site & Sundance Film Festival all agree on one thing–Mary’s the festival’s “Sundance darling.”

Listen closely to the whispers at various Sundance events this week and you’re likely to hear the name Mary Elizabeth Winstead.

Starring in James Ponsoldt’s Smashed, the 27-year-old actress—previous credits include Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World and Live Free or Die Hard—plays Kate, an alcoholic whose relationship with her husband Charlie (Breaking Bad‘s Aaron Paul) is based on their mutual addiction. When Kate decides to get sober, the foundation of their marriage is called into question. Winstead’s controlled and affecting performance has already elicited phrases like “breakout performance” and “Sundance darling” from audiences; Rosemarie DeWitt, who’s here starring in Nobody Walks, told us, “She’s incredible. Just go see it.”

We did. Then we asked Winstead a few questions.

ELLE: Who are Kate and Charlie?
MEW: For a young couple they are really a lot of fun, but their whole marriage is really based around drinking. At a certain point, Kate’s life starts to spiral out of control and she decides to get sober. But Charlie is not really on board because he loves the life they have together. So the film is about them trying to make their relationship work in spite of these challenges. It’s a role that was totally challenging and terrifying to me in a lot of ways. I really wanted it.

ELLE: What was it like acting opposite Jesse Pinkman?
MEW: [Laughs] It was amazing. He’s so warm and giving and willing to do whatever for the sake of the character. That’s exactly what you need when you do a film like this. He was just so kind and when you play this kind of part you really want to make sure you’re surrounded by people you feel comfortable around. But it’s so funny walking around with him here—he gets stopped constantly!

ELLE: Is this your first time at Sundance?
MEW: I actually grew up in Salt Lake City so I used come and walk around Main Street, but this is my first time here as an actress. The premiere last night was just so incredible and emotional. It was one of the best moments…ever. But it was such a nerve-racking and emotional day that at the end of it all I was exhausted. I just went home and crashed.

ELLE: Are there other films or performances you’re most excited to see?
MEW: I have a lot of friends who have films this year so it’s really exciting. My friend Aubrey [Plaza] has Safety Not Guaranteed. Mark Webber has three films here! I want to see Nobody Walks and Hello, I Must be Going. I’m staying through the end so I’m going to try to see it all later this week.

ELLE: The red carpets here are pretty casual. Was it hard deciding what to pack for your first Sundance?
MEW: It’s definitely hard to be super high fashion because you have to be functional. But I brought things that had a bit of a pattern or a pop of color to bring a bit of interest to what I’m wearing. And obviously you need a good parka and good boots—then you’re set.

Filed in Gallery Updates Movies Smashed

Mary Elizabeth Visits the Bing Bar at Sundance plus More Positive Reviews

Another day means more new positive reviews for Mary’s amazing performance in SMASHED. Before I post them though, I’ve added new photos of Mary visiting the Bing Bar at Sundance 2012 where she was doing a press junket for the film. You can see the pics in the gallery or click on the thumbs below:

Now onto the new reviews, the first from THR.

Continue reading Mary Elizabeth Visits the Bing Bar at Sundance plus More Positive Reviews

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Video of the SMASHED Cast at the Sundance Channel HQ

A new video interview from the Sundance channel has been uploaded, where the SMASHED cast all talk about what attracted them to the film and their roles. In the interview, Mary admitted she didn’t think she’d get the part because she was always up for parts where people didn’t think she’d be “edgy or dark enough.”

I do wish the interview had been longer though. The best part of the interview is that we get to see two new stills of Mary in the film. Check out the video below for yourself:

Pictures from that interview are here.