In American Hustle, Christian Bale plays Irving Rosenfeld, a con man with a manipulative wife named Rosalyn (Jennifer Lawrence). We asked Bale what it was like to perform opposite the young woman who's best known to teen girls as Katniss Everdeen.
"Jennifer is really easygoing. I was really worried that she was going to be far too young for the character. I’m 40 and she’s 22, I think, and I thought, 'What’s that going to mean about Irv and everything?'"
But Jennifer's classy professionalism easily won him over. "She's got such talent. She came in and we discussed [our relationship] and she created this wonderful character that you absolutely buy."
Bale explained further about Irving and Rosalyn's marriage, "They have this toxic relationship — she has these slight father issues. She leverages her real son with Irv, who's adopted Danny (played by Danny and Sonny Corbo). And you just buy it, she's a lot of fun and she really conveys that in the film."
We wanted to know if Bale ever got frustrated with Lawrence's conniving character.
"Absolutely. There's that one scene that is really interesting the way we shot it. It was scripted entirely differently but David [O. Russell] said, 'That’s not what I want anymore.' There was a big plot point happening and he said, 'I'm not interested in that plot any longer,' and we sat for 10 minutes in a different room and we kind of just talked about where we should start, where should we end, roughly what would we say, and then, 'All right, Christian and Jennifer, you just go for it, see what happens.'"
So which scene got reinvented by the actors while shooting?
"It's the scene where Irv goes in, he's saying, 'You almost got me killed, your new boyfriend is threatening to kill me,' and by the end of the scene, he ends up thanking [Rosalyn] for that."
Rosalyn is one manipulative b****! So what does that say about their relationship? "It just shows that in his life outside of the home, he's the con man, everyone else is the mark. But within his own house, he doesn't have a hope. She is the supreme con artist and he is the mark and she can just twist everything around to suit her own needs."
Watch our interview to find out what three words Amy Adams would use to describe Jennifer Lawrence.
American Hustle is currently out in theaters in limited release, but will open wide Dec. 20.
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