Scarlett Johansson portrays Anna in He’s Just Not That Into You and her issue is infidelity. It is how Johansson pulls from her actor’s toolbox that compels the audience to still adore her for falling in love with Bradley Cooper’s married Ben.
Love or not?
“Even though someone was being hurt in the process, I don’t think my character was bad. I think the two characters really like each other. They connect. You can’t really hate her because she’s being really vindictive in trying to steal a married man,” Johansson tells SheKnows.
“She’s not looking to steal a married man. He’s not looking to have some affair. Both go into knowing there is somebody else in the relationship that they really feel that this is the point in their life – as Drew’s character was saying – sometimes things happen and you don’t want to miss the boat,” Johansson says.
“Who knows? This could be the person you have children with and are married to and spend the rest of your life with.”
Not into me?
Both of their He’s Just Not That Into You characters are, on many levels, people that are compassionately relatable. In the end, it is about love. “I think these two characters feel that way about each other. They make such a connection, through Bradley’s character fault of not being able to man up and really commit, because he has so many weaknesses.”
Cooper hears coming from his co-star and is taken aback. “Who’s weaknesses?,” he says in passing.
Johansson continues. “It’s because of his character’s weaknesses that they don’t…what could have been something ends because she sees he’s just not able to commit. She sees that weakness and it all falls apart. But I think you can’t hate them because they don’t go into with malice. They don’t go into their relationship with a hope to hurt somebody. In life, things happen, don’t they?”
Cooper chimes in with his two cents. “I think it’s easy to vilify these characters, but it’s not in the writing. You feel sorry for them, the wreckage that he’s caused because he’s not a man,” Cooper adds. “But, you can understand him. I’m glad you said that Scarlett, thank you.”
Scarlett’s fiery career
Although she is barely 24, Johansson is a film veteran. Long before serving as Woody Allen’s muse, including the Academy Award-nominated Vicki, Christina, Barcelona, Johansson lost a role to Lindsay Lohan that ended up being a blessing in disguise. Could you picture Scarlett in The Parent Trap? Well, yeah, us too, but what is it that is the secret to Johansson’s extraordinary thespian talents.
“You don’t really want to see the man behind the curtain, do you? Our processes are very introspective ones. It’s strange to share that with the general public. Just as you would not want to tell us about your own therapy sessions. In a way acting is a very cathartic experience,” Johansson says. “You’re imparting your own personal experience into the characters. I’ve never quite been able to grasp the concept of giving away your secrets.”
That could easily apply to Johansson’s life as well. After being photographed with several Hollywood hotties over the years, including Josh Hartnett, Johansson surprised everyone by settling down and marrying fellow actor Ryan Reynolds in 2008.Her steady rise from promising performer to one of the top A-listers in Hollywood has been filled with many ups and few downs. Johansson takes the entire industry in stride. Audiences never read of her getting DUIs or dancing on tables at Hollywood’s hottest clubs.
Johansson has instead produced a dazzling array of films. Her career truly took off after starring opposite Sarah Jessica Parker in If Lucy Fell, Robert Redford in The Horse Whisperer, Bill Murray in Lost in Translation, Dennis Quaid in In Good Company.
She is no stranger to blockbusters either with her unforgettable turns in The Prestige, The Nanny Diaries, The Spirit and now her current cinematic blessing, He’s Just Not That Into You.
Shout out to Baltimore
Although particularly private, Johansson did dish on her affinity for filming in Maryland’s biggest city. “Baltimore’s awesome. I love Baltimore. I was walking around thinking, ‘I could really live here.’ It’s really great city,” Johansson says.
The city plays a huge part of He’s Just Not That Into You feel. Whether it’s Drew Barrymore’s gay newspaper or Jennifer Connelly, Jennifer Aniston and Ginnifer Goodwin’s harbor side spice company, Baltimore is well represented. “I have a lot of friends that come from Baltimore and live there. It’s got a great music scene. It’s just a really happening spot. We went to a couple of really cool museum. The visual museum. The acquarium, it’s very hot.”
As is He’s Just Not That Into You. Stay with SheKnows for our full coverage of this winter must see film.