LOS ANGELES, USA – She might be one of the finest actresses of her generation, but Cate Blanchett “had given up hope” of ever having the chance to work with Woody Allen.
So when the Oscar-winning Australian star was presented with the chance to become the latest in Allen’s long line of iconic leading ladies, Blanchett did not hesitate for a second.
“We’re all the same, when you get Woody’s call, you take it and you’ve already said yes before you know what it is. You just hope it’s a good one,” she said.
“I had given up hope of ever working with him. I thought he wasn’t interested.”
Any uncertainty about the quality of the remarkably prolific Allen’s latest effort, “Blue Jasmine,” has been erased by the reception to the film.
Class and crisis
“Blue Jasmine,” which stars Blanchett as a New York socialite desperately struggling to adjust to the aftermath of her husband’s (Alec Baldwin) financial scandal, has been talked about as one of Allen’s best in years.
For her performance in this film, Blanchett is already seen as an early frontrunner in the next Oscar race. She picked up a supporting-role Oscar for her portrayal of Katharine Hepburn in Martin Scorsese’s biopic on Howard Hughes, “The Aviator (2004).”
“No one has started 2013 Oscar talk quite like Cate Blanchett’s unanimously acclaimed performance in ‘Blue Jasmine,'” said Hollywood industry blog Deadline.com.
Blanchett, who could join the likes of Diane Keaton, Dianne Wiest, Mira Sorvino, and Penelope Cruz as actresses whom Allen has helped to win an Oscar, said she was mesmerized at once by “Blue Jasmine.”
“The minute I read the script it was fantastic,” the actress said at a press conference in Beverly Hills.
“It’s impeccably structured, it’s absurd and tragic, often simultaneously.”
Fascination for women
But for all the Oscar buzz, the opportunity of working with Allen was itself the reward.
“I feel privileged to be playing the title role in a Woody Allen film,” she said. “He’s influenced the popular culture in ways that we can’t even know.”
The 77-year-old film director once said in an interview, “My heart is in it more when I’m writing for women.”
With “Blue Jasmine,” he has delivered another superb female character study.
“If you think about all of those extraordinary female creations he’s drawn with such wonderful actresses, he’s fascinated with and loves women – their exuberance, their intelligence, their fears, their phobias,” Blanchett said.
Blanchett’s own character, a woman set adrift from her privileged moorings, is a case in point.
And with America emerging from one of the hardest recessions in the country’s history, Blanchett finds her character in the film very much a product of her times.
“I think it’s happening all over America and all over the world, when people’s sense of self is being bound up in, A., a relationship and, B., a financial status, the social circle,” Blanchett said. – Rappler.com
Here’s a trailer of ‘Blue Jasmine’: