Kristen Stewart certainly knows what it’s like to be a young woman at the head of a huge franchise with diehard fans. The Twilight actress gave some pretty solid advice to Daisy Ridley, 23, the star of star of Star Wars: The Force Awakens, on how to handle her new and sudden success in the land of Hollywood.
“Focus on the fact that you’re stoked ’cause you’re doing the work that you want to do,” Stewart said, speaking with the Hollywood Reporter. “It’s literally mainly just about focusing on what makes you happy. And if losing your anonymity or whatever doesn’t make you happy, then focus on something else.”
A recent accomplishment the 25-year-old Kristen Stewart earned was winning a Cesar Award — being the first American actress to ever do so — as well as winning several critics groups’ awards for her role in the French indie film, Clouds of Sils Maria. Stewart plays Valentine, the assistant to film star Maria Enders, played by Juliette Binoche, who stars in the revival of the very first stage play that kick started her career. But why was this particular role something Stewart wanted to sink her teeth into?
“As somebody who’s dealt with the more absurd, really surreal, oftentimes insanely superficial, empty circus of what the media can be — and perception versus reality — I thought it was really funny and appropriate for me to play that part,” she says.
With Kristen Stewart having won the French equivalent of the American Oscar with her Cesar Award, along with the other several awards she’s received for this latest role, she has earned a total of 36 award wins since 2009. Her first win was for the Teen Choice Award, one that she shared with Robert Pattinson, for “Choice Movie Liplock” for 2009’s Twilight. She was only 17-years-old when she first began filming on the romantic/vampire flick, turning 18-years-old when it was finally released. Along with all of the sudden fame and success came the “baggage.”
Kristen Stewart has had her name frequently appear in headlines as she did public interviews, with her appearance and relationships being scrutinized. That shift in her life was quite a big one to deal with, she says, but does not regret going through all of it. Being apart of the Twilight franchise allowed Kristen to still focus on more person and passionate projects, the indie films that she was more accustomed to before she ever auditioned for Bella Swan. Clouds of Sils Maria, which was released in April of 2015, was well received by critics, although it did not find a big audience in theaters. It premiered at the Sundance Film Festival, as did several other indies she starred in, including Adventureland with Jesse Eisenberg, Welcome to the Rileys and The Runaways biopic.
“It moved me in a way that felt really beyond anything I knew it could be,” Stewart says of Clouds. “I’m genuinely just drawn to material that’s moving. Recently I’ve been into slightly more diagonal sort of, a little less straight down the line, in terms of story, and those are always a little bit less commercial.”
Kristen Stewart is not the kind of actress to get caught up in celebrity obsession and hardcore social media engagement, a point which she brings up during the interview when discussing Clouds of Sils Maria. Stewart finds Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook to be simply distracting and offers no kind of substance. When she first received the script for Clouds, it was at a time in her career when she was taking a break, and reading the story moved her enough to want to get back up on the horse and challenge herself. If that kind of exciting stimulation were to disappear, she says she would never act again.
[Photo by Tristan Fewings/Getty Images]