Emma Watson Gets Real With Jessica Chastain On The ‘Overwhelming’ Fear Of ‘The Circle’

The Harry Potter film franchise launched Emma Watson into superstardom, enabling her to sculpt her acting career with roles that interested her and all but promised commercial success. Even when she wasn’t performing on a sound stage, Watson has been taking her place in the political theater, speaking out for the causes that really inspire her and mean something to her on a personal level. That much time spent in the spotlight may have helped Emma seem as close to perfection as any human can get, but she now reveals that even that is an illusion.

Emma Watson Faces Fear Every Time She’s Exposed to the Public Spotlight

Emma Watson, Jessica Chastain
Emma Watson tells Jessica Chastain (not pictured) about overcoming her fears. [Image by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images]

While Emma has spent a considerable amount of time under the harsh light of cameras over the past 16 years, People shares that the Beauty and the Beast actress still struggles with the butterflies that we all feel in tense moments. Watson says she feels that pressure more keenly than most, because she knows that her every public moment is criticized with the harshest scrutiny.

“And sometimes the fear of doing things is overwhelming. I get incredibly overwhelmed, and sometimes feel hemmed in by that, afraid of that,” says Ms. Watson. “But I know that if I live in that fear, then my life as an artist, as a human being, really, is over. Ultimately, it will silence me, and it will silence what is in me — which I have yet to explore and uncover.”

When she was first starting out, and even during her time as Hermoine Granger in the Harry Potter films, Emma confesses that she felt as though she had been living a dream. She was in a fairy tale, and for that reason, she was fearless. Now, age and wisdom has added the fear of failure and that’s something Watson has to push through in almost everything she does.

Watson says her role in Beauty and the Beast stirred some of that fear, when it was revealed she would be singing in her role as Belle. The media questioned whether she could perform in that capacity, echoing Watson’s own concerns, but she forced herself through it and found an enchanting singing voice buried within.

When Emma does accomplish something that has stressed her with fear of failure, she says she finds the greatest rewards in those moments.

“No one likes feeling vulnerable and uncomfortable and weak,” says Ms. Watson. “But I really have found that it’s in those moments when I go there that there’s a kind of magic.”

Emma Reveals How The Circle Has Changed Her Life

Emma Watson, The Circle, Tom Hanks
Emma Watson stars in 'The Circle' with Tom Hanks. [Image by Theo Wargo/Getty Images]

In speaking with actress Jessica Chastain (The Martian, Mama) for Interview, Emma also spoke about her upcoming film, The Circle, which casts her opposite Tom Hanks. In the film, Watson says technology takes over every aspect of human life from basic needs like food and shelter to our need to feel love and to give love. Emma adds that The Circle also mirrors current social issues in the way that female presences in business settings are limited, comparing that aspect of the story to All About Eve (1950).

“I read the book first, and I could not stop thinking about it. It’s not like a dystopian future — it could be tomorrow,” says Ms. Watson.

Ms. Chastain asked Emma if starring in The Circle has altered her views on the use of technology. Watson says the story has definitely changed her outlook, especially from the standpoint of wanting to be a parent one day.

Watson points out that there are entire generations of children growing up with most of their lives made public via the internet, before they’re even old enough to have a say in the matter. The Circle star believes every individual should be able to choose what’s being shared about them.

“I love social media, and I love what it can do and how it brings people together, but used in the wrong way, it’s incredibly dangerous.”

Watson says she uses technology as much as anyone, or, at least, she did before getting cast in The Circle. Now, she limits herself. Before taking off on the press tour for The Circle, Watson deleted her email app from her phone, because she saw that as her greatest weakness.

“We need to make sure that we are using technology, and technology is not using us,” warns Emma Watson.

The Circle, starring Emma Watson, Tom Hanks, and John Boyega, opens in theaters on April 28.

[Featured Image by Theo Wargo/Getty Images]