throwback thursday: jennifer lawrence has the best #tbt

photo by brantley gutierrez

from our ’09 interview.

This week, Jennifer Lawrence broke her silence about the hacking crime. To celebrate her bravery, we're taking it way back to our '09 interview with The Hunger Games star.

Like any up-and-coming actor worth her salt, Jennifer Lawrence exists in a permanent state of creative hunger. The teen star of TBS' The Bill Engvall Show, who recently made the transition to the big screen in The Burning Plain, is currently being considered for another movie. The film's director is in New York, Lawrence at home in Los Angeles, and her agent has already talked enthusiastically about a conference between the two via Skype. But Lawrence, who desperately wants the part (about which she is not permitted to speak), instead headed directly to LAX and bought a ticket for the next available flight to New York. [2014 edit: We bet $100 this was The Hunger Games!] She was on the east coast by morning, awaiting what will now be a face-to-face meeting later today. 

"I hope the director doesn't think I'm too crazy!" she says in her Midtown hotel room, laughing loudly. "But I am determined. Hey, I have to be."

In The Burning PlainAmores Perros screenwriter Guillermo Arriaga's multilayered feature-length directorial debut that, indeed, burns slow and long and deadly—Lawrence plays a disaffected teen whose actions, upon learning of her mother's infidelity, will haunt her forever. It is a necessarily bleak performance in what is ultimately a bleak and rather unforgiving film, and marks the first piece of serious acting for this 19-year-old who fell into acting more by luck than ambition. 

A Kentucky native, Lawrence was spotting by a casting agent during a vacation in New York five years ago, and hasn't looked back since. She has had small roles in Medium and Monk, as well as her recurring role in Engvall. "I've been blessed, clearly," she says. "And when Guillermo told me I had the part, I couldn't quite believe it."

In the film, she stars as the daughter of Kim Basinger's character, and though Lawrence speaks gushingly of this modern-day legend—"she is just the sweetest, most generous woman; I loved her"—she stopped herself from getting too close to her on set. 

"I regret that now, but my character has such a distance from Kim's that I didn't want to get too friendly just in case it affected my performance," she says in a manner that suggests she has recently graduated from the Robert De Niro School of Acting. "A method actor, me?" She shakes her head. "Nooo. I was learning my way as an actress, that's all. And my character was really pretty dark. It was difficult to shake off sometimes." That said, when she thinks back to the eight-week shoot, what she remembers most is the laughter between takes. "Anyone would think it was a comedy!" 

But make no mistake, The Burning Plain is not a comedy. And neither is her next film, Winter's Bone (due out early 2010), another art-house thriller in which she inhabits a role a world away from her all-American-sweetheart persona on TBS. "I'm so grateful for the sitcom because it allows me to show another, lighter side of myself," she says, though she admits that, "I am drawn to darker characters. I've no idea why." She certainly carries it off, her glacial, almost aloof beauty offset by a voice that could carry a Joan Jett song with wholehearted abandon. It's a voice that doesn't fit such a waif, a voice belonging to someone who surely gets through 40 cigarettes a day. 

"Ha! I get that a lot. People thinking I'm a heavy smoker," she purrs. "But I've never smoked in my life. I just always had a raspy voice. You should have heard me as a kid..."

Photo by Gareth Cattermole / Getty Images.

It marks her third duet with Nas

Here are some words that I never expected to read or hear again: There is a new song with Amy Winehouse. But here we are in 2019, and Salaam Remi has granted me a wish. On Valentine's Day, the Grammy-nominated producer and frequent Winehouse collaborator (also responsible for hits like Miguel's "Come Through & Chill") released "Find My Love" which features rapper Nas and that powerful and haunting voice that I have come to love and cherish so dearly.

Representatives for Remi said that the Winehouse vocals were from an old jam session the two had. Remi was a producer on both of Winehouse's albums, Frank and Back to Black. "Find My Love" marks the third time Winehouse and Nas have done duets under the direction of Remi. They were previously heard together on "Like Smoke," a single from her 2011 posthumous album Amy Winehouse Lioness: Hidden Treasures, and "Cherry Wine" from Nas' 2012 album Life Is Good. Winehouse died of alcohol poisoning on July 23, 2011, before they could complete production on her third album. My heart is still broken about it as she is by far my favorite artist.

"Find My Love" is set to appear on Remi's Do It for the Culture 2, a collection of songs curated by him. Check it out, below.



Photo by Gabe Ginsberg/Getty Images

"In the midst of chaos there's opportunity"

Following the travesty that was Fyre Festival, Ja Rule wants to take another stab at creating a music festival. Good luck getting that off the ground.

On Thursday, the rapper spoke to TMZ, where he revealed that he was planning to relaunch Icon, an app used to book entertainers, which is similar to Billy McFarland's Fyre app. He told the outlet that he wanted to create a festival similar to Fyre to support it.

"[Fyre Festival] is heartbreaking to me. It was something that I really, really wanted to be special and amazing, and it just didn't turn out that way, but in the midst of chaos there's opportunity, so I'm working on a lot of new things," he says. He then gets into the fact that he wants to form a music festival. "[Fyre] is the most iconic festival that never was... I have plans to create the iconic music festival, but you didn't hear it from me."

Ja Rule actually doesn't seem to think he is at all responsible for what came from Fyre Fest, claiming in a Twitter post that he was "hustled, scammed, bamboozled, hood winked, led astray." Even if that's his feeling, he should realize that anyone involved with Fyre shouldn't ever try their hand at music festivals again.