Two Days Before Oscar Nomination Deadline, Jennifer Lawrence Tells Vanity Fair 'Acting Is Stupid'

Jennifer Lawrence Acting Is Stupid

With the deadline for Academy Award nominations just two days away, perhaps it's not the best time for Jennifer Lawrence to be talking about how acting is "stupid." But that's what she does in the new issue of Vanity Fair. Jennifer Lawrence Vanity Fair Interview

The actress, whose performance in David O. Russell's Silver Linings Playbook should put her in the running for a Best Actress Oscar, is the cover girl for the magazine's February issue in which she's named "The Most Desirable Woman of 2013."

But her perspective on acting may not sound so desirable to actors casting their votes for the first stage of the Oscar sweepstakes.

“Not to sound rude, but [acting] is stupid,” Lawrence says. “Everybody’s like, ‘How can you remain with a level head?’ And I’m like, ‘Why would I ever get cocky? I’m not saving anybody’s life. There are doctors who save lives and firemen who run into burning buildings. I’m making movies. It’s stupid.’”

Okay, so Lawrence hasn't pulled a Joaquin Phoenix and declared the awards race "the stupidest thing in the whole world."  The context of her comment is unclear because Vanity Fair has yet to release the full story in which this quote appears, but Lawrence sounds like she's merely being self-deprecating in a safely provocative way.

And yet, as much as I admire candor, if I was part of Lawrence's management team, I'd be telling her to can the "acting-is-stupid" comments until after awards season. I have to imagine that there are a fair number of self-important Academy voters/actors who don't want to hear their profession belittled, especially since they're not getting the kind of sought-after roles that Lawrence keeps getting.

[Vanity Fair]

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  • Winston says:

    It helps to read the article. She was talking about the exaggerated importance associated with the profession and the culture of celebrity, which she has stated often before. And notice that "acting" is in parentheses, which indicates that the writer is interpreting somwhat. The only ones offended by the truism that actors are not as important in real life as a doctor or firefighter are self-important divas like Lindsay Lohan. Acting is just a job, and the more celebrities that accept that idea, the better.

  • Megan says:

    She's right, ya know. If the Academy ever overlooked her talent because of a comment like that, it'd be a shame. And she doesn't say it with nearly the same vitriol that Joaquin Phoenix did. Although I still think Joaquin Phoenix is mentally disturbed...

    • Frank DiGiacomo says:

      I appreciate your smart comments and mostly agree with you on principle. BUT I think you're both underestimating the pettiness and, on occasion, the sheer lunkheadedness of Academy voters.

      • Winston says:

        You do notice that the phrase "acting is stupid" is never actually spoken? The phrase from the article was "Not to sound rude, but [acting] is stupid..." Not that what she said is the slightest bit wrong even with that interpretation, but what a writer places in those brackets can completely change the meaning. Having watched two long interviews that Lawrence had with David Poland, she is always talking about the need for actors to avoid a diva mentality and that the profession is not important enough to justify it. So we would have pettiness based on a very likely misinterpretation. When you see brackets it indicates that the writer is interpreting or summarizing.

    • Lisa says:

      ...and thank God he is because he continues to show us that rare talent called acting!

  • Remy says:

    You've missed the real story, which is that there's a picture in the new Vanity Fair of Jennifer Lawrence wearing leopard skin leggings, a bow on her head and a come hither look on her face, bent over a car like she's ready to be humped.

    • Frank DiGiacomo says:

      Very good point. In other words, acting is stupid but lolling around on the hood of sports car like you're in a Whitesnake video is not.

  • maro1234 says:

    The comment was taken out of context...I do think it's important to read the article. It sounds more to me, that Lawrence is really putting herself down more than anything. I do find it strange that Vanity Fair decided to use this quote (two days before Oscar Ballots are due)to send out into the internet before the magazine hits shelves... after the ballots are collected. So, someone else who is up for Best Actress and perhaps afraid that Lawrence will win might have a friend over at Vanity Fair??? (LOL). It kind of seems a little like sabotage on VF's part. I'm joking. A little. Jennifer Lawrence will be nominated but even if she doesn't win, it will have more to do with the fact that Lawrence is only 22....she'll most likely score the Oscar as she nears 30...that's how it always seems to work for beautiful, talented (in Lawrence's case, extremely talented) actresses.

    • Bob Schubring says:

      Thank you! Also, I _finally_ found the actual quote from Lawrence. The context of her remark, was that a disabled child suffering burns, visited Lawrence on set, stating that she proudly calls herself "The Girl On Fire", after Lawrence's role in the Hunger Games. Which story reduced Lawrence to tears, whereupon she remarked that this was the first time she felt that her acting had been genuinely helpful to anyone. And her meaning, clearly, is that it is stupid to idolize actors. My, how confusing it is to misquote someone!

  • djmr4812 says:

    One more is up with the caption that reads: "One Million Men Say Jennifer Lawrence is the World's Most Desirable Woman" (???). Screw VF and their BS, with no mention of her talent?. Instead a caption that was borrowed from Yeah, considering the tactics being used by VF with this issue, I would think that most actors who are doing the voting would see that Lawrence was quoted out of context and that Vanity Fair is so full of s**t they float. Jennifer Lawrence is a critically acclaimed actress with an Oscar nomination under belt, it's VF that's being disrespectful. I wonder if Harvey Weinstein will be giving the editors a call (if he hasn't already)and those actors who would vote for Lawrence based on her performance will not change their minds because of a calculated pull quote from Vanity Fair.

  • Whoever she is, she's right. And the other fellow, the vitriolic chap, is even more so. So the truth sends the lemmings to the cliff, frothing at the mouth with anger----that their ruse has been trumpeted.

  • poppy says:

    I WISH I could scream to Vanity Fair "HAVE YOU LOST YOUR FUCKING MIND???" her (jennifer) quote totally taken out of context,I think the 'stupid' stuff is refers to the people's question on how she kept on level head and rerer to the 'acting' but I hope this stupidity quote from Vanity Fair wont get to all Oscar voters because I BELIEVE ALL THE OSCAR VOTERS ARE SMART PEOPLE WHO WILL VOTE BASED ON PERFORMANCE AND NOT STUPID TWISTED QUOTE FROM A MAGAZINE

  • Frank DiGiacomo says:

    Love the comments here, but I would like to point out that having worked extensively with the story's writer, Jim Windolf, and Vanity Fair's rigorous fact-checking and copy-editing departments, I cannot imagine that Lawrence's comment was taken out of context. That's an argument that celebrity publicists tend to use when they're covering either their client's ass or their own.

    • Rosie says:

      Ok. But explain why the writer choses a stupid ask men quote about her desirability as the headline? Its pretty regressive. Jennifer Lawrence is a very accomplished actress and didnt arrive at the top of her profession by way of her looks. I am a regular VF reader but i am really put off by this issue and the way they have chosen to present perhaps the most talented young actress of our generation, when they FINALLY put her on the cover ( long overdue in my opinion, even robert pattison who cant act to save his life has had something like 3 VF covers, lindsay lohan has also had several and she hasnt done any work in years)

      • Julie says:

        Note that the writers do not choose the headlines. And I think the article portrays her as smart, interesting and down to earth. Did you read it?

  • Bob Schubring says:

    Having just wasted an hour watching NBC's "Chicago Fire", I agree with Jen Lawrence. Playing firefighter is not nearly as important, as doing the job in real life. Truly great acting arises from study of those we portray. In all her roles to date, Jen has gone to much effort to make her portrayals realistic, with the meticulous attention to detail one expects from Daniel Day-Lewis or Tom Clancy. We don't call Day-Lewis' performance in "Lincoln" stupid...but much acting is stupidly done, usually in response to stupider writing, direction, and production. Thanks, Jen, for putting quality first!

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