Watch more of Kristen's interview in these clips HERE
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The star of "Twilight" Kristen Stewart was in Cannes on Friday (May 23) for the screening of Palme d'Or contender "Clouds of Sils Maria" and in an interview with Reuters Television on Saturday (May 24) she opened up about her views on money, fame and the Hollywood lifestyle.
In her latest movie, which also stars Cannes regular Juliette Binoche and "Kick-Ass" actress Chloe Grace Moretz, Stewart plays the personal assistant of Binoche's character Maria Enders who is an actress having problems with growing old and how the film industry reacts to her aging.
In light of her worldwide fame after starring in "Twilight" Stewart found it particularly interesting to play a role that had her commenting on Hollywood from an outsider's perspective. "It happened to be the perfect project timing wise. Just coincidentally I think the fact, you know, just my experience with my career how it's gone, you know, "Twilight" blew up, I'm extremely famous, it's interesting for me to play an actresses' assistant who then comments on that world, and how it works and how superficial it can be," said the 24 year-old.
Stewart's own frustrations with certain aspects of the Hollywood lifestyle were apparent when she revealed her view that moviemaking has become a "product oriented business" focused on making money which can have a negative effect on the overall quality of a film. "It could be so easy to be enticed by people kind of wanting to step in and tell you how to do things and, 'Ooh, you should do this'. And people wanna make...especially in the States it's about money. People make movies. It's turned into such a product oriented business that it kinda sucks because if we're gonna make...the work that we make will not be as good because we're always concerned about the end result rather than being motivated by the desire to do it."
Stewart praised Cannes' less market oriented focus and expressed her belief that there can sometimes be more freedom in moviemaking in Europe. "It's not absent in the States, but it's not prevalent to feel free within the film industry, to feel like you can say what you wanna say not with any concern about like how people are gonna react to it, whether you're gonna piss them off or whether you're gonna move...you're trying to move yourself. If you're moved, then other people will be moved. So, here, it seems like people are less afraid because again they're doing it for themselves. It's for the art of it, it's not to market things. It's just...it's a good feeling."
It seems clear from her words that Stewart values the artistic quality of filmmaking and ultimately has a high regard for the importance of movies and the great variety of messages they can put across to the viewer.
"You know, to make a movie is so ridiculous. We're going to go film each other pretending to be other people so other people can watch us pretending to be other people? It's insane. But if it's worth it and it's saying something like it can be...it can be transcendentally important." Although Stewart has made a significant range of movies since "Twilight", including the drama "Camp X-Ray" (2014) and "Welcome to the Rileys" (2010) in which she starred opposite James Gandolfini as a 16 year-old stripper, the actress will mostly be associated with her part in the vampire movies as Bella Swan. But she insists she is not making such a diverse range of films to change people's views of her.
"I don't do what I do to sort of like control perception or make people think a certain way about me. That would be traipsing all over the experience of making any film," she said. Stewart then went on to say she could not understand how actors can navigate a career simply doing it for other people. "It's just so ass-backwards to me. I don't know how people do that. I don't know how people tactfully traverse their careers. I don't know how they choose, 'Well, this is a different side of me people have not seen and so I will present that to them now'. It's like why are you doing this for other people? You should be doing it for yourself. And so I've functioned from that position since I started and therefore I really don't care about all that."
During her interview with Reuters Television Stewart also revealed she has ambitions outside of acting and has directed a small music video, but she is very aware that any creative project she is involved in, no matter how small it is, will entail a strong degree of critical scrutiny because of her worldwide status.
"I wanna make movies one day, like absolutely I wanna direct movies and I directed this music video and I was like it's just this dinky little thing and it's fun and I'm so happy to do it but it's gonna be a big deal no matter what. Even if I shoot it on a Polaroid camera people will be like, 'What did she do? Let's take a look'. It's like how about you give me a second to figure it out? So, yeah, that's not something to complain about. It's incredible that I can do that. It's just kind of weird. It's different," said the actress.
"Clouds of Sils Maria" failed to grab the Palme d'Or at Cannes' closing ceremony on Saturday (May 24) as the award went to "Winter Sleep", which was directed by Turkish filmmaker Nuri Bilge Ceylan. Stewart's next projects include the Tim Blake Nelson movie "Anesthesia" and she will also be co-starring with Cannes' Best Actress award winner Julianne Moore in "Still Alice" which is currently due to be released in 2015.