Carey Mulligan, George Clooney, Damian Lewis and Hugh Bonneville were among the famous faces who attended a star-studded White House dinner during a visit by the British Prime Minister.
The actors – along with American Vogue editor Anna Wintour, The Wire‘s Idris Elba, Downton Abbey’s Elizabeth McGovern and movie mogul Harvey Weinstein – were at the glitzy event held by US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle in honour of David Cameron and wife Samantha.
English folk-rock band Mumford & Sons – a favourite of Mrs Cameron – and US R&B star John Legend provided entertainment, while produce from the White House’s own kitchen gardens was used in the winter harvest-themed meal.
Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson, Olympic gold medallist Denise Lewis and golf star Rory McIlroy were also on the guest list, along with politicians George Osborne and William Hague.
The US President praised the Camerons for their “strength” as parents as he toasted them at the dinner, held in a marquee on the South Lawn.
In the 1970s, through 1980, the photographer Francesca Woodman made images of young women, most often herself, in a blurry, foggy, subliminal state. She called one famous series her ghost pictures. They were achieved through slow shutter speeds, which meant that instead of being the record of a blinked instant, they captured movement through time and mid-air: in one a female figure leans forward, body flexed, awkward, in fizzing focus, while her head shakes frantically, blurrily, as if ridding herself of a wasp. Many of the figures are almost transparent. I am here, they insist. But watch me disappear.
When Carey Mulligan was working on her latest film, Shame, she saw a documentary about the Woodman family and Francesca’s work inspired her character Sissy – a damaged, needy, tinnily upbeat young woman, whose singing act becomes her last desperate attempt to forge a relationship with her brother. When she is working on a film, says Mulligan, she often makes scrapbooks for her character. “It really is so childish. It’s like my way of saying,” – she puts on a child’s voice – “‘I’m qualified!’ … I had little Woodman pictures in the book, stuff like that.” Her voice goes quiet. “If anyone ever read them I’d be mortified because they’re just full of shit. They’re not clever and there’s nothing creative in them. It’s just me reassuring myself.”
The annual Met Costume Institute Gala is considered by many to be the biggest night in the fashion calendar. And this year’s looks set to be no exception.
Carey Mulligan, Anna Wintour, and Miuccia Prada will co-host the 2012 event, which will take place on May 7.
The committee will be rounded out by Great Gatsby director Baz Luhrmann as Exhibition Creative Consultant, and Nathan Crowley as Production Designer.
Carey has just won the best supporting actress award at the Hollywood Film Awards as well as the Detroit Film Critics Society Awards for her role in the tense drama Shame, directed by Steve McQueen where she plays Sissy, sibling to Michael Fassbender’s character, Brandon. AGENT2 brings you this interview before the UK release of Shame.
Your character in Shame, Sissy, is another fantastic and really interesting part…
Yes. My agent gave me the script. She read it and she told me that there is this insane part of Michael Fassbender’s sister and I read it and I thought, ‘No way on earth will Steve McQueen ever let me play this.’ I thought they would cast someone gritty and American. So I met Steve thinking that there was no way this would come off and he kept on trying to leave! Like ten minutes into our meeting, he was like, ‘Right, okay, thanks.’ And I was, ‘Oh, no!’ And I kept making him sit down again.
What did you say to him?
I just said, ‘Look, Steve, the thing is’, and then I wouldn’t have anything to say. But we did end up talking about The Seagull, which is my big obsession. Playing Nina in The Seagull, I have never really recovered from it and I want to play Nina for the rest of my life, but I couldn’t find a film role that was on the same level, or as difficult or as interesting. Then when I read Shame I thought it was as difficult as Nina and that is what I told him, to convince him to let me do it.
Stage and screen star Carey Mulligan has been added to the line-up for The New York Times’ Arts & Leisure Weekend, and will be featured in a talk on January 8 from 2pm to 3:15pm.
As previously reported, this four-day celebration of the arts will take place at The TimesCenter, January 5-8, 2012.
Highlights will include the cast and creators of CBS drama The Good Wife — including Emmy Award-winner Julianna Margulies, Christine Baranski, Josh Charles and the show’s creators, Robert and Michelle King (January 6 at 6pm); Emmy Award winner and Grammy Award nominee David Cross (January 5, 8pm); award-winning actor and director Alan Rickman, currently on Broadway in Seminar (January 7, 10am); celebrated composer and musician Philip Glass (January 7, 2pm); and Oscar nominee Michael Shannon (January 7 at 4pm).
Among the other featured artists are Chris Cornell, Patricia Cornwell, Clive Davis, Simon Doonan, Paul Feig, Alison Krauss, Cesar Millan, Errol Morris, Will Reiser, Seth Rogen, and Kristen Wiig.
Click here for more information and Arts & Leisure Weekend tickets.
Carey Mulligan found herself propelled onto the world stage after she was nominated for an Oscar for her portrayal of the sharp, witty and painfully young Jenny Mellor in 2009s “An Education.” Though doors began to open for the actress, she was disappointed to discover that most of them led to rooms of similar shapes and sizes. “A lot of people just wanted me to sort of do what I had already done,” she recalls. “Films that reminded me of that part weren’t films that I was interested in.”
If there is such a thing as a safe and secure course in the development of an ingénue’s career anymore, then Mulligan has chosen not to follow that trajectory. The actress took one leading, and several supporting roles (the most high-profile of which was in Oliver Stone’s “Wall Street: Money Never Sleeps”) after “An Education” and then stopped working for a year.
When she returned it was in pursuit of projects that would move her beyond the limited scope of the classical leading lady and/or give her the opportunity to work with filmmakers that she found compelling. She began with director Nicolas Winding Refn’s urban fable/meditation on violence, “Drive.”