Emma Stone recently turned 30. “I got gloomy for about a week,” the Arizona-born actress tells Vogue features director Giles Hattersley in the February issue. “But realised the most interesting part about becoming an adult is most things become bittersweet. I’m still finding my voice.”
What life lessons has she gleaned along the way? “It’s OK if not everybody likes you,” she shares on an autumn afternoon in Hampstead pub The Holly Bush. “So that was a major lesson, not falling over myself to win over the unwinnable.” What else? “Nobody knows what they’re doing! We’re all just a bunch of people trying to figure out how to get through the day.”
Stone has been thinking a lot about the odd in-between feeling that can hit at the tail end of a person’s twenties. Indeed, at the peak of her career, she took a year off to recalibrate. “I haven’t worked since last December – by the time I work again, it will have been 14 months.” What has she been doing? “F**k, I do not know,” she offers. “I didn’t learn a language, I didn’t learn to cook, I’ve been a little… drifty.”
The Oscar winner is back on our screens, however, in The Favourite, a period piece directed by Yorgos Lanthimos, set at the court of Queen Anne and co-starring Olivia Colman and Rachel Weisz. Of working with Stone and delving into the queen’s well-documented bisexuality, Colman tells Hattersley: “I put a damp sponge between my legs [during an intimate scene], because I thought it would be funny for Emma to find. You can see in her face the sudden look of horror.”
In another such scene, Abigail (played by Stone) tends to the monarch’s gout-ridden legs by laying raw steaks on them. “The steaks were very real and there was a fire behind us and they were getting very room temperature,” reveals Stone.
If that doesn’t spur you on to watch the wildly outré film ahead of awards season, we don’t know what will. Read the full interview in the February issue of Vogue, which is out on newsstands now.