Critical acclaim and a lead role in X-Men: First Class… Jennifer Lawrence looks ready for anything
As Winter’s Bone’s mulish, wind-lashed heroine Ree Dolly, Jennifer Lawrence brings a stinging authenticity to the poor but proud Ozark teen with mountainous woes – skinning squirrels to feed her family and needing to find her meth-cooking daddy before they lose their home. Her performance is so raw and guileless, you’d think the actress had been plucked straight out of the backwoods herself. So imagine our surprise when we saw her sizzling swimsuit spread in American Esquire magazine. Blimey! She looks like that and acts like this? We’re taking notice.
When TF meets Lawrence we’re knocked out in the flesh, too. Where’s the plain, ruddy-cheeked girl who blew us away in Debra Granik’s Sundance smash? She looks like Renée Zellweger genetically reengineered as a supermodel, and is toting talent that has attracted Oscar buzz for the role she nearly didn’t get for being “too beautiful” in Granik’s eyes. “They turned me down twice, which I didn’t take well, so I flew like a psycho on the red eye from LA to New York and showed up at the final auditions,” grins Lawrence. That eye-on-the-prize determination was what drove her to do the Esquire shoot too, unafraid of her parents’ reactions. “They’re actually supportive of the shoot, because they knew why I was doing it.”
That Zen-like approach also extends to Lawrence’s work ethic. She refuses to get less than eight hours sleep and skips late-night candle-burning. “But,” she adds hastily, “I know how to party…”