Comic-Con: Roundtable with Gwyneth Paltrow
Gwyneth Paltrow is movie royalty – her mother is Blythe Danner and her godfather is Steven Spielberg – but you wouldn't know it from just meeting her. The A-list actress is one of the most down-to-earth people you'll ever meet, and though she was once known as “that actress who was engaged to Brad Pitt,” she's now married to “that guy from Coldplay.” She's also one of the best actresses of her generation, so it certainly raised a few eyebrows when she picked “Iron Man” as her grand return to the big screen. While sitting down to chat with Bullz-Eye and a small group of writers at Comic-Con, Gwyneth talked about why she chose the project as her next movie, her husband's cameo on “Extras,” and even let something slip about “Iron Man” that, well, she probably shouldn't have said.
Reporter: What's it feel like to be in a superhero movie?
Gwyneth Paltrow: It was so great. I never expected to have so much fun and I absolutely loved doing it. I loved my character and I loved working with Robert [Downey Jr.], Terrence [Howard] and Jeff Bridges, and it's just, it was a great way to come back to work, you know after a few years of not working.
Reporter: When you read the script, what made you want to do the project?
GP: It was even before I read the script. I love Jon Favreau's films, I've always wanted to work with Robert Downey Jr. – always, always, you know I've always loved him – and you know, I used to watch him in movies when I was a teenager, and he's so brilliant. And so, the combination of him, Jon, Terrence and Jeff Bridges – I mean, he's the Big Lebowski, and you know, I must've watched “Jagged Edge” 800 times on Betmax growing up, so, I've always loved him, and then to read the script and it was actually really good, and so I felt really lucky to be asked to do it.
Reporter: How do you think this stacks up to other sci-fi movies that you've done? Like “Sky Captain [and the World of Tomorrow]?”
GP: Um, I think that's my only other one, isn't it? Well, it's a very different … that movie was like doing, you know, an off Broadway play, because it was all in a blue room, and we didn't know what we were doing, and I had never done anything like that. And that was like this experimental thing that was also really interesting to do. I really liked doing it, I'm really glad I did it, but to do a movie like this – “Iron Man” – that has this amazing life that precedes the movie, and it has a whole group of people who have this fervent passion about it.
Reporter: Pepper's a really strong female character.
GW: Yes. She's very strong, she's kind of the moral center of the movie, and she's amazing – she's a great character. I love her; I loved playing her.
Reporter: Are you similar to her at all?
GP: To Pepper? Yeah, I am. I'm very organized like Pepper (laughs), but I always think you bring parts of yourself into a character. You find parallel things that you have, but I don't have a complicated relationship with a superhero. (thinking about the fact that she's married to Coldplay's Chris Martin) I kind of do, actually. (laughs)
Reporter: Do you have a budding relationship with the character of Happy Hogan like Pepper does in the books?
GP: Um (looking anxious) Am I allowed to talk about this? Where's Kevin Feige? (Editor's Note: He is the film's producer) Kevin?
Reporter: He said yeah, we asked him.
GP: He did? OK. (laughs) He, um, there's sort of room for it. We don't know.
Reporter: So there is a Happy Hogan?
GP: Happy Hogan – am I allowed to say that? – yes, he's in it. You know who he is in it?
Reporter: (obviously lying) Yeah.
GP: OK, fine. I know, they freak you out. It's like “Don't say anything, don't say this, don't say that,” and everything.
Reporter: Well, don't say any names then, so you don't get into trouble.
GP: No, it's OK. Happy Hogan is in the movie, he's in the movie – God, I hope Kevin doesn't kill me – and they just have a professional relationship in the movie. He doesn't have a big part. It's more of a cameo in the movie.
Reporter: Did you get action scenes in the movie? Did you have to train or anything?
GP: I had to train. I didn't have too much – I had an action sequence at the end, but they wanted me in tip-top shape.
Reporter: Do you recommend this movie for the girls?
GP: Oh, definitely. This is not a movie only for guys, you know, there's a lot in it for… You know, I think the relationship, all of the relationship stuff -- not just between me and Robert, but between Robert and Jeff Bridges, and Terrence and Robert, and me and Terrence and me and Jeff -- it's all like really good stuff. And so, yeah, I think women will be happy to accompany their guys.
Reporter: Jon [Favreau] is a very funny guy. Did he bring that… are you having fun, are you laughing on the movie?
GP: Oh, I had a great time. There's a lot of good humor. He's very, very dry, but my relationship with Robert – there's a very playful funny side to the relationship.
Reporter: Did you like the red hair?
GP: Yes, I did like my red hair very much.
Reporter: Did your husband like the red hair?
GP: Yeah, he did. (laughs)
Reporter: And along that line, are you making drumsticks tonight? (Editor's Note: This is a reference to Chris Martin's guest spot on the HBO/BBC series “Extras”)
GP: (laughs) Oh, god, “Extras.”
Reporter: Did you get a big laugh out of that?
GP: I thought it was brilliant. I thought he was really, really good. I didn't know he was such a good actor.
Bullz-Eye: Did Ricky [Gervais] ever approach you about making a cameo?
GP: Well, yeah. Originally, he wanted us to be in it together, but we're not so into doing stuff in public together, so – and Chris is the rabid “Office” and “Extras” fan – he did it and I thought he was great.
Bullz-Eye: One final thing: When “Iron Man” becomes the biggest movie of next year…
Bullz-Eye: …and they greenlight a sequel, would you be excited to go back?
GP: Definitely. I had such a great time. I mean, I felt so lucky to be a part of it, and I hope they make tons of them.
Reporter: You're Pepper Potts now – we don't want anybody else.
GP: (laughs) Thanks.