This weekend Amy Adams will headline Anand Tucker‘s latest film Leap Year, a romantic comedy that vaguely resembles her previous work Enchanted. This film doesn’t involve wicked queens, or fabled princes, but centers on a hopeless romantic who tries her best to fit love into her busy schedule. Adams stars as Anna, a real estate professional who’s ready to take the next step with her long term boyfriend. Being the independent, proactive woman that she is, her character takes it upon herself to try and initiate a proposal by flying to Ireland during an unofficial holiday, called Leap Day.
Adams’ character goes through a lot for love in the film, including falling face flat in mud, trekking along the country side in 4 inch heels, and fighting with cows in the middle of the road. When we encountered the actress at the Leap Year press conference, she was perky, polite, and more than willing to talk about her Irish shooting experience. She spoke about the food, the people, and most importantly how awesome it was to work with the charming and hilarious Matthew Goode…
Leap Year centers on a woman taking initiative and proposing to a man, what do you think of that concept? Would you ever consider doing something like that?
Amy: Yeah, it’s something I would consider. I thought about it. I waited for 6 years and I ultimately decided against it because I knew that that was important to my fiance now, I knew that was important to him. But I think if you have the type of relationship where it would be okay with the guy, I don’t see any problem with it.
In the film, your character Anna is very two sided. She’s a cut and dry realist, but a true romantic at heart. What part of her do you relate to the most?
Amy: I think I have both aspects of the character in me, that’s why I was attracted to the character because I tend to be really pragmatic but ultimately I tend to be more attracted to people who pull me into more spontaneity. I’ve learned that through surrender the best experiences of my life have happened. So one of the things that attracted me to this story was thinking I have control, losing control, and finding an amazing life for yourself.
So there’s a bit of spontaneity from you put into the character?
Amy: Am I spontaneous? No, I’m not. I mean I try to be, I work on it. I guess if you’re working on being spontaneous it’s not really being spontaneous. I think I just answered it. Probably not as much as I’d like to be.
A lot of the romantic comedies these days feature very high powered women learning how to take it slow. Why do you think audiences are responding so well to that premise?
Amy: I think because women are taking on more responsibility in the workplace and at home and we’re really trying to have it all. I think it’s very relatable to women and men today to see that in film.
In the movie you wear high heels in almost every scene, even the ones where you were climbing mountains so I wanted to ask you about your shoes. How was it wearing stilettos when so much physicality is involved, and did you have any input on what shoes you wore?
Amy: I did. I did have input. The shot was very specific because I needed a strap. Actually I love high heels and I wear them a lot. So I hate to say it’s easy cause it definitely was a struggle but it wasn’t like learning to walk. But going up the hill was very challenging with the grassy steps and the railroads. I cut my foot at one point and it was really hard cause I had to, you know.
How was it working with Matthew Goode?
He’s great. You guys will see, he’s so charming and he’s funny and he’s smart and he brought so much to this role. He really just enjoyed playing Declan and that was so much fun. I loved the character of Declan so he was absolutely perfect in it.
Can you talk a little about the directing process? Did the director give you some room to do what you wanted or was the script pretty straight forward?
Amy: It totally depended on the scene. There were definitely scenes where we had a lot of room to improv and there were some scenes that were more time specific, you’re a little more constrained but he definitely allowed for a lot of improvisation. Like the scene with the cows. You kind of have to be loose with that, when you’re working with cows and they don’t cooperate. As much as you try to train a cow they’re not programmed to cooperate. He was really great on his feet in dealing with the elements in Ireland. We were always outside with rain and wind and sunny when it was supposed to be raining, raining when it was supposed to be sunny. So we really had to be really loose and I think that was something I took from the film, just loosening up all around.
How important was it working on location with this storyline? Did it help your performance?
Amy: Well it affected it a lot, especially being in Ireland. I really started to understand being able to surrender your entire life to this place and being able to fall in love with a place and and with the people of the place because Ireland really has that quality. They’re just so welcoming and you feel like it’s home. Being in Ireland really helped me understand Anna’s pull towards everything. So I think it was really important. it would have been harder to do in another location.
What did you get into during your down time?
Amy: All sorts of things. I walked everywhere in Dublin. It’s a great walking city. I went to the organic farmers market, I went to the pubs and ate great meals and met awesome people. We would have dinners every once in a while and we would cook at different people’s houses. It’s just very homey in Ireland and very comforting, comfortable. Lot’s of fire places with peat moss fires.
Do you have any other films coming out this year or the next?
How long will you be out of commission?
Amy: I’m not sure. Probably till next summer.
What was it like working with David O. Russell?
Amy: It was awesome, I loved it.
What character did you play?
Amy: I play Mark Wahlberg‘s characters girlfriend whose kind of a straight forward, a little bit rough around the edges Boston girl.
What type of things do you look for in a project? What attracts you? Is it the stories, the characters, or the director?
Amy: I think there’s different things that attract me to each project. Sometimes it’s the director, sometimes it’s just specifically the story sometimes it’s specifically the character. When I look, it’s usually a combination of those things together. Sometimes it’s the mood that I’m in. I feel like, “Oh gosh, I just worked on this really heavy drama, I just need to have fun and let loose.” So it’s different things that drives my decision.
Is there a story you’d like to bring to the big screen and develop yourself?
Amy: Yeah, I’m actually starting to produce more and be involved more in development. I’m looking forward to that and to try that out and see because I really enjoy the creative process of bringing a movie to life. I look forward to being more involved.
Leap Year debuts in theaters nationwide on December 8, 2010.