Meryl Streep won the Best Actress Oscar last year for her portrayal of Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady. Since then, she’s hit our screens again as frustrated housewife Kay who struggles to reinvigorate her marriage to Arnold (Tommy Lee Jones) in Hope Springs. Here, Meryl, 63, who is married to sculptor Don Gummer talks about Hope Springs, and why she’s not a fan of awards ceremonies.
Hope Springs will certainly get people talking.
That would be good because it provoked stuff in me when I read it and I thought, “Nobody is talking about any of this.” We’re just ladling crude, mean, tough, horrible, reality, sex, crime jail reality TV. But the little delicate stuff, stuff that you want to ask of somebody you love, intimate things, is really hard to put on screen. But it’s funny because it’s forbidden.
Do you talk to your friends about personal issues?
My girls, friends and I, we talk about things. And everybody is contending with the same things at a certain point in life, you know. You see certain doors are closed and you are just facing a shorter journey, and you want to know how to make it richer, how to make it mean something and how to make it stay alive.
Is the film only suitable for an older audience, then?
I don’t know, I was in a relationship in college that was stale, and I chafed at it. I don’t think its age specific. I think you can enter that zone of not knowing how to reach each other at any point in an intimate relationship.
Do you think the film makes a stand for marriage?
Whenever you make a movie it’s so interesting because we still do read these things emblematically. We read them as if they stand for all marriages. And because you’ve done this movie, and you’ve been married 30 years, you must know the prescription. But I’m as clueless as the next person!
There are some pretty saucy scenes in the film. Can we expect any outtakes?
If something was funny I would laugh. I just I can’t help it, but there was a lot that was funny.
Were you excited to work with Tommy Lee Jones on the film?
Tommy was a delight. I’ve wanted to work with him for 30 years since we worked at the Public Theater. He was in a Sam Shepard play. God, that was 35 years ago! He’s an incredible actor. I really mean it.
Did you see parts of your own marriage reflected in the film?
Yeah, but we understand each other. He really understands like serial obsession because he has it too. And I think if I was married to somebody who had a nine to five or whatever, he wouldn’t understand.
Do you enjoy all the awards ceremonies?
It is a little bit of an out of body thing because all you are worried about for about four days is what you are going to wear and then that’s over once you walk through the red carpet!
Hope Springs is out on DVD from 25 February. You can enter our competition to win a copy here.