Keira Knightley has opened up about her activism — from apologizing to her then-unborn child about climate change to feeling “utterly stupid” for missing out on a major anti-war march because she was filming Pirates of the Caribbean.
Knightley, who reportedly recently gave birth to her second child, spoke to The Guardian about her new film, Official Secrets. Set in 2003, the political thriller centers on government whistleblower Katharine Gun and the events leading up to the war in Iraq.
The 34-year-old actress told the paper she considered herself politically “engaged” at the time, and took part in an anti-war march. But when it came to London’s massive 2003 protest, she missed out — because of the Disney film that would put her on the map.
”When the big march happened, I was in America shooting Pirates of the Caribbean and feeling utterly stupid that I was in a pirate costume and all my mates were on an anti-war march,” she admitted. “I remember sitting in the makeup bus and there being a conversation along the lines of, ‘We are going into Iraq to pay them back for 9/11’ and thinking, ‘Hold on — I don’t think that was Iraq!’ For my generation it was the first time that we had been really politically engaged — and it didn’t change anything. There was disillusionment after that. Quite severe. The way that we viewed politicians and the world was massively colored by the weeks leading up to that conflict.”
Knightley added that she doesn’t shy away from being outspoken about her views.
“One thing I learned from being in the public eye when I was very young is this: You can say nothing and some people will hate you, and you can say something and some people will hate you,” she said. “So you might as well, if you are feeling like it, say something. If I am asked my opinion, I generally don’t have a problem giving it.”
The Oscar nominee went on to slam “politicians who lie” and spoke of her concerns about climate change.
“I feel I should be branching out more, because I am reading papers that I generally agree with,” the then-pregnant star said of her news consumption. “My husband has — really kindly! — forced me into reading all of the climate change books that he has been reading. Which is just great when you are pregnant. I am halfway through Uninhabitable Earth. I have to do the Naomi Klein next. I spend half my time saying sorry to my baby in there. Maybe I should start reading all those rightwing newspapers and then I could pretend everything will be fine.”
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