‘Smashed’ Star Mary Elizabeth Winstead Tries Breaking Bad as an Alcoholic Opposite Aaron Paul
Photo: Sony Picture Classics
Actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead has a massive fan base from roles in "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World," "The Thing," and "Final Destination 3." She has more than 52,000 Twitter followers and counting. Just check out @M_E_Winstead. But the North Carolina-born brunette, 27, was thirsting for a greater challenge than scream queen or love object. She found it playing a co-dependent alcoholic first-grade teacher in James Ponsoldt's Sundance hit "Smashed" opposite "Breaking Bad's" Aaron Paul. Her performance is so contemporary, raw, and fresh, there could be a best-actress Oscar nomination in the wings. Hint, hint.
Thelma Adams: In the course of this movie, your character, Kate, discovers she's more than a party girl; she's an alcoholic. Do you have any addictions?
Mary Elizabeth Winstead: The Internet and television and social media. I'm always on my cell phone. At home, my husband and I both have our computers out, and we have the TV on, and our cell phones, and we're constantly using all three at the same time.
TA: Do you still talk to each other?
MW: We do. We're together and we're constantly commenting on what we're reading on the Internet, what we're seeing on TV, our correspondence. I'm always saying I want to find a place somewhere where I can take off for a week and not take any of it, but he's a little less inclined. He doesn't have problems with it.
TA: You have a twitter handle: @M_E_Winstead.
MW: Yes. I read my feed constantly. I follow a lot of film blogs and film news. And all my friends are on Twitter. It's how we communicate with each other now.
I'm a big retweeter. I try to answer fans when I can, when they're actually asking me something interesting and not just berating me, like "Answer me, follow me back. Retweet me." If a fan asks me a credible question, I try to always answer.
TA: How do your fans feel about "Smashed"?
MW: They're excited. I have a couple of fan sites and they follow my every move; every single photo that comes out ends up on their websites. There's nothing stalkerish about it. They know this is a passion project, so they're all really excited about that for me.
[Related: Adams on Reel Women: Jennifer Lawrence, Sienna Miller, and Newcomer Alicia Vikander Take the Hamptons]
TA: Why is "Smashed" such a passion project?
Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty
Photo: Jason Kempin/Getty
TA: Once you got the role, what did you tap into emotionally from your experience?