Friday, November 16, 2007

Is Harry Potter star Emma Watson turning into Keira Knightley?

The trouble with being successful and glamorous is, there is always someone younger and more ambitious coming up behind you.

So move over Keira Knightley, for Emma Watson yesterday gave her older competition a run for her money with a dramatic transformation from child star to grown-up starlet.

The 17-year-old Harry Potter actress, Emma Watson has been keen to distance herself from her schoolgirl character.

And judging by the elegant Chanel outfit and slick of siren red lipstick which replaced her school garb, the A-level student is coming of age at a rapid pace.

As she attended an exclusive dinner hosted by fashion designer Karl Lagerfeld, the immaculately-dressed Miss Watson had even perfected the hand on dropped hip which has become Miss Knightley's trademark red carpet pose.

Like Miss Watson, 22-year-old Miss Knightley began her career as a child actress, starring in Bend It Like Beckham when she was aged 17.

Both young women come from respectable, close-knit families. And both have been courted as muses by the fashion label Chanel.

Emma Watson won a reported £500,000 contract to be the face of the perfume Coco Mademoiselle and is set to play Coco Chanel in a film about her life.

But it was her younger rival - who is on the books of model agency Storm - chosen to be an ambassador for Chanel's fashion range, often appearing on the red carpet and as a cover girl in its lavish outfits.

And in a further snub to Miss Knightley, her fellow actress topped her in a magazine poll of Britain's greatest female role models earlier this year.

Yesterday was no exception to her new appeal with Miss Watson - who has been playing Hermione Granger since she was 11 - donning a black silk pleated dress and shimmering sequined jacket.

In a bid to shed her goody two shoes image, the star partied the night away with Kate Moss and Kelly Osbourne.

Kylie Minogue, Natalie Imbruglia and Sean Lennon joined the glamorous party in London's Nobu restaurant.

A fellow guest at a recent charity gala attended by Emma Watson said: 'She is incredibly self-assured and despite following the likes of Elle Macpherson, is not bothered in the slightest. She is a star and knows it.'

Emma Watson, who is the new face of the iconic brand, was also joined at the event by Charlotte Casiraghi, daughter of Princess Caroline of Monaco, actress Thandie Newton, Sophie Ellis Bextor and Natalie Imbruglia.

Models including Claudia Schiffer, Jodie and Jemma Kidd, Erin O'Connor and Agyness Deyn also attended the affair, which was thrown in honour of Lagerfeld.

Emma Watson's glamorous arrival comes just days after she unveiled her grown up new look in the pages of a glossy magazine.

In the fifties inspired shoot, she looked a world away from the most famous schoolgirl on the planet, Hermione Grainger, the heroine of the films based on JK Rowling's novels.

But the 17-year-old is already well aware of the trappings of fame.

“Recently a woman took my arm, looked at me very seriously and said, 'You're quite pretty in real life.' I didn't quite know how to take it.”

Watson, who has earned an estimated £10 million from the five Potter films, says she shuns stylists for red-carpet events.

“Getting someone else to choose things takes the fun out of it,” she said.

When not working she splits her time between her mother's house in Oxford, and her father's in London.

Emma Watson also has a busy social life.

"For the last three weekends I've been at an 18th birthday party," she said.

Watson, who is currently juggling A-levels and driving lessons, will appear on BBC1 during the Christmas season in a new TV film, Ballet Shoes.

The teenager says she related to her character, Pauline Fossil, an orphan.

"She reminds me a lot of when I was younger," she said.

"I was such a drama queen."

When she got the part she said on her website: “I could not let such an amazing project go. I loved Pauline from the start.”

Set in Thirties London, Ballet Shoes is the story of Pauline and her two sisters, who are adopted by an eccentric explorer, played by Richard Griffiths.

Emma Watson took ballet lessons and dyed her hair whiteblonde for the film, which will be screened on 28 December.

Emma Watson was voted Britain's greatest female role model in a magazine poll earlier this year, ahead of Keira Knightley and Kate Moss.

She is due to start filming the sixth Potter film, Harry Potter And The Half-Blood Prince on 18 December.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

In Depth Profile and Interview with Emma Watson

Actress Emma Watson is profiled in a new article online from the Telegraph. This lengthy piece goes into much detail about her young life, her desire to become “a proper actress,” and her new project, the upcoming film “Ballet Shoes.” She first speaks of this new role and of its differences from her role as Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter films, as well as her own personal connections to this new character:

‘It’s the first time I’ve been anything but Hermione,’ she says, fiddling with the cushions. ‘Pauline is headstrong, so in that way she is quite like Hermione, but she is not academic. In fact, Emma Watson actually reminds me of myself as a child, much more than Hermione does. Pauline is utterly obsessed with being an actress and I was just like that when I was younger. I dreamt of it. I practised speeches in front of mirrors. Whenever there was a part at school, I went for it. I was probably a bit of a show-off in the sense that any chance to get up and be seen, I did it.’ She sounds like a nightmare. ‘I was such a drama queen,’ she says, blushing a bit. ‘I used to wail and moan and cry, and little things were blown up into being big things. I don’t know how my parents stood it, really.’ She says she isn’t like that at all now. ‘I’ve grown up a bit,’ she says. ‘I’ve had to.’

Acting, however, is not the only avenue Miss Watson is perusing. She goes on to detail her plans to apply at Cambridge to ‘read English and philosophy,’ by saying: “I feel it’s terribly important to continue with my education, in case acting doesn’t work out for me.” The interview goes on to discuss her life as a teenager and an actress, along with life she has lead being both. The topics of seeing her family, relationships, and fashion are also mentioned in this extended look at her career. The profile concludes with Emma’s thoughts on the world shown in “Ballet Shoes,” one which she feels ‘captivates everyone it touches.’ Asked about the relevance of this story, which looks at the aftermath of war, and whether this generation will be interested, she says:
‘Yes, I still think it’s relevant,’ she says enthusiastically. ‘Everyone loves that world, don’t they? The backstage world of what actually goes on during the rehearsals of a play or the making of a film. I thought it would be so glamorous, so exciting.’ And isn’t it? Emma Watson looks at me in surprise. ‘Yes,’ she says, eyes open wide, ‘of course.’

“Ballet Shoes” will be broadcast December 26 on BBC1 at 8:30pm.
Tag: Emma Watson