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Rooney Mara Talks with Steven Soderbergh in Interview Magazine -- the "Finch," Loving the Oscar, Nudity and More

Photo of Beth Hanna By Beth Hanna | Thompson on Hollywood February 22, 2013 at 2:22PM

Rooney Mara submitted to an email chat with her "Side Effects" director Steven Soderbergh for this month's Interview Magazine. The two smartypants engage in sarcastic banter about David Fincher, the Oscars and, er, the "reverse cowgirl."
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Rooney Mara
Rooney Mara

Rooney Mara submitted to an email chat with her "Side Effects" director Steven Soderbergh for this month's Interview Magazine. The two smartypants engage in sarcastic banter about David Fincher, the Oscars and, er, the "reverse cowgirl."

Excerpts below, plus gorgeous black-and-white pictures from the mag's photo shoot.

Soderbergh: Why did [Fincher] have to do so many takes on all your scenes [in "Girl with the Dragon Tattoo"]?

Mara: Har, har . . . Because I am such a pleasure to be around, Fincher would prolong my scenes so that I would be on set all of the time. And maybe because I am stubborn, I thought that I could out-stubborn him. But you can’t out-stubborn a Finch. He was always right, though. Not everyone can make films with “less than one take,” like you.

Soderbergh: So why didn't you win the Oscar?

Mara: Lots of reasons . . . I know how much you love your Oscar. My dog’s name is Oskar.

Soderbergh: Why are you naked in every movie?

Mara: I just do what I’m told, when I’m told. There is a line, though—like when you asked me to do reverse cowgirl with Channing [Tatum, who plays Mara’s husband in "Side Effects"], and I put my foot down. If the character should be nude in the scene and it makes sense and I trust the person making the film—and I regret my decision to trust you now that I know you more—then I don’t see a problem with it. I certainly don’t want to be involved in anything that is gratuitous, but I don’t think the human body is something to be ashamed of. Every other person on the planet has the same parts as I do. So seeing them shouldn’t be a huge shock to most people.

Soderbergh:  So why don’t you eat normal food?

Mara: By “normal,” do you mean food that has been genetically modified? I try to eat food that hasn’t been washed in ammonia and then packaged in the shape of breaded dinosaurs filled with cheese—even though those are very tasty. I like to eat food that can actually make it through the 20-plus feet of my small intestine.

Rooney Mara interview mag pic 1
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This article is related to: Interviews, Rooney Mara, Steven Soderbergh, Steven Soderbergh, David Fincher, Interviews , David Fincher


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Thompson on Hollywood

Born and raised in Manhattan, Anne Thompson grew up going to the Thalia and The New Yorker and wound up at grad Cinema Studies at NYU. She worked at United Artists and Film Comment before heading west as that magazine's west coast editor. She wrote for the LA Weekly, Sight and Sound, Empire, The New York Times and Entertainment Weekly before serving as West Coast Editor of Premiere. She wrote for The Washington Post, The London Observer, Wired, More, and Vanity Fair, and did staff stints at The Hollywood Reporter and Variety. She eventually took her blog Thompson on Hollywood to Indiewire. She taught film criticism at USC Critical Studies, and continues to host the fall semester of “Sneak Previews” for UCLA Extension.