Ginnifer Goodwin talks “Something Borrowed” – EXCLUSIVE

By Sean O’Connell For one portion of moviegoers (the mostly male component), Kenneth Branagh’s “Thor” marks the start of 2011’s summer blockbuster season. But the other portion – and a sizeable portion, at that – says “Something Borrowed” ushers in the start of summer, as Hollywood finally starts making movies for women and couples seeking a date-night alternative to the muscle-bound, empty-headed event picture. (No offense, “Fast Five.” You’re actually kind of fun.)

Adapted from Emily Giffin’s bestselling novel, “Something Borrowed” sets up a complicated love triangle between mousy Rachel (Ginnifer Goodwin); her self-centered best friend, Darcy (Kate Hudson); and Darcy’s handsome fiancée, Dex (ColinEgglesfield). As the movie opens in theaters nationwide, Goodwin called to talk about blowing through the set ups, getting her “dance” on, and her support of the Memphis Grizzlies.

HollywoodNews: This has happened once or twice over the years, but it’s rare that I get to speak with an actor on the day their movie actually opens. What do you do today? How do you spend it?

Ginnifer Goodwin: Honestly? I’ve been up since 6 a.m. I’ve done four morning talk shows in a row. I’ve got a day of phone interviews. Then I’m going to go shopping, head back to JFK [airport], get on a plane and head back to L.A.

Have you ever gone to the theater on opening day to see how one of your films is playing with a crowd?

I do. And believe me, I’ll be getting reports from the people at the studio. I’ll be following the film’s progress, for sure.

One of the things I liked about the film is that your character, Rachel, kisses the man of her dreams, who also happens to be the forbidden fruit, before the opening credits are even finished.

That’s what I really liked about it, as well.

It allowed you to sink your teeth right into the meat of the problem at hand. Do you think these decisions freed you guys up to sort of get past the premise and start finding humor and pain in different scenarios?

Yes, because our conflict is established in our opening scene. And because the movie is based on an extremely successful book, I think that most of our audiences will be comprised of the fans of the book. And they certainly already know the plot. Rachel is sleeping with Dex from about the third page of the book. There isn’t much in the way of set up. You do get to learn more about these characters in flashbacks, but otherwise, it’s really about the conflict.

And I think I had the wrong conflict. This is hard for me to explain, but I had an easier time digesting your character’s relationship with Dex, even though he was engaged, then I did understanding her relationship with Kate Hudson’s character, Darcy. It was a little bit masochistic, the little abuses Rachel lets herself suffer just to be around Darcy. Talk to me about setting up a relationship where you kind of have to live underneath someone else’s thumb.

It honestly was a challenge for me, as well, to justify that friendship. But there is a lot that’s unspoken in the movie. We assume that Kate’s character, Darcy, has always made Rachel’s life more fun and has always taken care of Rachel in many ways. Though Rachel’s sense of self worth has been neglected by Darcy, Darcy has always been filled with an unconditional love for Rachel. And I think it’s more about Rachel’s sense of undeservingness that she does tolerate the toxicity of that relationship.

For those of us who might not be familiar with the books, while the diehards may come out to support the film, tell me where the story goes from here? Without spoiling too much, we see two characters with no real connection kind of connecting in the end credits. Is that a set up we should be paying attention to?

Ah, well, if enough people do go to see the film, there will be a sequel. And the story of the sequel is told through the eyes of Darcy. In that case, Rachel will be the antagonist. It absolutely will switch perspectives.

Interesting. So are there any subtle hints you slipped into this portrayal to hint at where your character may go in future films?

No, not at all. In fact, it was really important to me that we separate them. Everyone sees their lives so differently in the next story, and it was important to me not to, for instance, play Rachel the way that Darcy see her.

Ah, that makes sense. OK, something lighter. Rachel doesn’t get one dance scene. She gets two dance scenes. Was this so you could show the world your talents? Because you’ve got serious moves.

[Laughs] No, actually, I’m thrilled to hear that you appreciated those scenes. I was supposed to be getting my ass kicked in those scenes by Kate Hudson’s character. But I have to say that during the big dance off in the Hampton’s bar, the choreographer actually came up to me and said, “You look like you are trying to dance badly. Could you try a little harder to be good.” And I said, “Actually, I was doing my best.” [Laughs] Which was humiliating. He was embarrassed, and he kind of just slinked away. But we practiced really hard on our dances for weeks.

You are coming up on your 33rd birthday later this month. Did you, like Rachel, view 30 as this benchmark age where certain goals had to have been met?

I did. And I actually was able to collaborate on the writing of that scene … a big chunk of which was cut, which broke my heart. But I did have a bit of a meltdown on my 30th birthday because it is such a time for self-reflection and analysis. You start to think about where you want to be. You can blame a lot of your mistakes in your 20s on your youth. I did feel like the party was over, but I am enjoying my 30s more than my 20s.

And being that you are a proud Memphis native, I have to ask if you are following your Memphis Grizzlies as they battle the Oklahoma City Thunder in the NBA playoffs?

I have not been watching them on television, but I have been asking for constant updates because I am a fan of anything that comes out of Memphis!

“Something Borrowed,” starring Ginnifer Goodwin, is in theaters now.

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