Naomi Ellen Watts is an English actress and film producer. She made her screen debut in the Australian drama film For Love Alone and then appeared in the Australian television series Hey Dad..!, Brides of Christ and Home and Away and alongside Nicole Kidman and Thandie Newton in the coming-of-age comedy-drama film Flirting.
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I’m Naomi Watts and I star alongside Jaeden Lieberher, Jacob Tremblay and Maddie Ziegler in the upcoming Colin Trevorrow directed thriller “The Book of Henry,” in theaters tomorrow.
Ask me Anything!
Watch the trailer for The Book of
Thank you so much guys for spending time with me. I had fun with you guys and I really hope you see The Book of Henry this weekend.
What's it like working with David Lynch? You're awesome in the new Twin Peaks!
Aww Thank you! Working with David Lynch is always such a treat. Just to be in his proximity. He is one of my mentors and it is just a fantastic person to be in the company of. His ideas are just purely unique. I just love his mind.
What's it like to have the best cheeks in Hollywood?
I didn't know I had the best cheeks in Hollywood but thank you!
This needs an answer, Naomi.
I don't say Noon-Thirty. I say 12:30.
Hi Naomi! I can't believe Tank Girl came out more than 20 years ago! What's your favourite memory of making the movie?
That's shocking to me as well! My favorite memory is that I couldn't believe I got that part. They made me audition 9 Times! I wasn't even sure it was going to happen. And just getting that call saying yes, they are casting you.
Arianne Phillips the costume designer was so creative and inventive. We had such a great time doing all of the costumes together!
What's your favorite genre of film to act in?
It's no secret that I am familiar to the horror & psychological thriller genres. I love a good drama and a good comedy as well. It is not as easy to find. I am also not the go to girl for a comedy.
How is Ophelia coming along?
I just got out of my wig and we had quite a major battle scene. I still am sweating from the high temperatures here in Prague. It's going pretty well. Thank you!
Were you a fan of Twin Peaks before you were cast in the new season?
I was, yes. It is definitely a great thing to be a part of... given how much it changed TV. Just to be in the presence of David Lynch everyday for a few weeks made me very happy.
After Funny Games U.S. , do. you still let neighbors into your house to borrow certain ingredients?
Haha! Not unless I know them! I think I would feel a little afraid.
Naomi, my best friend is probably your biggest fan but he's at work and can't ask you questions. Could you give a shoutout to Gunnar?
Have a great day at work Gunnar! Sorry I missed you!!
Whats the best thing a director can do for you on set?
Just be clear. It's the most important thing from a director. It helps to understand their vision. It's really fun when you know what they're really looking for.
Hi Naomi. Would you rather fight one horse sized chocolate bunny or one hundred chocolate bunny sized horses?
One hundred chocolate bunny sized horses!
What's your favorite film you've been in? Favorite film in general?
I never say that. It's not fair to give shout-outs but Mulholland Drive was kind of an amazing experience and a break-out for me. 21 Grams was also fantastic and getting to work with Alejandro, Sean and Benicio. I consider myself very lucky to work with great directors in the last couple of decades.
How did you become friends with Nicole Kidman?
We lived in the same area and we had friends in common. The way our flourished was when we worked on a film called "Flirting."
What was it like working on The Book of Henry's small set compared to lets say...Ahem, King Kong? :~P
It was great working on an intimate production but there were a whole lot of things that made it feel like a full scale production. For instance, Colin's way of shooting like camera moves. The intimacy of this kind of show vs. King Kong is quite different. King Kong is hundreds and hundreds of people on set everyday.
What do you look for when deciding what projects to join?
Firstly the director. It's the thing that will pull me in. Then there are many factors - the story is incredibly important, the character. I don't mind playing small parts but there needs to be an arch you can gravitate too and which actors you're playing against. And now being a mom of two boys, I have to consider all the other logistics.
Do you ever get mistaken for Naomi Campbell?? I googled your name before trying to think of a question and it took me a second to figure out why you weren't black.
I have had people introduce me as Naomi Campbell. People get our names mixed up! Sometimes people say to me, "You look like that actress Naomi Watts!"
Naomi, youre my most favorite actress. I have to ask about my all time favorite film, Mulholland Drive.
I was wondering if it was difficult to film, or confusing at all during the process? You deserved an oscar for that performance.
Thank you so much! It wasn't confusing because David always made you feel safe even if there's no answers to the questions that come up. You trust him! He's so gentle and joyful and you just let yourself go there even though sometimes things feel like a complete mystery but it doesn't really matter.
What's on the shirt you're wearing in your Instagram post from today?
It is a really old shirt. I think it was from a company called Twenty8Twelve!
What's it like doing a big budget studio picture as opposed to an independent film? Do you prefer one over the other?
No not really. They're different. An independent film feels very collaborative and you're dealing with issues as they arise. I like the collaborative feeling that you have in an intimate film set.
How did as story as dark as The Book of Henry come to be made? It seems like a ...difficult thing to do, nowadays. :~)
I thought it was a fantastic story about this family. It had a whole lot of heart. But at the same time it was straddling different genres which made it very original.
What's it like working as a producer on a project you're starring in?
It's good. It just means that you have more of a voice in the whole production. Generally speaking you have as an actor if the director is open to it. And these days they are. But when you're coming in as a producer, you have a say in casting and the vision. You just have a stronger voice.
What was the hardest acting gig you have ever had (film or otherwise) and why?
Also, what one was the most fun?
Certainly King Kong was physically demanding and so was The Impossible. In King Kong, I spent many months getting beaten up by men in green suits, pretending to be attacked by a giant beast. The Impossible was as well because it was not just the physical side of things with being in the water but also the emotional aspects of that was incredibly draining too. Shooting in Thailand was incredible but hearing from the people who experience that was very emotional.
The Impossible is one of my favourite films, and you and Ewan were incredible in it. Do you have any favourite tidbits or memories from the shoot you can share?
The discovery of Tom Holland... Spiderman! I knew he would go on to be an incredible thing. Just a wonderful talent. At 14 years old... he had a really special gift and it doesn't surprise me how successful he has been.
How was it like working with Jacob Tremblay twice?
He is a dreamboat! He is so talented and obviously everyone sees him for all of his cuteness. But he is incredibly focused and motivated at the same time. He is so wonderful to watch up close. I've been blown away both times.
What was it like working with Colin Trevorrow?
Colin is amazing!! He is very clear about what he wants. I really trusted him going in because the way he spoke about the material. He really was wonderful to be around.
You are one of my favorite actresses, but your career was more of a steady climb than an instant breakthrough. How has that experience impacted you as a person and as an actress?
I think things definitely change. It's definitely been years and years of trying out and being told no, you're not funny, not intense, you're too young or too old. It's been hard dealing with constant rejection but I knew this is what I've always wanted to do and I built a thicker skin in that process. I never take anything for granted. I appreciate everything that's happened. I'm happy enough as an actor for hire and then I got casted in a David Lynch movie.
Any chance of an Eastern Promises sequel? What was it like working with Mr. Cronenberg?
I don't think I'm hearing anything about a sequel. I would love that. I love David and I love Viggo. David is a fantastic director and it was a great experience.
Have you watched any of Maddies dances? if so, what are your favorite solos?
Yes! The Sia video. My son is actually very into Sia. We've watched that video a few times and we thought she was incredibly expressive and can tell stories without words...just with movements. She's also the sweetest girl on the planet. At the time we were filming, I told her that my son was taking tap lessons and he kind of wanted to quit and she was kind enough to send a video telling him not to quit.
Hi Naomi, I love your work! How was it working with the three kids on the set of The Book of Henry?
The three kids were amazing! They each had such a special talent and thankfully I had the opportunity to work with Jaeden and Jacob before. So it was great creating that family vibe with them especially when we don't have much rehearsal time. They're great kids. Maddie is such an extraordinary actor. We already knew what an incredible dancer she is.
Hey, Naomi! What was the best part about filming King Kong?
Peter Jackson's universe! He's incredible. The love story between Kong & Ann is just wonderful. I'm a sucker for that kind of thing. It was fantastic for so many reasons.
Since you worked with kids on The Book of Henry were there things you learned from them?
You learn so much from these kids. They are so impressive. Their ability to concentrate and tell the truth from a really raw place. It blows me away how they can stand the hours and deliver over and over again.
Does fame make it hard to have real conversations with your average Joe?
Is there a different social dynamic in celebrity circles than you remember from before you became famous?
It depends case by case I would say. I can't say yes that would be far too general. I've had some wonderful conversations with people in supermarkets, etc.
What is your favorite dessert?
Pavlova! Bill Granger's restaurants have the best ones!
How have the roles you've been offered changed over the years? Do you feel like with each age "group" your opportunities expand/change or do they become limited?
As you grow up and as you get older, you experience more things and the roles usually reflects that. I feel lucky that I'm still getting asked to work with great people and tell great stories. It's fun to be at this age and playing women that have gone through intense experiences.
Dear Naomi: What drew you to the project the most? Story, Director, Co-Cast...?
Greetings from Switzerland
It started with Colin but the script as well. But when I found out he got both Jaeden and Jacob, I was like what a great group to be a part of.
What's the most starstruck you've ever been?
Meeting the Clintons! When I meet comedians or musicians I typically get quite starstruck!
Hi Naomi, great fan here, love your character in Birdman and Twin Peaks now.
What was your favourite scene of the first two seasons of Twin Peaks?
I'm not allowed to say too much. I haven't seen the whole show yet and I don't know what's played.
Is there a dark side to the moon?
Yea, there is a dark side.
Hello dear Naomi. How did you achieve the discipline required to do some of the most extenuating films in history?
Drama school, the good work ethic that I was trained in in Australia. I take it seriously... but I also know how to have fun. You want these stories to mean something to people. So you put your blood, sweat and tears into it.
Not filming related but why aren't you on Twitter? I'm just curious. Lots of love from Spain!! xx
I just never got into Twitter. I never got into Facebook either. I just did Instagram because I like the photographs and sharing photos with friends.
Did you have any advice for the young cast of this film?
Keep doing what you're doing cuz you do it really well! And don't grow up too fast!
do you know if maddies dance scene was in the script before she was casted? or was it added because you just can't miss the opportunity to let her dance?
I'm not sure really about that. I can't remember when Maddie was casted in the process but I know Colin always wanted that character to dance but I don't know when that decision was ultimately made.
Saw you on the cover of Parade Magazine this week. Did you enjoy that photo shoot?
Yes, it was great! Thank you!
Hello Naomi, thanks for this AMA. Did you watch Skull Island?
I haven't yet! I am dying to watch it. I am obviously a big fan of Brie! I haven't gotten to see it yet.
Naomi, why is it some many great actors (yourself included) come out of Australia?
I don't know the answer to that question. They take their work really seriously and there's great drama schools but it's been really great to see all this great Australian talent and directors.
What can we expect from this new film in terms of acting? Did it take you a lot of emotional effort to shoot the scenes? Lots of love from Spain! xx
Yes, it was. It is a very emotional movie. When you are dealing with things like children suffering. It is a very scary and heartbreaking thing to do. Watching children go through grief is hard too.
Who is your favourite Beatle?
Too hard to say.
Has anyone you have ever worked with have bad breath? And if so, who do you react?
I'm sure it has happened before. I would just offer them a mint.
Hi Naomi! When will the shooting of The Secret Life of the Lonely Doll begin? I can't wait! I love you more than anything. :)
I am not sure yet! But I think pretty soon there will be a script available.