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February 18, 2022   •  Category: "The Morning Show", Career, Hello Sunshine, News & Gossip0 Comments

Reese Witherspoon on Acting: ‘My Performances Have Been Based on My Friends, and I’ve Never Told Them’

From Tracy Flick to Elle Woods to Madeline Martha Mackenzie, few actors have as many household names in their body of work as Reese Witherspoon. How has her acting process helped her create so many iconic roles? “It’s almost like being an anthropologist,” she says. “You are studying contemporary behavior and how people interact and then applying it to character.”

Take “Legally Blonde,” her instant-classic comedy about a sorority sister–turned–Harvard lawyer. “There’s a reason that it has stood the test of time,” Witherspoon says of the 2001 film. Remembering how she constructed Elle Woods, she says she spent time at a real-world sorority house to watch how the members behaved. She also went to a fancy Beverly Hills department store to watch customers try on shoes. All that analysis then went back into the performance.

Witherspoon’s techniques for each role vary wildly, thanks to an early start as a teen actor and a lack of formal training. As she puts it, “It’s hard for me to describe [my process], because I’ve kind of taped it together with duct tape!” After being bit by the acting bug early on in Tennessee, she began taking adult acting classes, appearing in commercials, and performing odd jobs in film production. She dropped out of school to pursue a screen career and broke out in “The Man in the Moon,” following it up with “Cruel Intentions” and “Election.” Eventually, she became a movie star; her performance as June Carter Cash in “Walk the Line” earned her a SAG Award, a BAFTA, and an Oscar.

“The way I prepare for everything is deeply personal for me,” she says, “so sometimes I have a hard time explaining to directors what I do. But it’s a deep, deep understanding of where the character comes from, what their upbringing was, who loved them, who didn’t love them. How do they walk through the world? Do they diminish themselves? Do they take up space? And so much of it comes from knowing people and watching people.

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Golden Globe-winning actress Reese Witherspoon sat down to talk to HFPA journalist Margaret Gardiner about her decades in Hollywood, from her start in films like Cruel Intentions, Election, and Legally Blonde, to turning points in her career like Wild and Walk the Line, to her recent forays in television with The Morning Show and Big Little Lies, to her outside work like her use of fashion and her ongoing monthly book club that highlights and celebrates great and noteworthy works, and more.



Advertising and marketing company AdWeek have honoured Reese in their 2020 Hot List and she is on the cover of their October 26th 2020 magazine cover to mark this! The magazine used additional photos from the Emmy magazine photoshoot that was published earlier in the year, and features a new interview in which Reese talked about growing her business and working to be taken seriously as a producer. Read the article below, and find the scans in our Gallery. Congratulations to Reese on being recognised for her fantastic work again!

The 2020 Hot List: Honoring the Year’s Best in TV, Publishing, Digital and Brands
When the pandemic forced us all to begin sheltering in place in March, we leaned on TV, publishing and digital brands more than ever before to connect us with the outside world. So it’s no surprise that Adweek’s annual Hot List, which always honors the best in those three categories, is full of people and brands who were at their best when so many things seemed at their worst.

Take Adweek’s Media Visionary Reese Witherspoon, who has turned Hollywood on its head by creating a successful media company, Hello Sunshine, focused on female-centric stories—for a variety of platforms.

Our TV Creator of the Year, Jon Favreau, helped get Disney+ off to a hot start with The Mandalorian, while TV Executive of the Year, TLC president Howard Lee, showed that linear networks still have plenty of fight in them.

Digital Creator of the Year Sarah Cooper turned her popular President Trump lip-syncs on TikTok and Twitter into a Netflix comedy special, and Digital Executive of the Year, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, is helping lead the charge against lies and hate speech on social media.

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Reese took time out of her holiday in the Caribbean to chat to fans on Facebook live yesterday. She and co-star Laura Dern also did an interview on Instagram. They revealed that they are considering a second season of Big Little Lies


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Current Projects
Big Little Lies (2019)
Seasons 1 & 2 available now on HBO
Role: Madeline
Genre: HBO TV Series - Drama
News / Info / Photos / Official Site


The Morning Show (2019)
Seasons 1 & 2 available now on AppleTV+
Role: Bradley Jackson
Genre: Apple TV+ Series - Drama
News / Info / Photos / Official Site



Little Fires Everywhere (2020)
Season 1 available now on Hulu/Prime Video
Role: Elena Richardson
Genre: Hulu TV Series - Drama
News / Info / Photos / Official Site



Sing 2 (2021)
Available to purchase now
Role: Rosita
Genre: Animation, comedy, musical
News / Info / Photos / Official Site



Legally Blonde 3 (2022)
In production
Role: Elle Woods
Genre: Comedy
News / Info / Photos / Official Site


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