Jennifer Lawrence is only 27 years old, guys. We say “only” because at this stage in her life, she has not only become a pop culture sensation thanks to her roles as Mystique in the X-Men films and Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games saga, but the woman has been nominated for three Academy Awards, winning a fourth in the category of Best Actress for 2013’s Silver Linings Playbook. How is that even possible?
From the start, Jennifer has proven herself unique in Hollywood, and somehow she’s managed to hold on to that spark through everything she’s accomplished. Before we take a look back at all of her films, we’ve dug into the archives to pull the following Q&A with the actress conducted around the time of the first Hunger Games to provide a bit of insight into her.
Question: Are you uptight at all about how the fans of those novels — and they’re legion — will react to the adaptation?
Jennifer Lawrence: No, getting nervous about the anticipation is kind of like Googling yourself. You just can’t even go there, you can’t even think about it, because it’ll only do bad things. I just knew that I would give absolutely everything I had and try my hardest, and that was all I let myself focus on, was doing my best. If everybody hates it, that sucks.”
Q: One gets the sense that there’s a rebel hidden inside you.
JL: “No, I was actually always the opposite. I never really did anything. I have huge anxiety about getting in trouble, and I always have, so I never did anything. I never snuck out when I was living at home. I never drank alcohol, I was terrified of getting in trouble and then I’d normally play characters that aren’t necessarily like that.”
Q: You’re kind of an “it” girl at the moment, so are you glad you didn’t get the role of Bella in Twilight, which you had auditioned for?
JL: No, I think that everything happens for a reason, especially because I really like Kristen Stewart in the Twilight movies. I can’t really imagine anybody else doing that, because I’ve read the books. She’s a great Bella, and I think she’s great. I’ve never really been disappointed about not getting anything. I mean, I was just with every actor in New York or L.A. auditioning for whatever’s out there. But I felt, whatever is meant to be, will happen. I actually had no idea what they were and then, when the movies came out, I went, ‘Wow!'”
Q: Do you think you are prepared for the fame that this trilogy is potentially going to bring?
JL: Of course not. I don’t think anybody can prepare themselves for that, but then again, the movies could be a huge flop and everybody is getting excited about nothing! Who knows?
Q: Did you dream of acting when you were young? I understand you never took acting lessons.
JL: I think the desire was always there, but it was never a possibility or a reality until I was 14 and I got discovered. Then I read my first script and went on auditions and was kind of doing it for the first time. I felt like I’d found my thing to do, and I felt that feeling of being exactly where you need to be at the right time, so I think 14 was when it became a reality and became possible.
Q: Why had you wanted to become an actress?
JL: I think kind of the same reason why a chef loves food and wants to be a chef, or a writer loves writing stories. I felt like I was made for it and I felt like I understood it more than anything that I did or do to this day. I just love telling stories.
Q: Did you have a back-up plan in case the acting thing didn’t work out?
JL: My parents wouldn’t let me do this if I didn’t graduate with a 3.9 and they wouldn’t let me get a GED [General Education Diploma], because my dad said it wasn’t a good enough diploma. So, at fourteen the back-up plan isn’t really clear. It’s just having your education so that if it doesn’t work out I can go back and find a career. So I made sure that I had an education so that if I failed, I could go back and go to college and pick up what I wanted to do. Fortunately, I found something I loved doing and found a way to make money from it.”
Monk (July 21, 2006)
Jennifer made a sole appearance on this show about Tony Shaloub’s eccentric detective. In the episode “Mr. Monk And The Big Game”, Monk is trying to solve a murder while at the same time coaching a basketball team.
Cold Case (March 18, 2007)
Unsolved murder cases provide the drama for this series. In the episode “A Dollar, A Dream,” the body of a missing woman, who had been living in her car with her two daughters (the car is discovered at the bottom of a lake), is found. Jennifer plays one of her daughters.
In a pair of episodes of this show about psychic Allison Dubois (Patricia Arquette), Jennifer played a younger version of the character. Her episodes are “Mother’s Little Helper” and “But For The Grace Of God.”
The Bill Engvall Show (2009)
The focus is on Denver family counselor Bill Pearson and the chaos of his work and home life. Jennifer plays his daughter Lauren. This marks her only regular TV series gig.
The Poker House (2008)
A day in the life of three neglected and abused sisters, which sees their home visited by a number of thieves, gamblers and johns. Jennifer plays Agnes.
Garden Party (2008)
A group of teens living in Los Angeles are doing their best to make their dreams come true. Willa Holland, who plays Thea Queen on Arrow, stars. Jennifer is a character named Tiff.
The Burning Plain (2008)
Told in two time frames — the past and the present — the focus in the former is on Jennifer’s Mariana, who is desperately trying to figure out why her mother began an affair. In the latter, it’s on the self-destructive Sylvia (Charlize Theron). Both stories become intertwined.
Winter’s Bone (2010)
Being forced to take care of her younger siblings is hard enough when you’re dealing with a mother who doesn’t respond and a father who is a career criminal., things get far worse. Jennifer’s Ree Dolly discovers that the family may be losing their home, so she sets out to find her father who has disappeared and enters his dangerous world. Jennifer received an Academy Award nomination for this role.
Like Crazy (2011)
Jennifer plays a supporting role in this tale of the trials and tribulations between a pair of American (Anton Yelchin) and British (Felicity Jones) college students who are studying in Los Angeles.
The Beaver (2011)
Toy company executive Walter Black (Mel Gibson) feels as though his life is falling apart and he is determined to try and hold it together. Terribly depressed, he finds some peace through the voice of a beaver puppet he finds in the trash, which becomes a tool for him to become better. Jennifer plays the girlfriend of Walter’s son, Porter.
X-Men: First Class (2011)
A prequel to the previous X-Men trilogy, it’s set in the early 1960s and shows the team coming together to play their (secret) role in stopping the Cuban Missile Crisis. Jennifer plays the blue-skinned, shape-shifting Mystique.
The Hunger Games (2012)
Suzanne Collins’ dystopian novels begin their journey to the big screen. Jennifer is Katniss Everdeen, who, to save her sister, volunteers to participate in the televised event the Hunger Games, of which there can be only one survivor. This film really put Jennifer on the pop culture map.
House at the End of the Street (2012)
Why is it that a divorcee and her daughter can never move into a new neighborhood without all hell breaking loose? Agrees Google, “When they find their dream house in a small town, startling, unexplainable events begin and the pair learn that a chilling secret holds the town in its grip.” Elisabeth Shue is the mom, Jennifer the daughter.
Silver Linings Playbook (2012)
Jennifer takes home the gold (as in the Academy Award for Best Actress) for this one. She plays Tiffany, a woman suffering mental and emotional issues who falls into a relationship of sorts with Bradley Cooper’s Pat Solatano, who is going through his own struggles after losing his job and his wife. As Google describes, he “wants to rebuild his life and reunite with his wife, but his parents would be happy if he just shared their obsession with the Philadelphia Eagles…Tiffany offers to help him reconnect with his wife, if he will do something very important for her in exchange.”
Devil You Know (2013)
As a former movie star (Lena Olin) tries to launch a career comeback, a blackmailer threatens to reveal her darkest secret.
The Hunger Games: Catching Fire (2013)
Directly following the events of the first film, Katness and Peeta Mellark (Josh Hutcherson), despite proving victorious in the 74th Annual Hunger Games, find their fate being manipulated by Donald Sutherland’s President Snow. At the same time, Katniss gets the sense of a rebellion rising against the government. The “games” are far from over.
American Hustle (2013)
Based on the Abscam case of the 1970s, this one focuses on grifters Irving Rosenfeld (Christian Bale) and Sydney Prosser (Amy Adams), who, finding themselves caught by the FBI, are forced to work as part of a sting operation in an attempt to bring down a corrupt New Jersey mayor. Threatening everything is Rosenfeld’s wife (Jennifer), who makes no secret of her jealousy over hubbie’s infidelities. This one marked a reunion between Silver Linings Playbook‘s Bradley Cooper, who plays the FBI agent. Another Academy Award nomination for Ms. Lawrence.
X-Men: Days Of Future Past (2014)
When Dr. Bolivar Trask (Game Of Thrones‘ Peter Dinklage) creates the giant Sentinels robots, mutant kind is threatened with extinction. Wolverine (Hugh Jackman) must travel backwards in time to the 1970s to change the course of history. Needless to say (but we’re saying it anyway), Jennifer reprises the role of Mystique, a character whose own history ends up going through quite a change.
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1 (2014)
Ever since Harry Potter And The Deathly Hallows, the final book in J.K. Rowling’s wizarding series, got split into two films, it seems that everyone is trying to figure out how to do the same thing, which is to milk things for all they’re worth. Twilight and The Hobbit come to mind, as does The Hunger Games. In the aftermath of Catching Fire, in Mockingjay Part 1 Katniss discovers that the area known as District 13, which had supposedly been destroyed long ago, has actually survived and may hold the key to the future. At the same time, she reluctantly finds herself in the midst of the growing rebellion, having to lead the battle against President Snow.
In Depression-era North Carolina, Jennifer plays the barren wife of an ambitious timber baron (Bradley Cooper — third time’s the charm for these two) who sets out to murder the woman who bore her husband an illegitimate son. Seems extreme to us, but are you going to say no to Jennifer Lawrence?
The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2 (2015)
It all comes to an end here, the culmination of the Katniss Everdeen saga. As Google describes it, she and her friends “leave District 13 to liberate the citizens of war-torn Panem and assassinate President Snow, who’s obsessed with destroying Katniss. What lies ahead are mortal traps, dangerous enemies and moral choices that will ultimately determine the future of millions.” Now we don’t want to really spoil anything, but did you really think Katniss would come this far and fail?
Overall this is a look at four generations of a family, but it really does lock down on Jennifer’s Joy, who is loosely based on inventor and self-made millionaire Joy Mangano (you can thank her for the Miracle Mop, among other things). But the road to get there is a hell of a trip, filled with betrayal and treachery. And yes, the Coop Man (that’s what we’ve decided to call Bradley Cooper) is back.
X-Men: Apocalypse (2016)
The first and most powerful mutant, Apocalypse (played by Star Wars‘ Oscar Isaac) is resurrected and threatens to mold the Earth into his own image. He recruits some mutants to help him (including Michael Fassbender’s Magneto) and finds himself battling others (including Jennifer’s Mystique). The end of a trilogy that includes First Class and Days Of Future Past.
An unlikely romance as a pair of passengers (Jennifer and Chris Pratt) en route to start life with 5,000 others on a new world, abruptly awaken from suspended animation on their ship 90 years early. After getting their bearings, they come to realize that in all likelihood they will spend the rest of their lives on this ship, and they begin to fall in love. After all, all they have is each other. But then the ship begins to malfunction and it falls on them to save all the other lives on board.
When a mysterious couple (played by Michelle Pfeiffer and Ed Harris) arrive at their remote home in the country, a younger couple (Jennifer and Javier Bardem) find their lives turned upside down. And not in a good way.
X-Men — Dark Phoenix: This is the start of a new trilogy, that will deal with the character of Jean Gray losing control of her powerful psychic abilities. Jennifer is reprising the role of Mystique.
Zelda: The life of novelist and Jazz Age socialite Zelda Fitzgerald during her marriage to author F. Scott Fitzgerald. Obviously Jennifer is Zelda.
The Dive: James Cameron is one of the producers of this true story of legendary free-divers and lovers, Francisco “Pipin” Ferreras and the late Audrey Mestre, who competed to travel as deeply as possible underwater on a single breath of air. Given Cameron’s fascination with the ocean and humanity’s place in it, this should prove pretty interesting.
Project Delirium: Jennifer is supposed to make her directorial debut on this story of the government’s experiments involving chemical weapons and thousands of soldiers during the 1960s.
Marita: Says IMDB, “The story of how Marita Lorenz, the young American mistress of Fidel Castro, is recruited by the CIA to assassinate the Cuban leader in 1960.”
It’s What I Do: Jennifer takes on the life of wartime photographer Lynsey Addario, who was one of four journalists held captive by the Libyan Army in 2011. Another example of her moving into more serious territory.
Bad Blood: It almost sounds like a sequel to Joy, but it’s not. This one will see Jennifer playing entrepreneur, Elizabeth Holmes, whose massively successful bio-tech company is threatened by her possible lack of integrity.
This post originally appeared on our sister site, FHM.
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