INTERVIEW: Kate Hudson

From Ultimate DVD #21

Kate Hudson:
Most Famous

Ultimate DVD talks to the Oscar-nominated actress about finding her fame...

Kate Hudson looking beautiful as ever...

Buy the Region 2 DVD @ BlackStar and get a 10% pre-order discount!

Almost Famous: Region 2 DVD released September 10 by Columbia Tristar. To be reviewed in the next issue, Ultimate DVD #22

Absolutely no almost about it; Kate Hudson is famous. Just 22 years old, the daughter of Goldie Hawn has been working in the movie business for three years, first gaining notice for her portrayal of a virgin in 200 Cigarettes. While her second film Gossip brought Hudson to a wider audience, it was Almost Famous that catapulted her into the public consciousness, as the film made an impression at the 2001 Oscars, while she took home the Best Supporting Actress at the Golden Globes.

Patrick Fugit and Kate Hudson as William and PennyEnthused by Hudson's "sexiness, charm, great confidence and even greater vulnerability", writer/director Cameron Crowe chose her to portray the devoted groupie (or, as she would have it, "band aid") Penny Lane in his semi-biographical film. As a 15-year-old, Crowe had joined the staff of Rolling Stone as a journalist, covering some of the most influential bands of the era. In Almost Famous, he presents young William Miller (Patrick Fugit), a kid who lands an assignment with the paper, covering the tour of the up-and-coming group Stillwater. It's a sweet, captivating rites of passage drama, made all the more poignant by the fact that most of the characters in the film are based on real people.

Asked to define the character she plays, Hudson says, "There's an innocence to Penny, even though she's seen and done a lot. I think she does have a sense that she's got something special, that she can make it a party just by walking into a room. But then there's the part of her that is trying to latch onto something that really isn't there for her. The problem is that Penny found her home and her family in the music world. Her downfall comes when it's not about the music anymore."

Band-Aid Application

Besotted by Stillwater's lead guitarist Russell Hammond (Billy Crudup), Penny embarks on a self-destructive affair, while at the same time becoming the focus of the affections of young William.

"The movie is not about a rock and roll band; that's the backdrop. The movie is a love triangle, so the message is that at the end of the day, what do you have? And that's the relationships with the people you love. Cameron is so amazing with love stories, and so real with them - the moments that people share together Cameron is so amazing at picking up."

Crowe certainly prepared his actors for the production, allowing a month of rehearsal before shooting commenced, with the Stillwater actors attending 'Rock School', where they were given tuition by 1970s icon Peter Frampton. Hudson believes this unusually long preparation created a positive bonding experience for the cast and crew, while the chance to meet the real-life equivalents to the on-screen characters presented an interesting perspective...

Brian Alexander

Feature © Visual Imagination Ltd 2101
Images © Dreamworks Not for reproduction

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