It was only a year ago that Mila Kunis made headlines for guiding a nervous young BBC reporter through an interview about her role in Oz the Great and Powerful. “You’re doing fantastic. How are you feeling?” she asked after he admitted to being petrified and asked Kunis how he was doing. “I hope you get a whole round of [drinks].” They talked about bars, his friend Sir Daucer and going out, all of which Kunis said were “way more fun for [her]” to discuss than the movie she was promoting. The interview showed how personable and down-to-earth the actress can be, but like everyone else, she’s not always in the cheeriest of moods for work-related commitments.
Last week, the Star-Ledger published an interview with Kunis where she seemed grumpy and short. Writer Stephen Whitty himself opens the article on a negative note, “The interview starts going south from the first question, when I make the mistake of asking Mila Kunis how she’s feeling. She does not take this well. Now, in most interviews, this question would normally just be a polite bit of throat-clearing. But here there’s a bit of genuine added concern on my part as she is pregnant.”
Kunis explained she “does not talk about that for publication,” —“that” referring to her pregnancy— and Whitty decided this firm response stemmed from a recent Marie Claire interview which featured some very personal details on her pregnancy and upcoming delivery (the words “shredded” and “vag” were used). There are lots of reasons she might have put her foot down and chosen to leave her future child out of interviews, and Kunis has been in the business long enough to not get hung up on every potentially scandalous story written about her.
When Witty inquired about Kunis’s early years in the Ukraine, she pointed out that she’s talked about her upbringing on countless occasions and that mentioning it again would be old news, “I’ve talked about me moving to America in a hundred interviews. It’s the most mundane subject possible, it’s like everyone’s immigrant story. It was much harder for my 13-year-old brother, it was much harder for my parents.”
It might not be boring to a reporter who doesn’t know Kunis personally, but if you happen to land an interview with the actress, it’s probably not a bad idea to do some homework or at least Google previous interviews she’s done to avoid addressing the same themes she’s touched on many, many times before.
Kunis said a few more things Witty didn’t think were very polite, and at the end of the piece, he once again tried to figure out what prompted her clipped answers. He wrote: “I get anywhere from half-an-hour to an hour with a person, usually in a featureless hotel room, sometimes over the phone, and out of that, two strangers with somewhat opposite aims try to construct a conversation. So maybe that’s at play here. Or maybe Kunis is ticked off at all reporters in general, after seeing that Gawker post. Hell, maybe she just picked up the phone after an awful bout of morning sickness (not that I’d risk offending her by asking).”
So if a woman is viewed as unfriendly, it just has to be hormonal? That’s like arguing females only act volatile or morose when they’re menstruating! Pregnancy (we’ve heard) takes a lot out of a person, but we all have bad days (or unpleasant conversations) when we’re not expecting a child. I’ve never been pregnant but I definitely get grouchy from time to time.
Besides, Kunis didn’t seem to think the conversation was such a bad one. When Whitty apologized for upsetting her, she said, “No, no, it was a good interview!” For all we know, she might have been surprised by the news that she was “brusque” and “awkward” during the interview.
People misunderstand each other constantly, and that might have been the situation between Kunis and Whitty. Either way, she wasn’t wrong to want to keep her baby out of a work-related interview, and it’s not OK to assume surliness on her part has to be about her pregnancy. She doesn’t have to be BFFs with all the reporters she meets. Let’s not hold her to that impossible, silly standard.
Featured image via.