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Speaking to Josh Horowitz for a conversation at 92NY on Tuesday, Blunt explained that being referred to as an Academy Award nominee doesn’t yet feel natural, despite the months-long buzz she would receive Oscar recognition.
“It’s all quite scary, the anticipation of it, and I think you just try not to listen to buzz because buzz can be built on sand sometimes. And so when it did happen, and when it happened in such a far-reaching way for all of us in the movie and every crew member, it was magical,” Blunt said of Oppenheimer‘s many nominations, and when learning of her own, “I did have a brief cry in the middle of Brooklyn, brief weep directly after picking up my dog’s poop.”
“I did pick up her poop and then I heard that I got nominated so it was perfect,” she continued, and husband John Krasinski “had a really good cry as well, after helping me with the poop. I think he went and put it in the trash and then we both cried.”
Blunt is nominated for her performance as Kitty Oppenheimer, wife of Cillian Murphy’s titular character, who slowly loses hold of her own life throughout their marriage and J. Robert Oppenheimer’s work on the Manhattan Project.
“I think there was so much about her that I empathize with — the idea of that extraordinary brain wasted and decaying at the ironing board and the anger and the simmering rage that would follow,” the star said of her real-life character. “She kind of raged against the machine as best she could but there’s only so much I think she could do, and then she married this icon and clearly worshipped him, loved him, supported him, was there, a hugely stabilizing force in his life and yet she was so unstable. I think she bled for him, but I think to her own detriment.”
Blunt has several scenes of playing drunk in the film, but said only one time in her career has she actually had a few drinks before a drunk scene.
“I’ve done it once and it was a disaster. I was so paranoid and messy — it was way back in the day, I’m not even going to tell you what it was for. No, I prefer to be stone-cold sober,” Blunt explained, teasing, “I mean I seem to have done this a couple of times, I’m like the go-to for ugly drunks.”
Horowitz asked her at one point about previously meeting with Oppenheimer director Christopher Nolan for a role in 2008’s The Dark Knight, which eventually went to Katie Holmes. “I don’t think I was right… the best girl wins, it’s alright,” Blunt responded, and when it came to Kitty there was no competition as she joked, “Nothing says raging drunk like Emily Blunt, and Chris knows that.”
Throughout the hour-long conversation, Blunt also weighed in on possible (or unlikely) follow-ups to some of her most iconic films, including The Devil Wears Prada (“Sometimes things should be cherished and preserved in this bubble and it’s OK. We’re all good with it”), Sicario 3 (“I hear rumblings but there’s nothing firm. I think it’s hearsay”) and Edge of Tomorrow (“I think that’s a more real conversation…. I think when we were first talking about the sequel, it was right before I was about to do Mary Poppins, so it was quite a while. And then I think if we’re going to do one, we would have to reimagine what the sequel will look like.”)
And after Krasinski has had success in shifting to directing, Blunt said of taking that route herself, “Maybe one day. I don’t know quite yet if I want to, but I’m becoming increasingly interested and yeah, maybe one day.”
The conversation will be available in its entirety on the podcast Happy Sad Confused with Josh Horowitz, released on Feb. 12.