Interview: Kristen Stewart on Adventureland, New Moon, and The Runaways

Kristen Stewart doesn't like interviews, as near as I can tell. In fact, her Adventureland co-star Jesse Eisenberg, who stammers nervously as much as Michael Cera, even calls her the "awkward one" in their duo. I recently sat down with her to discuss her latest role as an amusement park employee whose dysfunction slowly beguiles Eisenberg's character, as well as the next chapter in the Twilight saga, New Moon, and the big news that she'll be playing Joan Jett in The Runaways. I got her to talk, but I can't say it was easy.

Cole Haddon: [Adventureland] is set in the '80s, a decade you weren't even born in. Did you learn anything traveling back in time for this amusement-park comedy?

Kristen Stewart: It was so much easier to have a separate life, so much easier to be different people to different people. If you're not connected to Facebook, updating every day, or if people can't get in touch with you every moment, you can be different people to different people when you need to. You have more privacy. [My character] satisfies and fulfills whatever she needs to with different people, and she's different to all of them. You're one thing to everybody if you're connected to everybody.

CH: [Adventureland] isn't just a movie. It's also the worst summer job writer-director Greg Mottola ever had. Did you ever have any crappy summer jobs?

KS: Nope. I was acting.

CH: Well then, a lot of the movie is about finding out what you're supposed to be when life gets in the way of your plans. Do you ever think about what you'd be up to if you hadn't become an actress?

KS: I don't know what I'd do. I'd have a lot of pent-up energy I'd have to throw at something and, if it wasn't this, it would be very unsatisfying because I'm not as good at writing or anything like that. I'm not very good at anything else. What [I] do [as an actress] is so self-indulgent; it's so self-reflexive, and you think about people and how they deal with one another. That's what I would have to continue to do. I'd be the overly analytical girl.

CH: But you're trapped, you'd say, by the creative side of yourself?

KS: I'm bad with my hands. I can't make things. My head is far from organized, so I wouldn't be good at a desk job. [She shrugs.]

CH: New Moon is about to start shooting. What can we look forward to?

KS: We're in pre-production, so we've started establishing looks and dynamics -- and they're all flying. I mean, I'm excited to get back into it. We're just going to pick up where we left off. I'm not trying to get into a new head space for a new time. I'm excited because the story is kind of scaled down a little bit, too. [Edward] leaves her, and that's what the entire first movie is based on. So when you take that away, there is still a story, which I think is impressive. It's not just these two characters that make it. She's solitary, and she's, like, entirely depressed, and she matures.Taylor Lautner is still playing Jacob, and he's buff, too -- because that's so important! [She's being sarcastic, of course]. He's so good. Unless we had a counterpart that was going to briefly outshine what was so great in the first one, that would be a feat, and I think that he's got it. So I can't wait to see how he's able to pull her out of what he does; she's like a zombie, and he's like the light. It's like such a tragic story, because it's like, that's who I should be with, but I'm totally in love with the guy I shouldn't be with!

CH: What about The Runaways? Are you excited to be playing Joan Jett?

KS: It's a big job. I've never played a real person before. I've only played parts that were very personal for a lot of people. On this one, there's the personal responsibility for the character and there is also somebody who this means so much to. That period of her life was so important for her. It kick-started her whole career. Like everything that she cares about and loves. It's very important, so I'm nervous and intimidated but that's like the best way to feel before you do a movie. I'm excited about the music. I'm excited about Dakota playing Cheri Currie. It's intense. I'm going to cinematically de-flower Dakota Fanning.