Anna Kendrick is so much more than a funny tweet or a cute song with cups - and she’s just getting started.
It’s hard to write about Anna Kendrick without imagining her reading it and cringing. Despite being a card-carrying member of the celebrity club for some time now, Anna’s more awkward than a baby giraffe. That’s not speculation either, it’s actually in her twitter profile description: “Pale, awkward and very very small.” And just in case you missed the memo, she follows that up with regular reminders in her feed too: “Does anyone else think ‘don’t be a weirdo, don’t be a weirdo’ over and over when entering social gatherings? ’Cause I don’t.” “When is ‘that terrified of everyone I don’t know’ feeling going to go away?” “Yes, of course I got your text – I’m just ignoring it. Don’t make it weird.” You can imagine her feeling very squeamish at the idea of someone talking about her using cover profile cliches like “pint-sized star” or saying “this is Anna’s year”. Both of which would be true, by the way. So, even though you kind of want to say that if Selena Gomez’s Instagram and Jennifer Lawrence had a baby, it would be her (talented, hilarious and a hit on social media), you don’t. The one thing you might get away with calling her? A hard worker. This girl has starred in over 30 movies since 2003.
In the second half of this year alone, she has three movies – Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, The Accountant and Trolls – and a book of essays titled Scrappy Little Nobody all poised for release. The first, Mike and Dave Need Wedding Dates, stars one of her best pals Aubrey Plaza of Parks and Recreation fame, fellow Pitch Perfect alumn Adam DeVine and blockbuster veteran Zac Efron. Following a girlpower summer movie lineup including Tarzan (where, OK, Jane was still rescued, but she also had some sassy dialogue, jumped into a river of hippos and wore more than a loin cloth) and Ghostbusters (enough said), Mike and Dave... is set to the flip the buddy comedy on its head; with girls who can out-party the guys. “[Aubrey and I] found this script before there was a director attached or anything,” she told Refinery 29. “And we were like, ‘I mean, we’re going to make this movie.’ And then, we have to let the powers that be think that they’re in charge and running Hollywood. And then, we were like, ‘Hi, we’re going to be in the movie. Don’t object, just let it happen.’”
Girl bosses are having a real moment, but Anna has been championing movies that buck the norm for some time. Her breakout movie was Twilight, where she played Bella’s best friend Jessica Stanley. Kendrick was good, but with so much hype surrounding Kristen and Rob, it wasn’t quite her time. Then came Up in the Air, where she played an uptight college grad opposite George Clooney – whom she swears is beyond nice and would run lines with her despite being, you know, George Clooney – and scored herself an Oscar nomination for Best Supporting Actress. Next, she jumped to cult favourite Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, which Anna recently admitted in an interview with Net-a-Porter’s The Edit that she didn’t really understand. “I did Scott Pilgrim because I was obsessed with [director] Edgar Wright’s work. On paper, I did not get [the script] at all. I trusted it would be up to the level of work he had created before, and it was.
But the entire time we were making it, I had no idea what was going on!” From there, she ping-ponged her special breed of sarcastic/vulnerable acting across any project big or small that piqued her interest, including black comedy 50/50, rom-com What to Expect When You’re Expecting, kid’s movie ParaNorman and crime drama End of Watch. Then came Pitch Perfect, and the legendary “Cups” song. Fun fact: according to Vulture, Anna taught herself the cup routine after seeing Anna Burden perform it on YouTube, and when the writers of Pitch Perfect found out about this very unusual skillset, they added it in. “Cups” hit the top 10, Pitch Perfect was a runaway success and suddenly the world seemed to collectively stumble on her Twitter account and couldn’t get enough of her. She should have been set for saturation, but somehow Anna has avoided being on the cover of People and the side bar of Daily Mail. Her low-key lifestyle and attitude has stopped her from being another celeb on the red carpet conveyer belt. For starters, her public MO in interviews and on social media is self-deprecating humour as opposed to tell-all.
Real as it gets
Anna’s Twitter feed has spawned a mass of listicles from “14 times Anna Kendrick was the funniest person on Twitter” and “21 times Anna Kendrick said what we were all thinking”. Countless interviews and pithy tweets have her telling hilarious anecdotes, like the time a guy asked her to go home with her, and she thought he was homeless. Or when she and Aubrey went to Mexico and pretended to sulk when fans came to praise the other. Dig a little further though, and you’ll realise that while she’s hilarious, in an age where we laud “authenticity”, Anna is one of the rare few who keep her cards close to her chest. Google “Anna Kendrick boyfriend” and the first article that pops up is a “rare appearance” with Fault in Our Stars cinematographer Ben Richardson back in April. She doesn’t mention her best friend’s name in a TV interview, but will tell you about their 13-hour Lord of the Rings marathon. Interestingly, here’s a sneak peek from her new book she chose to share: “Sometimes, I like to run around photo shoots all carefree and wild, as a layer of protection. When I stay still and focus all my attention and energy on being the best little model I can be and still I get looks of disappointment and confusion because I don’t look like Kendall Jenner, it hurts my tiny feelings. (No one should be compared to Kendall Jenner. It’s cruel and unusual.) So I run around a little. I’m not an un-photographable troll! I’m just a little scamp who’s not focused.”
While perhaps some of her humour might be a defense mechanism, it has absolutely kept her sane, and allowed her to saturate the movie market without boring people. In her interview with Net-a-Porter’s The Edit, she revealed, “I definitely got to the point where I was like, ‘My life has been falling apart for four years, I need to get my act together.” Never in a million years would we have thought that. But though we may not know the inner workings of Anna just yet, here’s hoping her book will shed some more light. In any case, we’re pretty certain we know enough to know we definitely want to be friends with her.
A case for why you should add Anna on Instagram.
“I would just like to remind everybody of the reality of the situation.”
“Party/After Party/Truth In Advertising”
“This edit looks like I’m watching myself give a speech and I’m less than impressed.”
“...So happy I got to go to HP preview night tonight!!! So magical I cried two (or five) times. This is not an ad...”
“This plane just got smaller.”