Chatting with Renee Zellweger: Wisdom, advice and her role in the must see movie #BridgetJonesBaby

Inside scoop! Every once in a while we get the chance to do a celeb interview that is extra special.  My chance to join an intimate chat with Renee Zellweger and Sharon Maguire, the Director of Bridget Jones Baby director this week was nothing short of amazing. After attending the NYC American premiere the night before a small group of ladies and myself were able to sit down for an afternoon tea with this powerful duo. Renee and Sharon were fabulous conversationalists! What a way to spend an afternoon Chatting with Renee Zellweger!

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Honest, hilarious, and full of wisdom. After chatting, Renee even took the time to fool around in the photo booth with us. She was gracious, funny, and not the least bit rushed. Love her!

Bridget Jones Baby hits theaters today Friday September 16th and is an absolute MUST SEE.

Chatting with Renee Zellweger

My Favorite snippets from our Q&A conversation

Take a peek at all the great stuff Renee and Sharon shared with us. I was curious what it was like to come back to her iconic role 12 years later. After seeing the movie, I felt like I was reconnecting with an old friend. So I asked Renee the following:

What was it like to come back to this character after all these years? Did you have to change your mindset?How did you get back to being Bridget Jones again?

Renee:

When they sent the script, it felt like this fantastically happy reunion, and it’s reminded me how muchI love her. I love her friends and her parents and her world, and then,I got really terrified because I thought, “Oh God. I really– I don’t want to mess this up” because, I mean, I know tha when I discovered her in the books, like so many other people, you know, we fell in love with her.

We have affection for her, and, you know, she holds a lot of meaning for us. I didn’t want to disappoint anybody.

It was the happiest reunion. It was so much fun to be back in her shoes or her boots and her walk and her laugh and her voice and her not quite altogether wardrobe and, you know,and back with her friends. You know?

On researching her role 

In this movie, Bridget’s career is news producer so Director Sharon Maguire shared they also “all went to a show called “Good Morning Britain”, And it’s kind of a crazy live news show”. Renee said she spent about 3 weeks there learning the ropes!  Can you imagine having Renee hang out with you at work everyday for a few weeks?

Similarly, Sharon Maguire said for the 1st movie, they sent Renee to work at a publishing house to do research for her role.  She feels this “research helps her and Renee  find the authenticity of the world and the character, it’s kind of important for us to do that.”

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Bridget Jones may be a role she plays, but to all of us, Renee Zellweger IS Bridget Jones as her acting has brought this beloved character to life in a way that makes Bridget even more relatable to everyone.
with her inner dialogues and mishaps  – each of us can relate to what its like to feel that need to “measure up” to the expectations of others.

What Advice Would You Give the 30 year old Bridget Jones?

Renee: That’s a difficult one to answer because, you know, looking back, hindsight, 20/20, all the things we wish we knew then.

We wouldn’t have wasted so much time on these stupid things.  I don’t know that the lessons that we learn are as potent if we don’t live the experiences that teach us.

I don’t know that I would give her any advice about it. I think I might leave her alone and let her find her way.

Sharon: For me, coming to the script, you know, 15 years later, the whole experience, I think it’s imbued with a sense of the fantasies you have for your life and how they don’t work out.

And I would say to her, you know, that your fantasies for life probably won’t work out. But, life will throw other fantasies at you, and go with those. You know, life deals you a different deck of cards, and you have to find the fantasies in there.

I’d also tell her about her relationship with Mark Darcy,  “You know, you can’t legislate love. Love has its own way – you can’t rationalize it. Love finds its own way.”

Renee’s Wisdom on Motherhood and Life

When asked what scene in this movie resonated with her own life, Renee didn’t just pick a silly humorous scene which she easily could have shared. Instead, she offered one of the most heartfelt and personal responses I’ve ever heard from an A list celeb in a conversation about their movie roles.

Renee: Well, I guess more than a scene maybe a theme in the film that her friends have kind of moved on. And they have families, and they have partners. So, their lives have changed.

And I believe that  from what I’ve experienced with the people that I’m closest to, you evolve when you become a mom. You become a bigger version of yourself. You become a more powerful version of yourself, a fully realized version of yourself.

And I’m watching all of my friends and my, you know, family members evolve in this way. And I’m a bit of a late bloomer, and so, it’s interesting to kind of be chronologically in that place, but not have– not experience that same transformation at the same time as your friends and the people closest to you.

It’s very strange, and it’s– it is a very unique kind of loneliness. It’s a bit of– yeah. It’s– it’s very unique because then it means defining your growth in a different way and insisting that it happen despite the absence of this thing that makes it happen naturally.

So, I think that’s really something. 

Could you love her any more for this honest answer? No wonder Renee has been able to bring to life one of the most relatable characters ever in movie history!

On Bridget’s Hilarious and Awkward Physical Comedy

Renee:

I love comedy that comes from truth. I love comedy that comes from awkward sort of humanexperiences. I mean, there’s nothing funnier, and we all relate to them because we go, “Oh my gosh. Thank God that’s not me. Wait. That really could be me. Oh gosh. You know what? That is me.”

And I think that that’s why she’s such a beloved character because we recognize ourselves in her struggles and not just her challenges she faces in her life, but in her, you know, her struggles toward self-acceptance. She sort of represents the truth of who we are versus who it is that we aspire to be.

And you’ll see plenty of this in the movie….. one of my fave scenes is definitely this mud disaster when Bridget is wearing all white to a muddy music festival.

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Collaborating to Bring Bridget Jones to Life

Director Sharon Maguire and Renee Zellweger seemed to make an amazing team and I felt their relationship shine through in the interview as they finished each others sentences When we asked if Renee ever influenced the lines and direction of Bridget, both ladies were emphatic it was a collaborative process.

Renee says:

 It’s collaborative. It’s always collaborative, and that’s what makes this experience so much fun because we all know this character in a different way. And I feel like she kind of comes to lifesomewhere between the two of us.

And I always feel her present– most present and most alive, Bridget Jones and me, when I hear Sharon laughing from the nextroom behind the monitor.

Bridget Jones’s Baby Trailer

Catch Bridget Jones’s Baby in theaters this Friday September 16th 

Chatting with Renee Zellweger

Note: Thanks to Universal for inviting ClassyMommy.com to cover the premiere and attend this exclusive roundtable interview. As always, all thoughts and opinions are our own. 

About Colleen Padilla

Colleen Padilla, the founder and editor of ClassyMommy.com lives in the Philly suburbs and is a full time mom for her 2 children, Mackenzie (7) and Kyle (5). Colleen and the Classy Mommy website have been featured on Fox News, Good Morning America, The New York Times, Parenting Magazine, The New York Post, local Philadelphia ABC, CBS, and NBC programs. Colleen has appeared in a TV special about Alpha Moms on South Korea’s NBC affiliate SBS. She also co-authored The Digital Mom Handbook (HarperCollins).

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