Scarlett Johansson: ‘People pry so much. I’m constantly surprised by how rude people are’
I never wanted to be a sex symbol I wanted to be a character actor. Those are the actors I mostly admire. I think women that are curvy can be pigeonholed in that bombshell thing. It’s not like I actively look for sexy roles. It’s not a requirement that my character be pretty and delicate. I never think about my character being sexy, unless that’s written in.
It’s weird to be a recognisable face I’m not traumatised [by it] but I find it can bring out the worst in humanity sometimes. I’m constantly surprised by how rude people are. You’ll be having an intimate dinner with a friend and there’s somebody on the table behind with a cameraphone pointing at your face. I think, “I would never take a photo of someone without asking.”
When I was younger, my mum made sure I had a relatively normal life I went to school, I had neighbourhood friends, I went to camp. That kind of thing. Also, it was different back then. Recently, the media is unhealthily obsessed with very young actors. They’re very critical of them.
I think I have a little bit of my father’s Danish sense of humour He has a very dry wit. Being half-Danish, we regularly celebrated Danish culture growing up. We’d have a Danish Christmas. My mother is Jewish but we celebrated the holiday, more as a celebration of Danish culture than anything else. We always went to the Danish Seamen’s Church [in New York] and all kinds of festivals.
I don’t answer any questions about my private life I’m not a politician or anything like that, so I shouldn’t have to reveal that. I mean, people have enough. They pry so much that some things need to be personal. I feel no pressure. I just feel pressure to show up to work on time. I don’t feel like I have to be a certain way.
It excited me to play the part in ‘Avengers Assemble’ of a very strong woman Often-times in action films, and in comic-book movies, the female is the damsel in distress or a love interest, something like that. But Black Widow is intimidating. She wasn’t fighting and posing with the wind in her hair! She gets down and dirty – I like that.
I always make decisions based on my emotions I’m not very practical. I think I’m hyper-sensitive and I use that for my job, so there are certainly a lot of differences to Black Widow. She has to remain unfeeling and lukewarm, in a sense. To keep a distance and not make decisions based on her emotions.
I never wanted to play Marilyn Monroe [Johansson was reportedly in the running to play the actress in last year’s My Week with Marilyn.] I don’t know. It’s just a job – I didn’t have the passion for that. I love Marilyn Monroe. She’s a very underrated actor but it just seemed exhausting in a way that I couldn’t wrap my head around.