Penelope Cruz and Javier Bardem are doing their very best to convince the world that it’s not love.
“All I can say about that is he’s one of the most amazing actors of our century,” Cruz says.
Bardem returns the compliment. “She’s just a beautiful actress,” he says. “I remember when we were much younger and met on the set of Jamon Jamon.”
If you’re expecting some tales of young lust, think again. Bardem says, “Thank God we did that movie. I was 22 and it was my first big role and it was her first role. We were young people who wanted to eat it all up.”
Cruz isn’t eating anything up this particular morning, but she’s drinking a 16-ounce glass of carrot juice. Her career is hot with two big summer films: Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona (now in theaters) and the Philip Roth adaptation Elegy (opening Friday). She’s currently in training to sing and dance in director Rob Marshall’s musical Nine.
Leave it to the stunning Penelope Cruz to heat up the August box office in a pair of very sexy roles. In Elegy, she’s a young college student who has a passionate affair with an older professor played by Ben Kingsley. And In Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona, Penelope is one of three women entangled in relationships with an artist played by Javier Bardem.
While Woody keeps the heavy-breathing scenes to a minimum, Cruz does lock lips with Scarlett Johansson, and there doesn’t seem to be much doubt that she’s doing the same in real-life with co-star Bardem. But Penelope isn’t confirming that he’s the latest of her off-screen leading men.
Q: Do you laugh a lot when Woody is directing you to be funny?
A: Actually, he made all of us forget that we were doing a comedy. Everyone was taking things very seriously, and my character suffers a lot. I felt like I was doing the most serious drama until I saw the movie with an audience in Cannes. I was like, ‘What are they laughing about?’ And then I went, ‘Of course, Woody is such a genius.’
To continue with the Vicky Cristina Barcelona celebration updates, I am posting a handful of gorgeous images of Pe from the 2008 Cannes Film Festival (where the film made it’s world premiere). We simply adore this photocall, and she could not be more cute if she tried!
Vicky Cristina Barcelona was released this past Friday (August 15th) and to celebrate here is a batch of promo images of gorgeous Penélope as Maria Elena. Since the film made it’s premiere at Cannes, reviews were very positive for Penélope’s performance, some even going as far to say another Oscar nod could be in her future! Sadly for me, the film didn’t get into release in my neck of the woods, but I still couldn’t be more excited for the movie!
From Rolling Stone:
What sparks the movie is Penélope Cruz as Maria Elena, the painter’s ex-wife, a fireball given to strong emotions — hell, she once stabbed Juan Antonio during an argument. You haven’t lived till you’ve heard Cruz and Bardem trading Woody Allen one-liners in Spanish. They’re so ferociously funny you won’t even need the subtitles. Bardem, spinning 180 degrees from his bad-haircut villain in No Country for Old Men, is charm personified. And watching him switch tactics to tempt the luscious, pliable Johansson and the resistant, engaged Hall is a lesson in the art of seduction. But watching Cruz, switching between Spanish and English, untamed passion and chilly despair, is a lesson in the art of acting. Oscar-nominated for Pedro Almodóvar’s Volver, Cruz should have the golden boy at her feet this time. Whether she’s (whoa!) planting hot kisses on Johansson in a darkroom or shedding light on her own secret pain, Cruz is a stunner in every sense of the word — wild, erotic, quick-witted, touching and possessed of a beauty that can sneak up and break your heart. In this light-comic breeze of a movie, Cruz is a gathering storm.
Opening in just under 700 theaters, Woody Allen’s romantic comedy Vicky Cristina Barcelona (MGM/Weinstein), starring Scarlett Johansson, Javier Bardem and Penelope Cruz, rounded out the Top 10 with $3.7 million, becoming Allen’s biggest opening movie since 2000′s Small Time Crooks as well as the second-biggest opening of his 35-year career.
1. Tropic Thunder
2. The Dark Knight
3. Star Wars: The Clone Wars
5. Pineapple Express
6. The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor
7. Mamma Mia!
8. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2
9. Step Brothers
10. Vicky Cristina Barcelona
Penelope Cruz walks into a Beverly Hills hotel room with a stunning red dress looking ravishing. Quietly reserved and ferociously guarded, Cruz is receiving strong reviews as the tempestuous ex-wife in Woody Allen’s Vicky Cristina Barcelona.
Cruz is also starring in the erotic adaptation of Phillip Roth’s Elegy and is about to join the star-studded cast of the musical Nine. Cruz talked to Paul Fischer.
Question: At the press conference yesterday Woody Allen talked about, and it was very funny to hear him talk about the arguments that you had with Javier in Spanish, scenes where you’re arguing with Javier in Spanish, and he had no idea, Woody Allen had no idea what you were saying, until you went back to his, to edit the film, and get someone who could translate what you were saying. How freeing is it for you as an actress to be able to do stuff like that, without even worrying or caring what the director thinks?
Woody Allen knew he was making a comedy when he was shooting Vicky Cristina Barcelona in Spain. Penelope Cruz approached it as a drama.
“I felt like I was doing the most serious drama that I had done in my career,” Cruz says now, with the sexy romantic comedy set for release tomorrow across North America. As a slick return to form, and looking like a gorgeous travelogue despite its modest $15-million budget, Vicky Cristina Barcelona is the funniest Allen comedy since Mighty Aphrodite in the 1990s.
“When I saw the film in Cannes,” Cruz says of the world premiere in May at France’s glamourous Riviera filmfest, I said, ‘Why are they laughing?’
“I understood that when I read the script. But preparing Maria Elena (her tempestuous Spanish temptress) and then playing her for those few weeks, I forgot. I was suffering with her. And I think probably Woody was laughing about that, too, about how seriously everyone was taking everything. Because all the characters are suffering and struggling.
Penélope Cruz at the screening of Elegy in New York City on August 5, 2008. Penélope kept it simple in vintage Chanel Couture, channelling the gothic with a strapless, floor-length, black dress and tailored jacket. A cocktail ring on her index finger added a touch of sparkle, while the detailing on her jacket lifted what could otherwise have been a heavy look.
Welcome to Captivating Cruz, the newest fan site dedicated to the amazingly talented and stunningly beautiful Penélope Cruz. We have been fans of this stunning Spanish actress for years and wished to start our own site to pay tribute and keep up-to-date on the latest happenings in the world of Penélope.
Please note that this is not your usual fan site; this is a news blog with the purpose of serving the fans with the latest news and photos and just to discuss Pe and her career. We have no plans to create a full blown and complete site, at least not at the moment. Also, we do not post gossip regarding Penélope’s private life nor paparazzi materials. This is because Miss Cruz is very protective of her private life and we wish to respect that.
We hope you enjoy the site and will return again for more!
Penélope Cruz arrives and leaves the Late Show With David Letterman in New York City on August 6, 2008.
Penélope Cruz at the Vicky Cristina Barcelona Special Screening in New York City on August 6, 2008. She is pictured with Javier Bardem, Harvey Weinstein and Patricia Clarkson.