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Dickinson Has Hailee Steinfeld Thinking a Lot About Fame

On a per-minute basis, Apple TV+’s Dickinson is probably the densest show on TV, in terms of a combination of literary references, a contemporary soundtrack, and scenes that can suddenly shift from hard comedy to poignancy. Balancing it all at the show’s center, there’s Hailee Steinfeld as the legendary Emily Dickinson herself, playing a brash young version of the great poet who alternately sulky and cutting and enthusiastic about throwing ragers. Dickinson is Steinfeld’s first TV show, after a movie career of attention-grabbing performances from her breakout in True Grit through The Edge of Seventeen and Bumblebee. In making the show, she relished the chance to dig deeper into a single character, as Steinfeld told Vulture over the phone. Along the way, she also found herself thinking about her own career, her fame, and even her approach to the music she makes.

I feel like Emily Dickinson, known late-in-life shut-in, would handle quarantine pretty well. Has playing her helped you get through all this?
In the beginning, it did. At this point? Not so sure. But I’ve had conversations with castmates and [Dickinson creator] Alena [Smith] about how Emily would’ve had no problem with this whatsoever.

Have you done any bread-baking? The bread Emily makes on the show looks so good.
I have not, but you’ve given me something to do now.

In the first season, the scenes that really stood out are those fights between Emily and her father, with you and Toby Huss facing off, especially the one where he slaps her and she disassociates and “goes to the circus.” What was it like to film that?
That relationship was one of my favorites to figure out. Having all 10 scripts at the beginning, I loved that I was able to see this clear arc, but the discoveries as we filmed kept happening. Toby and I had so many conversations that were fun to have and uncomfortable to have about that relationship, which is very loving and protective. It’s complicated and tricky.

Was there a moment where the relationship clicked for you?

I had a few, and luckily the first one came in the first episode, with the scene where the whole family is sitting around the table and Emily decides to announce that her poem is being published and all hell breaks loose. That was a moment I had on set with Toby where I feel like we really locked. The scene was rewritten a few times, and Alena was very particular with every word, and once we nailed it, that was definitely a moment.

Emily’s other defining relationship is with Sue Gilbert, played by Ella Hunt. They don’t even necessarily have the words to describe the love they feel for each other. How was it figuring out how to play that?
I don’t know how to describe how the dynamic was different to me than making a film, but because each episode felt like making a film, it felt like we had dug so deep. Ella and I were able to have the time to have these conversations, and I don’t know if I’ve had conversations with actors as I’ve had with this project. Ones where you set aside the time and sit down and discuss. Sue was somebody that saw Emily for who she was. A lot of people had all these opinions and preconceived notions about this person, and Sue saw through that. It’s a really beautiful relationship that happens to be between two women who just see each other. Continue reading “Dickinson Has Hailee Steinfeld Thinking a Lot About Fame”

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Hailee Steinfeld Reflects on Making ‘True Grit’ and Why No Oscar Talk on Set Was Key

Hailee Steinfeld, star of ‘Dickinson’ on AppleTV+, reflects on making the Coen Brothers’ 2010 western ‘True Grit’ with Jeff Bridges and Josh Brolin. She also explains why the lack of conversation on set about potential box office or Oscar glory was key:

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5 Beauty Products Hailee Steinfeld Swears By

Is there anything Hailee Steinfeld can’t do? The 23-year-old actress (Oscar-nominated, mind you) and singer (she recently released her EP Half-Written Story) has won millions over with her wide range of talents. After one phone call with her, however, I found myself even more impressed by how passionate she is speaking about building up self-confidence.

“I learn the importance of self-love more and more as each day goes by. The power that comes with it can change your life, but it takes time—at least, it did for me,” Hailee says. “Society’s standards constantly change and are confusing. We see this feed of altered images and think, Oh, this is what people like. If this is what people are attracted to, is that what you have to be?”

She confronted insecurity at a young age, while doing photo shoots. “I would see the photos and the beauty marks on my face would get taken out of the image. I would see myself without them and think. Oh god, they’re not beautiful. They’re ugly,” she recalled. “Now, I’ve learned to love these marks even if someone else classifies them as imperfections or not beautiful.”

As for how she reminds herself to stay positive she shared, “I tell myself that I am happy, to stand tall, and to smile. This makes me feel like I’m bringing out my best. You constantly have to remind yourself of how unique, beautiful, and special you are.”

Other self-care practices she’s been leaning on–especially while most of the world was still in lockdown–include “going for walks, getting fresh air–there’s nothing more refreshing than just waking up and filling your lungs with fresh air,” she said. She’s also been having sit-down dinners at home with her family every night. “I can’t tell you the last time that’s been something we were able to do,” she shared. “We’re taking time to reflect on who we are, what makes us happy, and what really matters in our lives. This is something that I’ll never take for granted again.”

On top of having her inner beauty practices down pat, she was also eager to share all of the beauty products she’s been loving (lucky us!). Keep on reading for her top five picks.

Kora Organics Noni Glow Sleeping Mask
“I feel like my skin is psychotically sensitive–so my beauty routine consists of very few products and products with natural ingredients. This is a super lightweight gel mask that leaves skin super glowy and smooth. When I saw this mask was a ‘sleeping mask,’ I was like no way, because if I put something on my skin for just four minutes it’s game over. I tried this and it’s actually my favorite thing in the world. I was literally receiving compliments on my skin over FaceTime–that’s when you know this stuff is working.” Continue reading “5 Beauty Products Hailee Steinfeld Swears By”

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Hailee Steinfeld Stresses Importance of Equality and Visibility After Peabody Win for ‘Dickinson’

Dickinson, the coming-of-age Apple TV+ series about poet and queer icon Emily Dickinson, earned a Peabody Award for Entertainment in 2019. It was one of 10 series, including Watchmen, recognized this year, and star and executive producer Hailee Steinfeld, who stresses the importance of its message about equality in an acceptance speech posted to Twitter, couldn’t be prouder of its achievement.

“I am so proud to be part of a show that is about such an important woman in history who was way ahead of her time,” she says. “I’m even more proud to be part of a show that is about fighting for what you believe is right, a show that is about seeing and being seen and understood, and a show that is about seeing everyone as equal.”

Debuting in November 2019, the series mixed elements of a literary period drama, teen dramedy, and romantic comedy to create its own unique blend of storytelling. It also didn’t shy away from Dickinson’s sexuality, letting the aspiring poet explore her complicated and romantic feelings for best friend Sue Gilbert (Ella Hunt).

“At the end of the day, we’re all human no matter what gender we identify as, the color of our skin, who we choose to love,” Steinfeld says. “This message of equality and fighting for what we believe is right is so incredibly important right now more than ever as our country continues to fight injustice, inequality and racism.”

The actress continues by stressing the importance of visibility amid the ongoing protests against police brutality and racism. “In this fight, I believe we must continue to shine a light and celebrate the stories of those who are marginalized and oppressed because by doing so we’re forced to think critically about how far we’ve come but how far we still have to go,” she says. “Their stories matter and it’s so important that we continue to shine a light on these stories and fight for equality.”

Following the critical success of season one, Apple TV+ confirms the series is set to return with season two later this year. While the coronavirus pandemic has temporarily shut down film and TV productions, Steinfeld tells ET that Dickinson “finished a few months prior” to the outbreak and that “everything’s on track.”

The actress also says when the series returns, time will have passed and will introduce some new characters, including Pico Alexander as Henry “Ship” Shipley, an Amherst College dropout who boards with the Dickinson family, and Finn Jones as newspaper editor Samuel Bowles, to its “amazing cast.”

“We just went in on season two,” Steinfeld says, teasing that the new season is “pretty wild. There’s a lot of twists and turns. There’s a lot of unexpected [moments]… I’m excited to see it all come together myself.”

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#SpokenFromHome Edition 1: Hailee Steinfeld

She shares her struggles of overcoming work-from-home anxiety and how she is making the most of the crisis. Her latest single “I Love You’s” is inspired by Annie Lennox’s 1995 hit, which talks about refocusing on herself after a going through a difficult breakup:

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Hailee Steinfeld Finds Clarity Through Acting and Music-Making | V Magazine

23-year-old Hailee Steinfeld is an artist of ambidexterity, showcasing supremacy across an impressive repertoire of on-screen roles in film and television, most notably in the award-winning movies True Grit and The Edge of Seventeen, while also boasting a long-standing discography in pop-leaning music. Currently executive producing and starring in Alena Smith’s historical drama series Dickinson as the trailblazing female poet of the 1850s Emily Dickinson and simultaneously riding the success of her newly released EP Half Written Story, Steinfeld is no stranger to balancing a multitude of highly-acclaimed, creative roles.

Garnering an Academy nomination at just 14 years old for her supporting role in True Grit, Steinfeld’s adolescent growth largely occurred in the spotlight, and a majority of her learned virtues stem from her various character embodiments. “There are characters that I’ve played that have taught me so much about who I am,” she says. “Even though I’m not necessarily going through exactly what these characters are going through as I play them out in my real life, I still get to grow through those experiences and learn about myself every step of the way.” For Steinfeld, acting provides an exploratory insight into her own identity as she enters different mindscapes in pursuit of perfecting her entertainment abilities.

On the essence of her fearless, history-based character in Apple TV+’s Dickinson, Steinfeld recognizes the importance of both upholding the statutes of the path-forging poet’s society-shifting work and the modernization of her narrative for today’s world, citing the role as a contemporary reflection of issues in the 21st century. “One thing I love so much about this show is that it is in no way putting anyone in a box,” she says. “I think that we are moving closer and closer to that in our world today. What’s so wild about this show is that it takes place hundreds and hundreds of years ago, and yet we’re still dealing with some of the issues that they were then. Our show looks at that time through a modern lens.”

On music’s terrain, Steinfeld is continuously discovering her sound with each studio session she traverses, and her latest project, Half Written Story, is certainly one of her most eye-opening bodies of work to-date. “I find that I’m in this constant experimental process when it comes to music,” she explains. “With [Half Written Story], I really just wanted to make songs that sounded the way I felt when I was going through what it is I’m talking about in each song, and I feel like I accomplished that.”

Seeking inspiration entirely from her personal experiences and aspiring to instill an unwavering sense of confidence in her listeners, Steinfeld harmonizes the lessons she’s learned from heartbreak, specifically on her chart-topping track “I Love You’s.” She expounds, “The ultimate message behind that song is realizing the importance of making a decision for yourself and sticking with it. I think when we experience pain or heartbreak we’ll look for something to distract us from that. I mean, I have in the past, anyways. I finally got to a point where I was like, I just need to regain my sense of self here.” Hoping to share that epiphany with the world, Steinfeld’s musical prowess is one of melodic self-growth and good-natured, lyrical wisdom.

At a safe distance, photographer Connor Franta captured Hailee Steinfeld in tranquil, self-isloation amid the COVID-19 pandemic, below. Leaving V with a final word of advice in these times of uncertainty, Steinfeld soothingly states, “Do your best to maintain a positive attitude and, most importantly, breathe.”

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Hailee Steinfeld Is Ready For Love Again After Processing Emotions in New EP

Hailee Steinfeld gets candid about writing her emotional EP, ‘Half Written Story,’ with ET’s Katie Krause. The 23-year-old talks about heartbreak, love and what she went through to write this album, which is out now:

Hailee Steinfeld reflects on ‘True Grit’ as the 10-year anniversary of the film approaches. She also talks to ET’s Katie Krause about ‘Dickinson’ season 2, ‘Pitch Perfect 4’ and what could be next for Spider-Gwen in the next ‘Spiderverse’ project:

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