Kate Hudson on Casting Matthew McConaughey in ‘How to Lose a Guy’
Kate Hudson has opened up about her insistence on casting Matthew McConaughey in “How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days.” The actor reflected on her life and career during a Life In Pictures talk at BAFTA in London on Friday.
Hudson, who acknowledged her strength in rom-coms during the 2000s, revealed that she and the studio executives at the time initially disagreed on the direction for “How To Lose A Guy in 10 Days.”
“I’m such a cheerleader for actors in our industry, but for rom-coms you need that guy to have chemistry with,” Hudson told moderator Briony Hanson, director of film for the British Council. Of the casting process for the 2003 movie, she added: “We just kept hitting our heads against the wall, and the studio and I weren’t agreeing.”
The actress revealed that she had “approval of everything” in the end, because she “fought back on a lot of things,” including on the choice for her co-star. Former Paramount Pictures CEO Sherry Lansing reportedly asked Hudson for her first pick to play Benjamin Barry, opposite Hudson’s Andie Anderson, at which point the performer suggested McConaughey.
“We had an energy together, I wanted to play with him,” Hudson said. “It felt kinetic. We both have a competitive spirit, we’re both super athletic. We like to push each other and I just love Matthew’s commitment to everything; he’s razor-focused. What you think he is, is is.”
Elsewhere in the conversation, Hudson discussed the difficulty in getting the tone right for comedy, and how much energy it requires from the actor. “Comedies are more exhausting, to keep that pace all day and to find the energy,” she said. “When the day is done doing comedy, I want to go to bed. When the day is done doing drama, emotional work, I want to go for a drink.”
While discussing her place in the rom-com genre and comedies more broadly, Hudson revealed she would be open to taking on a franchise-scale project in future, and discussed the Marvel Cinematic Universe. She mentioned her half-brother, Wyatt Russell, and recalled a conversation about his work as John Walker/U.S. Agent in 2021’s Disney+ series “The Falcon And The Winder Soldier.”
“I remember him calling me and going, ‘You gotta do a Marvel,’” Hudson said. “I’d be open to it, for sure. Why not? If it was right, I would love it, I think I’d have a lot of fun.”
The actor also spoke about the lack of female-led films while discussing her 2009 film “Bride Wars,” which she starred in alongside Anne Hathaway and also produced. “There’s definitely an appetite and a space for [female-led films], but I look forward to there being a bigger space,” she said, while praising the superhero genre. “You’ve got ‘Captain Marvel’ – Marvel is wrapping their arms around women. But it’s still rare.”
Although Hudson’s Life In Pictures talk spanned more than 20 years of her career, the actor said she and her stepfather Kurt Russell spoke about landing one role every five or 10 years that “gives you another 10 years in the business,” and nodded to Russell’s work with Quentin Tarantino. As for her own once-a-decade experience, she praised Rian Johnson for casting her as Birdie Jay in this year’s “Glass Onion.”
“[This role] just nourished every part of me as an actor,” Hudson said. “I just felt like I was given material that I could play with. When you have good material like that, and you have people you feel safe with, it feels like why we do it. We want to do things that go out on a limb. It doesn’t happen very often.”
The conversation turned to television, which Hudson said she would be open to exploring more in the near future. She revealed a project is currently in development in partnership with “Girls” creator Lena Dunham, and that she is “actively looking” to direct and is considering starting with a television project.
“It’s the first time I’ve been really moved to want to invest in something like that again,” she said. “But I want to look at the next television project very specifically, like I would look at my career in film, because you really have to sit in that character for at least six months.”