Vicky Krieps Says She Avoided Hollywood After ‘Phantom Thread’: ‘Nothing Was as Good as Paul’

The Luxembourgish star has four projects floating around this year, but she admits it took her time to adjust after Paul Thomas Anderson's fashion drama thrust her into the limelight.
PHANTOM THREAD, Vicky Krieps, 2017. © Focus Features /Courtesy Everett Collection
"Phantom Thread"
©Focus Features/courtesy Everett Collect / Everett Collection

Luxembourgish actress Vicky Krieps was the belle of the ball (or at least of Film Twitter) in late 2017 when the release of Paul Thomas Anderson’s “Phantom Thread” thrust her into the spotlight. This year, she has four projects floating around, including M. Night Shyamalan’s “Old,” which released in theaters back in July; Cannes darling “Bergman Island,” now at the Toronto International Film Festival; “Beckett,” the Netflix drama that opened the Locarno Film Festival; and Barry Levinson’s Auschwitz prisoner biopic “The Survivor,” also at TIFF.

But while PTA’s highbrow fashion drama in which she starred opposite Daniel Day-Lewis turned Krieps into an actress everybody wanted to work with, she admitted in a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter that it took some time to adjust to newfound fame — and inevitably, led her to turn down projects.

“After ‘Phantom Thread,’ I really wasn’t interested in Hollywood, because it just felt like everything was the same and nothing was as good as Paul,” said Krieps, for whom the rigorous pace of the awards season stood in contrast to the usual pace of her life. “I come from this small country and grew up with cows and trees and forests.”

That twist of fate inevitably sent her back to Europe to pursue arthouse cinema. “I was sent a few scripts, which I accepted right away, even though they were small and independent,” she said.

She said it took two years and, later, lunch with Paul Thomas Anderson to “close the circle” on her skepticism of Hollywood.

“I remember Paul looking at me from over a bowl of ramen in this really little restaurant, and suddenly he said to me, ‘Vicky, I think we did a good movie.’ And I said, ‘Yes,’” she said. “It was really simple, but I think it was really important for both of us, after all this time, to just once, for us, say, ‘OK, I think we did a good job’.”

It was after this lunch with Paul Thomas Anderson that Krieps pursued finding a U.S. agent. While she mostly now resides in Berlin, she moved to LA, bought her own car, and eventually signed with CAA. “It makes a huge difference if you’re in your own car in LA,” she said.

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