Call it The Year of Elizabeth Banks. In the past six months, the 38-year-old has starred in three films, including stealing scene after scene as the flamboyantly fashioned Effie Trinket in The Hunger Games. The streak continues with the charming drama People Like Us. Banks plays Frankie, a bartending single mom who is befriended by a brother she never knew she had (Chris Pine) after their father passes away. Banks spoke to Flare.com about her disarming new role, her favourite red carpet looks, and why she can’t wait to revisit Effie Trinket.
FLARE: Was this an emotional story for you?
Elizabeth Banks: Oh yeah. There’s a lot of ups and downs. I’ve seen this movie a bunch of times, I know what’s going to happen, and I still cry [laughs].
FLARE: Do you have a go-to movie that you know will make you cry?
EB: Beaches. That, and Terms of Endearment. When she passes away and Shirley MacLaine is in the room – that just kills me.
FLARE: It’s been such a busy year for you, which means a lot of red carpets. What are some of your favourite outfits that you’ve worn this year?
EB: I loved the yellow Bill Blass dress that I wore to the London premiere of The Hunger Games. I love the Marc Jacobs sequin dress that I wore to the Paris premiere. And I just wore an Eli Saab jumpsuit to the MTV Movie Awards. It was one of my favourite things that I’ve ever worn.
FLARE: Are you looking forward to getting into the Effie Trinket wigs again on Catching Fire?
EB: I am. We go back this fall and I can’t wait. I love Effie, she is an amazing character.
FLARE: What is it like to play a character twice?
EB: Effie has so many layers. She has literal layers of clothes and hair and makeup, and then she has a lot of other layers. What’s great is anytime you can go to work with people you already know and trust. That’s why I’ve made five movies with Paul Rudd and six movies with Tobey Maguire. I’ve worked with the same directors. It’s just a level of trust and comfort.
FLARE: As a mom to a baby (Banks son, Felix, is 15 months), how was it to play a mom to a ten-year-old in People Like Us?
EB: I was not a parent yet when I made this movie. However my sister was a single mom and my nephew is almost the exact same age as the kid in this movie, so I took a lot of inspiration from watching her with my nephew. No matter what’s going on, that’s your priority on a daily basis.
People Like Us opens Friday, June 29.