Directors must love Jessica Alba

A couple weeks ago when Jessica Alba’s nude photos hit the net Elle also released an excerpt from an interview with her where she trashed screenwriters, the people who write her lines. The full interview came out and not only does she go after screenwriters, she also throws directors under the bus. First-time directors to be precise.

Alba’s previous forays into funny have never been quite as promising. There was 2007’s utterly flat Good Luck Chuck, in which Alba played a penguin researcher opposite Dane Cook (ha?), and 2008’s The Love Guru, a Mike Myers send-up about spirituality and hockey—two chronically foreign concepts that don’t really play to the passions of America’s moviegoing masses. Of course, Alba’s too savvy to trash any big names, and perhaps too kind to go overboard in assigning blame. She takes accountability where she needs to. “I know I haven’t been swimming in the deep end with some of the movies I’ve done,” she says. “I wasn’t trying to. I knew what they were.” Alba does, however, offer one clinical reason as to why these movies bombed. She whispers it: “First-time directors.”

Could any director turn those steaming piles of elephant dung into a polished diamond? Come on. At least admit it took a group effort to make those films suck as much as they did. Don’t sell yourself short. Although I am glad to see Jessica is making new friends. She’s really good at it.

Jessica also calls out Tim Story, director of Silver Surfer, in the interview. She recounts the time he told her to cry prettier in Silver Surfer.

“I wanted to stop acting,” Alba says. “I hated it. I really hated it.” Actually, it was the lack of acting she hated. “I remember when I was dying in Silver Surfer,” she says, referring to the 2007 Fantastic Four sequel in which she plays a woman who alternates between being invisible and wearing a spandex catsuit. “The director was like, ‘It looks too real. It looks too painful. Can you be prettier when you cry? Cry pretty, Jessica.’ He was like, ‘Don’t do that thing with your face. Just make it flat. We can CGI the tears in.’ And I’m like, But there’s no connection to a human being. And then it all got me thinking: Am I not good enough? Are my instincts and my emotions not good enough? Do people hate them so much that they don’t want me to be a person? Am I not allowed to be a person in my work? And so I just said, ‘F**k it. I don’t care about this business anymore.’ ”

In his defense, no one wants to see a chick cry ugly on a movie screen. That’s my #1 pet peeve during movies, girls crying ugly. It’s right up there with not enough screaming babies in the theater.

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