‘I Have the Lowest of the Low Sense of Humor’

In this week’s upcoming issue of PARADE, Anne Hathaway talks to Jeanne Wolf about retaining her good-girl image. Below, the actress talks more about keeping odd hours and her new film, Get Smart.

Anne Hathaway talks about keeping a straight face — and a clean mouth — on the set of Get Smart

Anne Hathaway admits to getting a little punchy when her schedule calls for all-night film shoots. Currently, she’s in Boston filming Bride Wars with Kate Hudson — and going to bed when the rest of the world is getting up. It’s a new experience for the young actress — snoozing while the sun shines.

And then there’s her day job, making the rounds with her Get Smart cast mates, Steve Carell, Duane “The Rock” Johnson and Alan Arkin. The movie, based on the TV series, opens June 20.

How do you like this “filming all night” business?  Has world travel prepared you for jet lag and time changes?

“I have never really had to do it before. I always thought that, in one day, you can bounce back. And that sort of brain dead feeling lingers for a few days. For longer than you expect, you’re not quick. It’s not even that I’m particularly quick to begin with, but all of a sudden it’s just like, ‘Oh, that’s right. I’m mid-sentence and you’re just waiting on my word. OK.'”

Talking about Get Smart, Steve and even Duane Johnson told me that the most important thing was to play it straight. When you’re working around these funny people, isn’t that hard?

“Oh, you have no idea. There are a few shots in the movie that you can tell I am about to go. And it’s funny the things that you wind up doing to keep yourself from laughing. You just all of a sudden become very interested in your wristwatch. Or you suddenly just need to bite a knuckle, but like pretend that you’re doing it in anger. There were definitely moments like that.” Any memorable moments?

“The best day for me was when Steve lost it, because Steve never goes, ever. He can keep a straight face with anyone except Alan Arkin. Steve adores Alan, rightly so. I adore Alan. And Alan was just killing it this one day with this run of word play. And the way he was delivering it was so funny. I’m off camera. I am literally just holding my sides, trying not to laugh audibly. And Steve just goes. And it was a very nice moment. I think we all relaxed.”

With that group, did the humor ever get raunchy on the set?

“The variations–the dirty, filthy variations that Steve Carell came up with for some of the lines. There would be days that I was digging my nails into my palm to keep from laughing. So funny.”

Between Carell and Arkin you could learn some new expressions.

“And Duane, too. Duane is just as filthy as anybody else. Don’t let the whole smile, politician handshake fool you. Duane is amazing.”

What would they say about you? Were you ladylike, or did you join right in?

“I think they would cop to my filth. I have the lowest of the low sense of humor. I laugh at bodily function humor, things like that. It’s terribly sophomoric, but it gets me every time. I’m a huge Monty Python fan. When something strikes me funny, it’s messy, snot flying, tears everywhere. And that’s just me laughing.”

Agent 99 isn’t afraid of a fight. Did you do your own stunts for the film?

“I bled for this film. Really, though, I did. I got into an accident on set. And I had to have 15 stitches. We were just doing a scene. I had to kick a Russian spy in the chest, as one does. And a bar that shouldn’t have been there was there. I was holding onto another bar, and as I lifted my knees up to my chest to kick, I accidentally hit the bar that shouldn’t be there.”

“My shin split open and I had to have 15 stitches. I try not to wimp out. In this case, I could see my shinbones. And I was kind of like — I knew we had one more shot to get, so I turned to the director. I was like, ‘If I have Extra Strength Tylenol, I could probably do the shot.’  And the script supervisor, my onset dresser and my makeup artist all came up to me. And they were just like, ‘You get a plastic surgeon and you sew up your legs. And you finish working right now.’ So I was trying to continue with it. But in that one, I was overruled.”

Were you surprised that Meryl Streep (Hathaway’s Devil Wears Prada co-star) could be so hilarious?

“Well, one of the things that I recall very clearly was, at the beginning of Prada, me being so freaked out and, I don’t know, going on and on about art or something and Meryl just kind of smiling and placating me. And she said, ‘Oh, it will just be so much fun!’  And she just blew that movie wide open. I always remember that. So at the start of this movie with Kate Hudson, I said that to myself. ‘You know what? Maybe this one will be fun.’ It’s about finding that blend.”