TORONTO (Reuters) - “Gossip Girl” star Blake Lively may be a fashion trendsetter on red carpets but in real life, the lanky blonde prefers to stay home and cook.
Lively, at the Toronto International Film Festival to promote her gritty new drama “The Town,” said she is as far as you can get from her role as rich Manhattan teenager Serena van der Woodsen in the racy TV show “Gossip Girl.”
“People probably assume I’m like my character on ‘Gossip Girl’ because that’s what they see the most,” she said, referring to similarities that include living in New York, going to fashion shows and wearing pretty clothes.
“I love going to amazing events and wearing beautiful clothes and meeting incredible designers, but I don’t like to go to parties,” she told Reuters. “I like to sit at home, cook, watch movies and listen to fabulous music.”
As different as Lively’s real life is from Serena’s, it differs even more from the character she plays in director Ben Affleck’s movie “The Town.”
“I don’t have a baby. I’m not addicted to OxyContin. I’m not a drug mule. I’m not in love with a bank robber,” she said.
Due out in U.S. theaters on Friday, the film sees Lively playing Krista, a promiscuous drug-addicted single mom whose life is intertwined with a group of Boston bank robbers led by Affleck and Jeremy Renner.
Donning a Boston accent to play the role, Lively said she related to Krista’s mix of street smarts and vulnerability. She sought to transform the cheap, boozy character with back-combed hair and skimpy outfits into a character that the audience could sympathize with.
“It’s important to do different characters not to prove myself to other people, but to prove I can do it,” she said.
Lively, who first came on the scene in the 2005 teen hit “Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants,” said she didn’t have plans to pursue acting as a career. Falling in love with acting, she now cites Kate Winslet and Julianne Moore as inspiration.
“I didn’t know what I wanted to do, but I knew it was not acting,” said Lively. “And here I am acting.”
Last year, she played the younger version of the title character in the indie drama “The Private Lives of Pippa Lee.” Next year she’ll star in “Green Lantern”, with Ryan Reynolds playing the title role of the superhero.
Working 15-hour days on “Gossip Girl” and fitting feature films into her spare time means “putting so much of yourself out there to the world to entertain.” Therefore she treasures her privacy that much more.
“What grounds me is: this isn’t my lifestyle, it’s my job,” said Lively.
Editing by Zorianna Kit