Kristen Stewart's latest film gave her a new perspective on gender politics and stereotypes.
The 29-year-old actress stars in J.T. Leroy, a film based on the true story and memoir of Savannah Knoop, who famously pretended to be J.T., the made-up celebrated literary persona of her sister-in-law. ET's Katie Krause sat down with Stewart and her co-star, Laura Dern, as they opened up about the incredible story and learning about gender.
"It's a learning process," Stewart explained. "I think it's easy to get a little overwhelmed by the complexity of it -- of that question -- and how unique it is to every person. But I think if you care about other people and you're willing to just take a little bit of time and go 'What do you want me to call you?'"
"You may look like one thing to me and having grown up used to the idea that. OK you're a boy, you're a girl, cool. He, she, whatever. Maybe give it one more second and learn [more about] each other," she continued. "That's what I love about this movie, is it's not presumptuous. In fact, it's leaning so far into the vast depths of our complexities, which I think is really beautiful."
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Kristen Stewart and Diane Kruger Get Intimate in 'J.T. LeRoy' Sneak Peek (Exclusive Clip)
Stewart also had the pleasure of working with Knoop -- who co-wrote the script -- everyday while on the set. "I've played a couple characters based on real people in the past, some of which I was able to speak to, some I was not," she explained. "In this case, having her so close and being able to enlighten people to sort of that perspective and experience is interesting because it's also a story that a lot of people feel close to."
The actress has previously been open about gender norms and her sexuality. She was in a relationship with Robert Pattinson for several years, before dating singer St. Vincent and later model Stella Maxwell after that. She's currently dating stylist Sara Dinkin.
"I’ve been deeply in love with everyone I’ve dated," Stewart told Harper's Bazaar U.K. in September. "Did you think I was faking it? I’ve always really embraced a duality. And really, truly, believed in it and never felt confused or struggling. I just didn’t like getting made fun of."
See more in the video below.
J.T. Leroy is now in theaters, On Demand and available via Digital HD on April 26.