Lohan: From Teen Queen to Indie Darling
Actress is older and wiser, just like her latest film rolesLOS ANGELES --
The Robert Altman ensemble film based on the radio show by Garrison Keillor, features Lohan as Lola, the daughter of old-fashioned variety show singer Yolanda Johnson (Meryl Streep). The film's all-star cast also includes Lily Tomlin, Virginia Madsen, Kevin Kline, John C. Reilly, Woody Harrelson and Maya Rudolph.
"I would look at the call sheet and I would just see these actors that I didn't believe were coming onto the set every day," says Lohan, who sings "Frankie and Johnny" in the film. "I was definitely nervous. Everybody was that day on set. And I only rehearsed that song I think three times, and they kept changing it."
The starlet isn't fazed by collaborating with Oscar winners like Streep, who even asked her advice for an upcoming project. "She was getting ready to do 'Devil Wears Prada' after that so she was like, 'I don't know anything about fashion,'" says Lohan, who counts Chanel and Yves St. Laurent among her favorite designers.
Meeting legends is getting to be old hat for her, especially after sitting down with Yoko Ono. Lohan consulted with Ono for another upcoming film, "Chapter 27," in which Jared Leto plays Mark David Chapman, John Lennon's assassin.
"I walked in, and we were wearing almost the same thing -- all black because I was like, 'I need to wear something that Yoko would sanction,'" gushes Lohan. "We went and had sushi and she was so sweet. [The film] has a very touchy subject. I was actually really nervous going into it because I did get death threats and everything. But I love my character. She's just such a genuine fan of John Lennon and Yoko Ono in the film and she's the light in the movie."
Keeping with the assassination theme is "Bobby," Emilio Estevez's ensemble project in which the young actress plays Diane, based on a woman Estevez met who had a surprising reaction when she learned he was making a film about Robert Kennedy's death.
"She grabbed the desk and put her head down and she looked up and tears were welling in her eyes and she was like, 'I was there,'" says the actress. "And it sounds crazy that she actually did this, but she married I think, three or four men that she's known in her life so they didn't have to go to Vietnam. Which was completely inappropriate, God forbid."
At least the next two years of her life have already been mapped out for Lohan, including photographing friend Karl Lagerfeld for Interview magazine, filming "Bill" opposite Aaron Eckhart; playing a woman molested by her stepfather in "Georgia Rule" alongside Jane Fonda and Felicity Huffman, and portraying a modern-day Cyrano for Adrien Brody in "Speechless."
Somewhere in the middle of all this, she'll finally turn 21, the legal age for all the drinking and clubbing that she's supposedly already done. With this milestone looming and all the publicity she'll have to do for her upcoming films, Lohan's resigned to the media scrutiny and gossip that will follow.
"If I've dated as many men as [reports] say I have, then I'd be dead by now," jokes Lohan. "But you come into this industry and you want to be written about to an extent obviously, but you're putting yourself on a place where people are going to put you on a pedestal. And sometimes they build you up to try and take you down but that teaches you to work harder. When I was four years old, my report didn't say, 'I want to be written about as going to Bungalow Eight every night and showing up to set late.' You live and you learn."
One of Lohan's strategies for dealing with the rumors so she can concentrate on work is to dye her naturally red hair. She first went blonde for "Prairie Home," and she's been experimenting with a rainbow of shades since.
"In all these tabloids, people are reading whatever they think is real about me," she explains, "Then it's hard for them to believe I'm playing somebody else in a movie when I look exactly the same. I feel like changing my hair color helps me more. I don't want to wear wigs because then you don't feel like you're the person you're portraying."
When she's not hair color-coding her projects, Lohan escapes the pressures of being in the public eye by hanging out with friends and family.
"Surround yourself with people who are going to treat you as they would if you didn't have your pictures everywhere," she says. "I have a really great family and a great group of people. And I consider myself a pretty humble person. Fame is fame. What is fame?"