Michelle Williams has come a long way since the seemingly carefree days on the TV series, "Dawson's Creek." Now a prominent actress with a Golden Globe nomination for her latest film, "Blue Valentine," the notoriously private Williams opened up about shooting the very emotional movie and her life since Health Ledger's death.
Williams, 30, is currently starring in "Blue Valentine" opposite actor Ryan Gosling which will open this week. It's a complex and heart-wrenching love story about a couple that keeps coming together and falling apart. Williams said she originally read the script almost a decade ago.
"I think I was 21 when I first read it," she said. "Almost a third of my life has been devoted to thinking about making this movie."
She added that she was very pleased with the result.
The film feels almost like a documentary, a look achieved by an unusual film-making method: Williams and co-star Ryan Gosling actually lived in the house used in the movie.
"We were told to make memories basically and then have it as [the characters] Dean and Cindy would," Williams said. "To make a budget, to go grocery shopping, to bake a birthday cake ... go to the Sears family portrait studio ... all that kind of stuff."
The result is an incredibly stunning and powerful film where the actors and their emotions are laid bare -- including erotic scenes of the couple in various stages of love-making and nudity.
Williams who is petite and slender, said that like many other women she is never fully comfortable with how her body looks.
"I mean, I am single, I mean I don't think that this movie isn't exactly like the perfect calling card," she said laughing, then more seriously, "I let myself be far more brave and confident and risk-taking in my work than I ever would be in my life."
When Gosling joined the interview, the two reflected on their intimate connection on camera. Gosling raved about working with Williams, saying she reminds him of a cross between "Bridget Bardot and Clint Eastwood."
"She's like Montana," Gosling said of Williams. "If you want to get somewhere, you gotta, you gotta drive there. You gotta take the time to get there."
Not to be out-done, Williams teased, "He's Christ-like," but then, with clear admiration, "Ryan has this amazing ability to be, I found, to be deeply and utterly and totally inside of his character."
Since filming "Blue Valentine," gossip magazines have been buzzing that the two are dating, which both Williams and Gosling denied through giggles.
"No, we're professionals," Gosling said, then turning to Williams, "I mean is that OK?"
"It's OK," Williams said. "I know he looks like he's lying but he's not."
"I always look like I'm lying," Gosling quipped. "It's just -- that's my face."
Williams was first thrust into the spotlight when she was just a teenager making the hit television series "Dawson's Creek." In the years following she landed roles in a series of high-profile films.
Her break-through moment came in "Brokeback Mountain" which earned her an Oscar nomination. The film also found her falling in love with her co-star the late Health Ledger.
She looked back fondly on making the film with Ledger, saying she was "happy at work." She added that often she doesn't remember filming many of her movies but that she remembers this one, the film where she fell in love.