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by Joan Brasher
Copyright Christianity Today International
In Raising Helen, Kate Hudson plays a young fashion executive who, after the tragic death of her sister and brother-in-law, takes on the role of guardian of their surviving three children. Faced with the new struggles of quasi-parenthood, Hudson, in playing the character, was learning a bit about the challenges of motherhood. And just in time: Shortly after wrapping up the filming, Hudson learned she was pregnant with her first child, with husband Chris Robinson of the rock group The Black Crowes. Their son Ryder was born in January 2004, and was just three months old when Hudson sat down with members of the religious press—including Christianity Today Movies—for this interview. Was this film destiny for you in a way, to learn about motherhood? Kate Hudson: No, I always wanted to be a mom. But when I read the script it obviously hit home for me, coming at a time when I was thinking about having kids. So it kind of fit in perfectly to my mindset at the time. Did you learn anything? Hudson: Not really. I was playing a character. I learned from my parents. They are my biggest support system. But I did have moments when I was in the mix of the three kids all talking to me at once, and I was thinking, Is this what my life is going to be like this? All this craziness? How has motherhood changed your life? Hudson: It's the most incredible thing … it's overwhelmingly beautiful. And nobody ever tells you how hard it is going to be. But it's amazing. What kind of hard stuff? Hudson: When you're nursing and you're working 18-hour days, that's pretty hard. What was it like working with the kids in the movie? Hudson: It was great. They were so professional and yet, still kids. Abigail [Breslin, who played Bo in Signs] was so adorable and so good. She cried at the drop of a hat. She was so focused. When she had to do what she had to do, she really worked hard at it. And Spencer [Breslin] was hysterical. And Hayden [Panettiere] is at that age that I remember so well—13-ish where you want to be an adult and want to be taken seriously, but people don't treat you like it, so you overcompensate. I heard the kids TP'd your trailer. Hudson: It was hysterical. I've never been TP'd that bad either. It was great. We had so much fun. I'm sure I did retaliate, but I don't remember now what I did. How do you feel about the movie now that you are a mom? Hudson: I just saw it again for the first time since I had the baby, and I'm so happy that I wasn't a mom when I made the movie because it would have been a very different character. It was so much more emotional for me as a mother than it was when I saw it when I was pregnant. I was very emotional. Were you surprised that your love interest in the movie was going to be a member of the Lutheran clergy? Hudson: [Laughter] Yes. But when I found out it was John Corbett, I was pretty happy about it. Do you think he is sexy? Hudson: Absolutely. He is a sexy man of God [quoting from movie]. Was it scary for you to carry the film? Hudson: I didn't really think about it like that. I read the script and I went, Oh, this would be great to play this character. It's rare when you are 24 years old that you get to play characters like that. There's really not that kind of material out there, so when the opportunity comes to do a script like that, it's a no-brainer. More complicated roles come when you are in your mid-30s. In your 20s, it's few and far between. Do you recall being on the set in 1987 when Garry Marshall directed your parents in Overboard? Hudson: He's such a fantastic character, you don't forget him. Overboard was such a family thing, almost like this one, with all the kids. It was a great and memorable experience. How do you feel about where you are in your career right now? Hudson: I have to look at my career and my life like this: When I'm done with a movie, I take the experience, I wipe my hands clean of it and I do what I have to do. I go and I do my job. It's great when I like the film; I love this film. I think it's so timely and as a mom now, it just feels so right. Do you worry about the box office? Hudson: You can't. Hey, if it's a big hit, fantastic. It will be so exciting for me. And if it's not, then it's not. I don't worry about my work because I know how hard I work at it, and I think people in the business know that, and I hope that wouldn't affect my career. Are the paparazzi going too far, with you being a new mom and the wife of a rock star (Chris Robinson of the Black Crowes)? Hudson: Absolutely. It is really, really bad. It's bad that part of your life can't be yours, especially when you are so open to giving whatever. I'm available to discuss anything, but having guys dress up in scrubs to get into the hospital is bad. It's just the nature of celebrity today, unfortunately. Now we have paparazzi going by people's houses. Is it really that interesting? For me, I would think people's work is interesting. I think going to see a film, seeing something make believe and something bigger than life is what is interesting. How has your marriage changed now that you have a baby? Hudson: We are sharing something so gigantic now. I think it's the best we've ever felt being together. Finding time to be alone is hard, but we've been alone for four years. I think the hardest part for me was going from the kind of person I was, to having the baby, to the overwhelming sensation of love that you never knew you had the capability of feeling. Then realizing that your life should change. You have your own production company. What are you working on now? Hudson: We have a lot going on right now. It's been about 2½ years since we started our production company. We've developed a lot of projects. I've got two films almost ready to go, and I'm producing a sitcom called, I Did, I Do, Now What, about a young married couple. Lots of TV. How do you feel about reality TV? Hudson: I am such a sucker for reality television. It's almost like it's so absurd that you can't stop watching it. But I just think it's a phase. People will get over it and shows will get more and more obnoxious and silly, and then you just won't want to watch it anymore. The only two reality television shows I really like are American Idol and Survivor. Would you be interested in starring in your own reality series like The Osbournes? Hudson: Are you out of your mind? Photo © Copyright Touchstone Pictures