Funnily enough, Mara didn’t originally envision herself in the role of the girl with the pipes, and first time director Radnor didn’t see her in the film at all. “We met for breakfast and had such a great conversation and yet he still was, like, ‘Listen, I don’t know if you’re right for this movie … but we can be friends,’” she recounts, laughing. Flash forward three weeks, Mara — visiting her home in N.Y., where the movie is set — gets a missed call from Radnor. “Hi Kate Mara, do you want to make a movie with me?” said the message. “And that was it,” Mara chuckles. “It went from ‘You’re not right’ to ‘Of course you’re right, play this other part.’”

Genuinely enraptured by the entire project, only boarding a plane headed to Park City, Utah, to premiere the film with her co-stars could compete with the exhilaration of working on the happthankyoumoreplease set. “I loved every second of it, every second of filming it,” Mara gushes. “Being at Sundance with Malin [Akerman] and Josh and the other actors was such a great experience. We’re such a team, and it really felt like that, and that’s not always the way it is.”

The actress credits Radnor’s own sense of spontaneity, as both a director and an actor, for the film’s unaffected charm. “This movie is one hundred percent Josh,” she says. “There are a bunch of moments that feel so real because we just found them on set that day.”

Winner of the Sundance Festival’s Audience Award, happythankyoumoreplease is an indie alternative to blockbuster romantic comedies of the Valentine’s Day ilk. “When I think of romantic comedies, I think of a certain formula, and I don’t think our movie is easily called a romantic comedy. It’s not quite light enough,” explains Mara. “But I think a lot of people could go see it and find joy in watching it; it’s definitely mainstream enough to get a big audience, but you never know.”


Mainstream success, if not from happythankyoumoreplease, is almost guaranteed to be reaped from this fall’s action adventure period drama, Ironclad, starring Paul Giamatti, James Purevoy, and Jason Flemyng.

Aside from the attraction of working with this particular roster of co-stars, the film piqued Mara’s interest in fashion. “I’ve always wanted to do a medieval film, and work with horses … and just the costumes … as a girl, you just want to be able to wear the costumes and the corset,” she giggles. “Trying to fight in a dress is not the easiest thing.”

The actress’ fondness for the corset translates, in her own closet, to Dolce & Gabanna’s signature bustier dress — of which Mara has 2, 1 in black, the other in cream. A red carpet wonder (remember Vogue’s best dressed list?), Mara “like[s] the classic stuff.” Namely, the designs of Chanel, Chloe, and recently Jason Woo. But it is designer Zac Posen that has Mara’s enduring faith. “If I had to trust somebody to make something blindly, I’d probably go with Zac, because he knows women’s bodies so well,” she says. “I love how structured it is, yet girly.”

Mara’s introduction to Posen is a tale that might, again, point to fame. Or maybe I’m just being nit-picky; perhaps top designers like Zac Posen do periodically offer to dress “regular” women, and have them escort them to the MET Costume Ball as a muse. Just a typical event in the average day of someone “not famous.”


Stylist – Scott Free, The Rex Agency

Hair – Stephen Lewis, Exclusive Artists Management

Makeup – Coleen Campbell, Exclusive Artists Management

Model – Colton Haynes, L.A. Models