Posted on Jul 24, 2012 Written by Graces

Having grown up under difficult circumstances in Florida with a family that had a “crazy history,” Leighton Meester began living a very different kind of life as Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl. It wasn’t just getting to live in New York, it was also being able to have financial stability – something she had never experience during her entire life. “I haven’t had the easiest life but I grew up feeling loved and even though we struggled for money it makes you want to work harder to realise your dreams,” Meester explains. “I’m a happy person. I could be happy working as a florist. But I’m also lucky that as an actress I’m doing something that I love and lets me lead a good life.”

Now that Gossip Girl is shooting it’s sixth and final season, the 26-year-old Meester is hopeful that her film career will be equally successful. Over the last few years, she’s begun to shed her posh TV persona with roles in “Country Strong,” “The Roommate,” and “Monte Carlo.” Her new film, THAT’S MY BOY, takes Meester in an entirely new direction as part of a typically manic Adam Sandler comedy. Shot in and around Boston and Cape Cod, the movie centres around a deadbeat dad (Sandler) and his opportunistic decision to re-enter his wealthy son’s (Andy Samberg) life on the eve of his wedding to his dream girl (Meester).

It’s the first time that Leighton has had the chance to test her acting mettle in a wacky comedy, but she more than holds her own against Sandler and Samberg and admits to having had “such an incredibly fun time on the set.” Meester was born into a family where both her mother and father had brushes with the law. She remains close to her father but has cut off all contact with her mother after being forced to go to court last year when her estranged mother demanded money from her .

Leighton grew up in Florida and moved to New York after a talent scout saw her at a models convention in Atlanta and signed her to a contract when she was 10. She remained in New York with her mother until she was 14 and she moved to L.A. to work in TV and film before moving back to New York when she won the role of Blair Waldorf on Gossip Girl.

Meester recently returned from vacations in Brazil with a group of friends and a family trip with her father and various cousins in Thailand. In person, Leighton is even more beautiful than her glamorous GG alter ego, wearing little make-up and a floral print summer dress. As her role in Country Strong revealed, Meester is also a talented singer and she recently concluded a 5-city U.S. tour with her band, Check in the Dark.

Q: Leighton, an Adam Sandler comedy is a big change-of-pace from your Gossip Girl world. How comfortable were you doing this kind of a comedy?

MEESTER: I loved doing this. I play a girl who you think is very sweet and wonderful at the beginning and then she gets crazier as the story evolves. Adam has a terrific way of creating the kind of atmosphere where everyone is very comfortable on the set and you’re able to improvise your lines and jokes if the situation warrants it. It was a great experience for me and a lot of fun.

Q: What interested you in this kind of a film?

MEESTER: The biggest selling point for me was working with Adam and his crew and this really raunchy, over-the-top screenplay. It was so funny. There were lots of funny, weird, dirty jokes, cussing, and all of that. I’ve seen almost all of Adam’s movies and I wasn’t sure of how far I could go with the jokes and he would keep telling me to go for it. That was the kind of wonderful encouragement he would give you to take your character to its limit.

Q: How do you keep a straight face during the shooting?

MEESTER: You don’t. We were always cracking up during the shoot and even though my character keeps more of a straight face it was so hard sometimes and Adam and Andy (Samberg) would deliberately try to make me crack up with an odd gesture or expression.

Q: Adam Sandler’s comedies are known for being over-the-top. Is he that way in person?

MEESTER: No. Adam is incredibly polite and soft-spoken. His comic side is this wilder extension of his playful nature but he works very hard and is such a gentleman when you get to know him. Adam has totally changed my perspective about him…I grew up watching his movies like Happy Gilmour and Punch-Drunk Love. His performance in (Punch Drunk) is so inspiring and I admire that versatility. He has a rare ability to connect with his audience. He’s also so nice on the set and he’s always calling you and asking you how things are going. He is such a genuinely good man. • Read full story »

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Posted on Jun 14, 2012 Written by Graces

The lovely Leighton Meester returns to the Studio, this time to tell us all about another big screen venture, “That’s My Boy”! Not surprisingly, she comes armed with many crazy behind-the-scenes stories from the set, including Andy Samberg’s rap wars with Will Forte. Leighton also gives us the scoop on her second career as a songstress, and then she describes for us what a Subway sandwich named after her would look like! Hosted by Nikki Novak.

Source: Young Hollywood

 
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Posted on Jun 14, 2012 Written by Graces

Choice Summer Movie Star: Female
Scarlett Johansson, “The Avengers”
Leighton Meester, “That’s My Boy”
Kristen Stewart, “Snow White & The Huntsman”
Emma Stone, “The Amazing Spider-Man”
Charlize Theron, “Snow White & The Huntsman” and “Prometheus”

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Posted on Jun 7, 2012 Written by Graces

Leighton Meester just won her legal war against her mom — after the “Gossip Girl” star sued her last year … claiming the woman diverted money Leighton had sent to her little brother  …  and she spent it on things like plastic surgery, Botox, and hair extensions.

TMZ broke the story — Leighton filed the lawsuit claiming her little brother has serious medical problems … so she sent home $7,500 a month to help cover his expenses.

Leighton’s mom, Constance Meester, tried convincing the judge Leighton had promised to take care of her and that’s why she spent the cash.  But the judge pooh-poohed mom’s claims, ruling there was no such agreement.

Leighton actually didn’t sue to recover any money from her mom — she just wanted the judge to make her mother go away.

Mission accomplished.

Source: TMZ

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Posted on Jun 5, 2012 Written by Graces

With a new movie out, an album in the works and another season of Gossip Girl to wrap, Leighton Meester drops the Blair Waldorf persona we know and love to reveal someone even better: a wisecracking, food-loving sweetheart with a wee best friend and a glamorous solution for bedhead.

Leighton Meester has been to the top of the Empire state Building twice—once to the walled-in tourists-only Observation Deck, and once to the very, very top, where, she reports, there are these really low ledges, and you just stand there and take in the view while holding on to hooks.

“You mean: You, the sky and give or take 1,250 feet between your head and the pavement?” I ask.

“It’s unbelievable!” she insists.

Happily for me, today we’re only headed to the Observation Deck. It’s a clear, sunny afternoon, and we’re tooling around Manhattan visiting the sites of several famous only-in-New York movie scenes. Our itinerary might be a little gimmicky—Iconic New York Actress Pays Homage to Previous Iconic New York Actresses—but Meester doesn’t seem to mind and has come dressed for the job in a loose gray Isabel Marant sweatshirt, J Brand skinny jeans (“More like jeggings,” she jokes), dark hair tucked inside an Autumn Cashmere floppy knit hat (“My hair is a rat’s nest when I wake up—but I slip this thing on and people think it’s a fashion statement!”), black flats (“In case we end up walking a lot”). Picture her Gossip Girl alter ego Blair Waldorf kidnapped from the Upper East Side, deported to the East Village and forced to shop at Urban Outfitters.

Which, as it happens, is a step up from Meester’s pre-Waldorf self. “My friend says that before the show I dressed like a homeless person,” she says. “I used to buy everything at garage sales. It was hard to give up! I’d be like, ‘But this crazy sweater is amazing, and it only cost 25 cents!’ ” Waldorf’s influence hasn’t turned her into a fashionista by any stretch—off-hours, Meester is the low-key, comfort-first type who does most of her shopping online or when traveling, and she only uses a stylist for red-carpet events. “I’ve learned from Blair, though. Now I like to pepper in something designer”—she tugs at her Isabel Marant sweatshirt—“with my usual stuff.”

When we step off the elevator, the high-speed winds tear my carefully done chignon into a whirling catastrophe. I attempt to say something witty and end up with a mouthful of hair (my own). As we push through the crowds for a gawking spot, the serenely be-hatted and hair-not-flying-anywhere Meester affects a posh, old-timey accent and quotes from the 1957 classic An Affair to Remember—“The Empire State Building is the closest thing to heaven in this city!” (In the movie, a besotted Cary Grant waits dejectedly on the Observation Deck for his presumptive bride-to-be, Deborah Kerr, oblivious that she’s a no-show because—sorry to ruin it for you—she’s been hit by a car.) As we take in the city arrayed below, searching out our favorite buildings (Meester’s is the Flatiron), her tone quickly morphs from self-consciously campy to wistful—the first of many such mood shifts I’ll witness. “That heart-racing feeling!” she says of Grant’s plight. “You want him to know what she’s going through.” As I’m absorbing this, she grabs my shoulders and cries, “Make it shine like the top of the Chrysler Building!” I look at her uncomprehendingly. “That one’s fromAnnie,” she explains, and it dawns on me I’m traveling with both a glamorous movie star and a straight-up film geek. • Read full story »

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