Cate Blanchett
J Carter Rinaldi/FilmMagic

The past few months have been a whirlwind for Cate Blanchett, who closed out award season with an Oscar, Golden Globe, a SAG Award and a BAFTA all for her lead actress performance in Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmine.” On June 11, Amy Adams will present her with Women in Film’s Crystal Award for Excellence in Film.

“Cate is the picture of perfection, most global and most graceful,” says WIF topper Cathy Schulman.

For the past six years, Blanchett has primarily focused on theater as she is the co-artistic director of the Sydney Theatre Company. “I think my sense of what’s possible in film has been expanded by such an intense period of working in theater,” she says.

Blanchett continues her work onscreen in Terrence Malick’s “Knight of Cups,” is the voice of Valka in “How to Train Your Dragon 2,” and is in the last installment of “The Hobbit” trilogy. Next year sees the thesp in the Todd Hayes pic “Carol,” based on the novel by Patricia Highsmith, and in Disney’s live-action “Cinderella,” in which she plays the evil stepmother. She says when it comes to getting in character, “you don’t just do it alone.” With the help from costumes, sets and “Cinderella” helmer Kenneth Branagh, whom she calls an “actor’s director,” she was able to get there. “It certainly felt magical on the set,” she says.

“I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I was at university,” Blanchett says. “But one thing I said was that I wanted to travel with my work and, hopefully, earn the respect of my peers, and this is certainly that.”

And as a successful female actress, Blanchett wants equal access for women. “Often I find with female-lead films, that the budgets are smaller and the resulting box office is extraordinary,” she says. “But it would be great if there were more films led by women that had that initial investment, because people want to see stories with women at the center.”

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