Emma Stone Talks Working With Woody Allen at ‘Irrational Man’ Los Angeles Premiere

Emma Stone Irrational Man premiere
Todd Williamson/WireImage

Emma Stone spoke with Variety about starring in a second consecutive Woody Allen film at Thursday’s “Irrational Man” Los Angeles premiere at the WGA Theatre in Beverly Hills.

The actress attempted to explain what changed the second time around. “It was different,” she said. “‘Magic in the Moonlight’ felt like this magical, suspended, ‘Midsummer Night’s Dream’ in the south of France, and the cast all got really close.” In “Irrational Man,” on the other hand, “The tone is much darker,” she said.

While Allen did not attend, stars Joaquin Phoenix and Parker Posey joined Stone for the premiere.

Stone said she was drawn back to Allen’s work after reading the script, along with the opportunity to work with Phoenix and Posey. “It felt like a very ‘Woody’ movie,” she said. “I thought the themes he was exploring were totally different than ‘Magic in the Moonlight’ and somehow, he always is kind of exploring similar themes too.”

Posey spoke to the theme of the movie — which centers around a philosophy professor who has a romantic affair with a student — saying that she “had crushes on lots of teachers” because she “wanted to be a good student.” “I was a teacher’s pet,” the actress admitted, saying that when she studied at Georgetown, she took a class with a particularly memorable philosophy professor. “His wife had a baby when I was a student, and he called me, and I was really chuffed by that,” she said.

While Stone and Posey opened up about their experiences, Phoenix made a hard 180-degree pivot on the carpet after taking pictures, avoiding all interviews. Phoenix did, however, take part in some antics before the screening. When Stone was introduced, Phoenix stood up to receive the applause, and when his name was called, the actress returned the favor.

Hakkasan nightclub, one of the premiere’s sponsors, hosted the after-party at its Beverly Hills location. While guests enjoyed complimentary drinks and hors d’oeuvres, the creative team and several stars, including Stone and Posey, ate celebratory macaroons in an enclosed area guarded by a bouncer.

Michael Barker, co-president of Sony Pictures Classics, stepped out to comment on the studio’s long history with Allen. “You’re really supporting his vision,” he said, pointing out that Allen has directed dozens of films, and “Irrational Man” was his seventh with SPC. “His way is a way that tends to succeed more often than not. So you have to trust that. Because for someone like us to assume that we know how to do that is a mistake.”