- September 2002

 Stiles & Substance 

Seventeen's September covergirl Julia Stiles is a normal college kid who just happened to make $4 million for her latest flick, A Guy Thing. But she still hates to spend money on clothes. Here's more from Julia.

What's it like to be on stage performing Twelve Night in New York City?

I am so happy to be doing this play. It is such a rewarding experience. It's so fun and I love Shakespeare. But because I love it so much, I want to be really good. I go through these certain days where, I am like, "I am going to suck!" (laughs)

What made you decide to go to college?

It makes me really happy; I enjoy it a lot. I also think it makes me a better actress. It just teaches you to think differently. It teaches you to analyze, and especially being an English major, it teaches you to interpret characters and story telling. It also forces you to learn how to express your ideas in class, and in the papers that you write. You have to interact with people as peers. I think it's a good lesson in being a person.

What do you do in your spare time? Are you still playing soccer?

Yes. I started playing when I was in junior high, so it was like the only thing that I got praise for and encouraged. You know every other sport I played, like basketball, I was terrible. Soccer's great because for two hours, you focus on something very specific, scoring a goal (laughs). You don't think about anything else and you can be aggressive and not worry about people taking offense to that. There is just something about the endorphins, you just get a high off the endorphins. It taught me a lot about focus. That's why I like acting, too. You don't have to think about anything but your task at that moment. Just say your lines the way it should be, or scoring a goal, or whatever.

Are you close with your family?

Yeah, very close. It's a very Irish-Italian family where it's almost too close. My friends get shocked at the things I tell my parents. I had a friend over at dinner and we were talking about farting at the dinner table, like just not polite stuff at all, and my friends were like, "You guys can talk about farting at the dinner table? I don't talk about farting with my parents!"

Did you read seventeen?

I totally did when I was 17. And even younger then that. I started reading it when I was like 12, cause I wanted to be older. It has changed a lot too. I read an article in it recently and it has gotten a lot more girl-powerish, which is a good thing. Much more inspiring.

What role do you want to play next?

I just want to continue challenging my self, and playing characters that I never played before in types of movies that I have never done before. I just learn a lot about myself that way. Now, I am so obsessed with the stage, to the point where it scares me into thinking that I want to do theatre for the rest of my life


Julia likes Belle and Sebastian, the White Stripes, the Eels and The Strokes. "I am definitely back into the Rolling Stones and that sort of thing."

She loves to go out dancing with her friends. "I really like places that have '80s nights."

Julia doesn't like to spend a ton of money shopping. "I used to really like thrift stores, but it's too much effort to find good stuff now. It's not as cheap anymore. I used to find bargains, and I would find really cool, cute, interesting, neat things, but not anymore."

Originally published at - Posted on September 2002