The debate over who is “the real villain” of The Devil Wears Prada continues…
Film lovers on Twitter can never agree on who to hate most in the classic film. The line of thinking goes that while Meryl Streep’s cruel boss character, Miranda Priestly, is the assumed bad guy, the real villain is actually Andy’s boyfriend Nate (played by Adrian Grenier), who is whiny and unsupportive of her demanding new role.
In honor of the 15th anniversary of the iconic movie, Entertainment Weekly released an oral history of The Devil Wears Prada in which the Entourage star addresses the argument once and for all. He admitted:
“When that whole thing first came out, I couldn’t get my head around it. I didn’t understand it. Perhaps it was because I wasn’t mature as a man, just as Nate probably could’ve used a little growing up. I was just as immature as him at the time, so I couldn’t see his shortcomings, but, after taking time to reflect and much deliberation online, I can realize the truth in that perspective.”
He went on:
“Nate hadn’t grown up, but Andy had…. she needed more out of life, and she was achieving it. He couldn’t support her like she needed because he was a fragile, wounded boy…. on behalf of all the Nates out there: Come on! Step it up!”
Surprisingly, Andy herself had a different take. Anne Hathaway told the outlet:
“I don’t think everybody’s being completely honest with themselves about their own poutiness. Nate was pouty on his birthday because his girlfriend wasn’t there! In hindsight, I’m sure he wishes he made a different choice, but who doesn’t? We’ve all been brats at different points. We all just need to live, let live, and do better!”
Fair enough! We mean — if you were dating a workaholic, wouldn’t you wish they had a better work/life balance, too? Or feel a little bit of resentment towards their tyrannical boss? Nate was only human!
Miranda was human too, though, and director David Frankel and writer Aline Brosh McKenna that was formidable, powerful, and flawed rather than your run-of-the-mill antagonist. But the film apparently hit several roadblocks due to the real-life inspiration for Miranda: Anna Wintour. McKenna had “enormous trouble finding anyone in the fashion world” who would talk to her for fear of being blackballed by the Vogue editor. Frankel recalled:
“The Met Ball meant that the Metropolitan Museum wanted nothing to do with us; because of Fashion Week, Bryant Park . Even these iconic apartment buildings we saw as possibilities for Miranda’s apartment, the co-op boards wouldn’t let us in. We went for weeks being unable to secure locations!”
He later added:
“There were no designers of note who would appear in the film. They just didn’t want to incur the wrath of Anna. Some of them showed us their showrooms or gave us notes on the authenticity of the script; they just didn’t want to participate. Initially, Pat had a hard time getting clothes out of a lot of the designers. I think it was Prada that helped her break the ice and said that Anna’s not going to be upset.”
Could it be that Anna Wintour was the REAL villain all along? Well, her enormous influence didn’t stop the film from being made, so we’re just grateful to be celebrating 15 years all of the iconic looks and amazing zingers that make up The Devil Wears Prada.
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