UPDATE: On Saturday, May 16, at a Cannes Film Festival press conference, Blanchett responded to last week's reports about her "relationships with women." She focused on the fact that in 2015, the response to her "sexuality" should be "who cares?"
Cate Blanchett has finessed the art of storytelling on the big screen. Just watch The Aviator (2004) or Blue Jasmine (2013), two films for which the Australian actress won Academy Awards. Her performances are compelling, as the actress has a way of making her characters' experiences feel visceral. Blanchett has an innate ability to capture audience attention the moment she appears onscreen, entrancing us to discover the fate of her characters. To do so, she must adapt, connect, and truly understand the background of the person she is portraying. And now, with Carol, a new film based on Patricia Highsmith's novel, The Price of Salt, we expect Blanchett's reputation to hold true as she identifies with her latest character more than we may have previously known. In the highly anticipated British-American romantic drama, which took 15 years to develop, Blanchett plays Carol Aird, a married women in the midst of separating from her husband when she embarks on an affair with a young woman, Therese Belivet (Rooney Mara), who works as a department store clerk. When asked by Variety if this was her first role playing a lesbian, Blanchett opened up about her personal history. Has she had past relationships with women? "Yes. Many times," she said. The conversation continued, and while Blanchett was reluctant to share details about those relationships, she tied her perspective to that of her latest character Carol, who never formally "comes out" as a lesbian. "I never thought about it," she said in reference to labeling sexual orientation and how she envisioned her role. "I don't think Carol thought about it," she continued. We're always up for a chilling love story — one filled with emotion and insight, starring beautifully intelligent and talented women. It seems Carol will be just that. (Variety)