Kate Winslet may be an Academy Award-winning film actress, but improvising on the fly in front of a live studio audience still proved daunting when she was center-stage on SNL in 2004.
The actress took some time this week to reminisce on one of the more stressful moments of her career, admitting the beloved comedy sketch program almost had the best of her.
The Titanic star’s telecast, as it happened, fell just one week following Ashlee Simpson’s now-infamous lip-synching catastrophe, which Winslet said made the set a ‘hotbed of anxiety.’
‘Hotbed of anxiety’: Kate Winslet took some time this week to reminisce on one of the more stressful moments of her career, when she was asked to host Saturday Night Live in 2004
Winslet, who turned 45 this week, spoke about her experience on the NBC sketch show during a virtual chat as part of the Hamptons International Film Festival’s A Conversation with… series on Thursday.
‘When I did SNL I was on the week after Ashlee Simpson. I was the next show after. Let me tell you, that studio was just a hotbed of anxiety,’ Kate recollected.
‘There’s this thing of the opening monologue and they kept saying to me, “Kate, we’re so sorry, we just don’t have it yet, give us a moment,”‘ she continued.
Gaffe: Many can remember when Ashlee was discovered to be using a backing track during her 2004 SNL debut
Memories: ‘When I did SNL I was on the week after Ashlee Simpson. I was the next show after. Let me tell you, that studio was just a hotbed of anxiety,’ Kate recalled
‘It gets to Friday when we have the dress rehearsal – no opening monologue. I’m literally sh**ting myself,’ the Reader actress went on.
‘[I said,] “Guys please just make something up, let me make something up, just tell me what I’m doing!” They go, “Can you tap dance?”‘
It was then that Winslet said that she in fact could tap, which led to her cramming a three-hour rehearsal of a tap dancing and singing routine just before the show’s dress rehearsal.
Pulling it together: The experience led to Kate cramming a three-hour rehearsal of a tap dancing and singing routine just before the show’s dress rehearsal
‘And then we’re recording the show, live!’ Kate concluded, incredulously.
Ashlee quite famously walked off the stage during the second of her SNL performances in October of 2004, when the vocal track to her song Pieces Of Me began playing in the background.
Simpson danced for 30 seconds before leaving the stage entirely, with many suggesting that the flub led to the demise of her musical career.
Winslet, meanwhile, also recently took stock of some other passages in her career, specifically her decision to work with two controversial film directors.
Taking stock: Winslet, meanwhile, also recently took stock of some other passages in her career, specifically her decision to work with two controversial film directors; seen in 2018
Kate worked with Woody Allen on his 2017 film Wonder Wheel, while she appeared opposite Christoph Waltz, Jodie Foster, and John C. Reilly in Roman Polanski’s Carnage in 2011.
Both Allen and Polanski have long been involved in cases charging them with alleged sexual abuse, and other crimes.
The Revolutionary Road star spoke out rather frankly in last month’s Vanity Fair about her appearances in their films, saying, ‘What the f*** was I doing working with Woody Allen and Roman Polanski?
‘It’s unbelievable to me now how those men were held in such high regard, so widely in the film industry and for as long as they were. It’s f***ing disgraceful. And I have to take responsibility for the fact that I worked with them both.’
‘What the f*** was I doing?’: Winslet now says she ‘regrets’ working with the likes of Roman Polanski (pictured) on his 2011 film Carnage, along with Woody Allen for 2017’s Wonder Wheel