Thandie Newton panicked about buying a cat when she discovered she was pregnant.
The British actress is expecting her third child with husband Ol Parker and has recalled how she instantly reacted to the news. Thandie admits worrying about her two daughters, her age, diet and pets as it sank in.
“After a speedy calculation, my resulting brain-static went something like this: ‘I’m 40! Ripley’s going to be 13 years older than her sibling? We just got a f**king cat! We’ll have to have another one so it won’t feel like an only child?? Ol is shooting in India when the baby’s due! I’ll be 41!? Nico (aged nine) still sleeps in our bed! Can I still fly to Congo on my due date? I ate mussels and drank red wine all last week! What about the f**king cat?’” Thandie told British magazine Stylist.
The 41-year-old star’s thoughts then turned to work. She was committed to shooting the second season of her TV show Rogue, in which she stars as undercover police officer Grace Travis.
Thandie realized she would have to let show bosses know about her pregnancy, but was determined the news wouldn’t affect her involvement in Rogue – or her wardrobe.
“I had two options; to withdraw from the show (already in pre-production) which would have meant the show collapsing, or, commit to the shoot regardless – which would take me into my last trimester. I was adamant that I didn’t want my character to be pregnant, as it didn’t suit the arc of the story,” she explained. “My agent also reassured me that both Claire Danes and Anna Paquin had shot their TV shows long into their (first) pregnancies. So – it was all going to work out just fine, wasn’t it? I might even be able to still wear the eel slick leather trousers I slid into on the first season?”
However, Thandie’s optimism suffered a serious setback when she gained more weight than she expected.
“Sweet denial… eight years since my second baby, the combination of being 41, and having done this twice before means my body has ‘generously’ anticipated the months ahead. I am six months along, and huge,” she said. “We are near enough to finishing for me to be able to chuckle at my naivety in thinking this was going to be anything other than crazy bonkers mayhem, with a waddling lead actress at the centre, who has most definitely not been wearing spray-on leather trousers.”
Thandie has had to make some compromises while juggling her pregnancy with shooting the show. She became “devilishly cunning” at using props to hide her blossoming figure and relied heavily on her assistant Rosie to get her through times when she was “raging” and “sobbing”.
Despite facing some challenging situations, Thandie is embracing her third pregnancy and feels stronger than ever.
“Pregnancy does that for me – roots me to my core, settles me at the centre of everything – physically but also emotionally, psychologically and spiritually,” she said. “I’m more alive to the present, more in tune. I’m growing a baby in my body – beat that!”
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