Before Hunger Games was released 5 years ago, Jennifer Lawrence knew she was going to be famous.
During The Hollywood Reporter’s annual Power 100 Women in Entertainment breakfast on Wednesday, former Paramount Studios CEO Sherry Lansing presented Lawrence with the award named in her honor — but first, she revealed the first time they met.
“I first met Jennifer over five years ago, and it was at a small dinner party at [studio executive] Michael Burns’ house,” Lansing said. “There were about 12 people there and Michael came over to me and he asked me if I could sit next to Jennifer. He told me he was worried about her. Michael told me that Hunger Games was about to come out and he believed that it was going to be a hugely successful film and he said that Jennifer had absolutely no idea how her life was going to change.”
“As I watched her interact with the other guests, I saw a highly confident woman and I really didn’t think she needed any advice from anyone,” Lansing continued. “But then, Jennifer did something quite remarkable. She turned to me and she said, ‘I know Michael is worried about me, and I know he wanted you to talk to me but please don’t worry about me.’”
Lansing explains, Lawrence told her: “I have a secret. I always knew I was going to be famous, so I am totally prepared for it.”
“In that simple, direct honesty I actually knew everything I needed to know about Jennifer,” Lansing added. “I knew she was a very, very special person and I knew she was going to be more than fine.”
After accepting the award, which is given to woman who have been a pioneer or leader in her industry, Lawrence highlighted the importance of the women who have spoken out against injustice and sexual assault.
“I want to recognize all of the women who stood up to adversity for themselves, and for the good of others with profound dignity, perseverance and strength,” Lawrence said. “It’s not easy to speak out. It’s not easy to face criticism on a global scale. But the fact is I have been given a platform, and I feel that if I don’t use it, then I don’t deserve it.”