August 19th, 2010
05:17 PM ET
Blake Lively’s “Gossip Girl” alter-ego Serena Van der Woodsen is the type of girl who eagerly baits the paparazzi, but Lively herself is far from the type who desires that kind of attention.
So when you see the 23-year-old actress on the September cover of Interview magazine wearing the look of a handcuffed femme fatale, don’t assume she’s as bold as that image.
“I'm actually a very shy person,” Lively told interviewer Ben Affleck in the magazine’s cover story. “That's a big secret, so don't tell.”
Despite the bubbly and charismatic characters she’s played on television and in movies, it was her upbringing that forced the star out of her shell. Lively’s parents brought her to acting classes with them, which she said helped her break out of her comfort zone.
“It's like nature versus nurture: I'm naturally very shy, but I was brought up in a way where I had to get up and get out of that,” Lively said.
The young actress has stayed grounded since making her acting debut at 17 in “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.” Growing up in Burbank, California with a family full of actors showed her how to live a relatively normal life under the spotlight of stardom.
“I don't feel like I ever had any sort of Hollywood upbringing,” Lively said. “So I don't remember there ever being a downside.”
But there's also a clear upside: Free food.
“I actually think that was the reason I got into acting,” she told Affleck, who directed the actress in the upcoming movie “The Town,” in which he also acts, alongside Jon Hamm and “Vicky Cristina Barcelona’s” Rebecca Hall.
Lively plays Krista, a 29-year-old single mother who deals drugs in Boston.
A far cry from the Upper East Side, no?
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