Diane Kruger has achieved considerable success in her acting career by virtue of being, quite simply, very good at her job.
The German native, 39, has range — having played everyone from Marie Antoinette (“Farewell, My Queen”) to a Texas detective on FX’s “The Bridge” — and she’s shown a propensity for interesting projects rather than paycheck grabs.
Her latest is “The Infiltrator,” starring alongside Bryan Cranston, as they play undercover U.S. Customs agents trying to bring down Pablo Escobar during the 1980s.
amNewYork spoke with her about the film, which is now in theaters, and more.
There’s a lot of rich dramatic material in this story.
It’s definitely my kind of movie. I always love to watch movies like this. It’s a true story, and this Escobar story’s just so big and so happening, it’s definitely a movie I would go see myself.
Your character, Kathy Ertz, spends most of the movie acting, too.
I’m fascinated in general with people who go undercover. To a certain extent, of course, as being an actor you become this person and live in this world for three or six months. But I cannot even begin to understand how you can do that for years at a time.
What can women in Hollywood do to help combat the obvious gender disparities that you’ve been outspoken about in the past?
I think women are more and more outspoken. I think, at the end of the day, it’s up to women to create our own stories. … With movies being superhero and popcorn movies, there’s a whole other opportunity for us on television and the other outlets to tell stories and have a different platform.
It’s tough to become a big name if you don’t have the same opportunities.
In every movie, it’s the man gets cast first and the women are interchangeable. … Our careers are not being developed as [are] male leads, because there’re just not that many female-driven movies. That’s what the problem is. I’m very well aware that I’m not Brad Pitt, but maybe if I had gotten the opportunity to do half as many movies as he did, I would be.
You live in Paris and Los Angeles and recently bought a one-bedroom apartment in East Village. Why there?
I feel like it’s still a little gritty. When I used to live here, you did not come there at all. It was a dangerous place for a girl to go by yourself. It’s been gentrified a lot. It’s harder and harder to get a sense of a neighborhood. I love the West Village, but it feels too manicured to me.