Jessica Chastain on Reported Biological Father's Death: Press Attention Was "Difficult"
While Jessica Chastain was promoting her Oscar-nominated turn in Zero Dark Thirty earlier this year, multiple reports surfaced, noting the death of the star's biological father, Michael Monsterio. The quiet, two-time Oscar nominee neither commented on his death to the press, nor did she attend the musician's funeral. In fact, the ravishing redhead remained mum on her late alleged biological father -- until now.
Covering the December issue of Vogue, The actress, 36, says that the attention over Monsterio was "very difficult," adding that there was "no proof of anything." (Chastain reveals that her birth certificate lists no father.) However, the star did have a father-figure growing: Her stepdad Michael Hastey, whom she refers to as "one of the greatest people" in her life. Chastain recalls that when Hastey entered her life, it was the "first time I had felt security."
Credit: VOGUE/Annie Leibovitz
Chastain, who brings her fiery hair, serene, cool stare and calming presence to the fashion bible's cover wearing a gorgeous, mustard yellow Theory by Olivier Theyskens gown, stuns in the full-body shot while she relaxes surrounded by a beautiful aquamarine body of water. The accompanying spread, shot by Annie Leibovitz, reenacts works of art from Gustav Klimt, Vincent can Gogh and Rene Magritte.
The breakout star of 2011's The Help tells the magazine, "Jessica—who I am in my personal life—I’m very shy, I feel very awkward, I don’t feel like a femme fatale at all." Chastain, who has been quietly dating handsome Italian-born French fashion executive Gian Luca Passi de Preposulo for 8 months, has kept her relationship with her beau tightly under wraps. "I have a rule," Chastian told Katie Couric when she discussed the relationship with the show host: "I don't date actors, so he's not in the business, at all."
“She is never guarded, but she is very protective of not having to be an open book,” says Mama executive producer Guillermo del Toro, who worked with Chastain on the 2013 horror movie. Oscar-winning legend Al Pacino, who worked with the ravishing redhead back in 2011 on Salome, even admits, “I don’t know anything about her." The Scarface and Godfather star notes, "I know I loved working with her, I enjoyed her company, we’d go out with her from time to time, but I never really sat down and had a heart-to-heart with her. I don’t know where she goes."
The cover story reveals that Chastain is a morning person and definitely not a club girl -- she wakes up early to go shopping for food "at the local farmer's market, doesn't drink much, and is far more likely to be found at home playing Scrabble with friends, or else catching the latest Michael Haneke movie at the Angelika, than stumbling out of a nightclub at 3:00 a.m."
This elusive quality is something the fashion industry, however, has embraced full-force. Earlier this year, the Manhattan resident secured a fragrance campaign for Yves Saint Laurent's Manifesto perfume. On Nov. 6, the Oscar nom interviewed legendary designer Karl Lagerfeld before a packed auditorium of fashion's biggest stars in NYC -- an intimidating moment even for a versatile, focused star like Chastain. "The Victorians would have loved her," the writer notes about the elegant star.
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