Sienna Miller Reflects on ‘Cathartic’ Experience Playing a Wife Who Has Been Cheated On: ‘Ugly Space That’s Familiar’

Sienna Miller Recalls Cathartic Experience Playing Wife Who Is Cheated On
Sienna Miller at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022. Casey Flanigan/imageSPACE/Shutterstock

Taking inspiration from real life? While reflecting on her role in Netflix’s Anatomy of a Scandal, Sienna Miller seemingly addressed her ex-fiancé Jude Law‘s cheating scandal playing out in the public eye.

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“It was familiar terrain because I’ve experienced some of the things that she experienced. And the feelings were familiar,” Miller, 40, detailed to Elle UK on Monday, April 4, about her character Sophie’s husband being accused of infidelity in a highly publicized way. “[Sophie’s] way of dealing with what’s thrown at her is the absolute antithesis of what my way is. And so, in a kind of twisted, tourism sense, I just wanted to see how it would feel to react differently.”

The model noted that she appreciated the ability to use her past to connect with the role. “I know that sounds weird because you’d think it would be deeply unpleasant to sit in that space. There is something cathartic, I suppose, about spending time in an ugly space that’s familiar,” she added. “And maybe reclaiming it? I don’t know what the psychology of it is. But there is something where maybe you can substitute a memory with something else.”

Miller’s personal life made headlines after she met Law, 49, while working on the 2004 film Alfie. They got engaged later that year. In July 2005, the U.K. native, 49, issued a public apology to Miller for having an affair with his children’s nanny.

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“Following the reports in today’s papers, I just want to say I am deeply ashamed and upset that I’ve hurt Sienna and the people most close to us,” the Holiday star said in a statement to the British Press Association at the time. “I want to publicly apologize to Sienna and our respective families for the pain that I have caused.”

The pair called it quits in 2006 before rekindling their romance three years later. They pulled the plug on their relationship again in 2011.

The American Woman star later opened up about the “public heartbreak” that she had to deal with while performing a play on the West End amid the scandal. “That was one of the most challenging moments I hope I’ll ever have to experience,” Miller told The Daily Best in December 2020. “Because with that level of public heartbreak, to have to get out of a bed let alone stand in front of 800 people every night, it’s just the last thing you want to do.”

The 21 Bridges star continued: “There’s a whole six weeks of that experience that I don’t remember. I have no recollection of it. People who came to see me said we had dinner, and I don’t remember. I was in so much shock over it all. And I’d really just begun. I was only 23. But if you get through that, you feel like you can get through anything.”

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On Monday, the New York native recalled the ups and downs of experiencing fame.

“I was just catapulted into a totally parallel universe, while being in love. There was a lot of magic at that time. At first, it was kind of comical, but very quickly it became insidious and, yeah, scary,” she explained. “And my boyfriend [at the time] had been experiencing it for years and felt, understandably, a lot of hostility towards that kind of attention. So, my initial reaction was the same. I became so litigious, just to try and carve out an existence that I could manage. You’ve seen women implode as a result of that. You can’t hold onto sanity or grounding.”

Since her split from Law, Miller dated actor Tom Sturridge from 2011 to 2015. The duo share 9-year-old daughter Marlowe.

The Golden Globe nominee was later linked to Lucas Zwirner. Us Weekly confirmed that Zwirner, 31, and Miller were engaged in February 2020. They ended their relationship seven months later.

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