Semi-famous actress dumps on the 'Burgh
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One of the mysteries of Pittsburgh that actress Sienna Miller will explore while in town making the movie "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh" is how to endure the wrath of her host city after insulting it in a national publication.
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In an article in Rolling Stone magazine that hits newsstands today, Miss Miller refers to the town as something that starts with "sh" and rhymes with "Pittsburgh."
"Can you believe this is my life?" Miss Miller later asks Rolling Stone contributing editor Jenny Eliscu, over a plate of garlic-parmesan Buffalo wings at a Pittsburgh hotel bar. "Will you pity me when you're back in your funky New York apartment and I'm still in Pittsburgh? I need to get more glamorous films."
The 24-year-old fashion trendsetter and star of "Layer Cake," "Casanova" and "Alfie" plays the debutante in the screen adaptation of Michael Chabon's novel, which is set in Pittsburgh in the 1980s.
Ms. Eliscu interviewed Miss Miller, the girlfriend of "Alfie" co-star Jude Law, in Pittsburgh in mid-September.
"When I was writing that," said Ms. Eliscu, "I thought, 'Ooh, people in Pittsburgh are not gonna be stoked about that.' "
"I think obviously we have a great town, and I disagree with her comments," said Mayor Luke Ravenstahl, having been briefed on the Rolling Stone story. "She was probably in the more elite facilities in and around the city. I think if she would have interacted with regular Pittsburghers, she would have found differently. She needs to get out with us regular folks."
Miss Miller had, in fact, been holed up for weeks in a Pittsburgh hotel room. Ms. Eliscu wouldn't say which one, because Miss Miller will keep the room until "Mysteries" wraps Oct. 17.
A spokeswoman from the office of Miss Miller's publicist said the actress has been off the set for a couple of weeks and staying at her home in London. She returns to the set today.
"Her routine is living out of the hotel room and going to the hotel bar to smoke and have drinks," said Ms. Eliscu. "I went to her room. It was in disarray, stuff on the floor -- there's only so much you can do to clean up a hotel room when you're there for a long time."
Ms. Eliscu writes that Miss Miller dropped the derogatory remark over a "goblet of cheap pinot grigio."
"In the course of talking," she said, "I asked what one does in Pittsburgh on a night off. She said there wasn't much for a gal to do alone in Pittsburgh. I don't think she'd been going out much. They're shooting mostly at night, so she's on the night shift and I don't think she'd had much time off."
In the article, Ms. Eliscu refers to Miss Miller as a less-troubled version of model Kate Moss, "a bohemian vixen who wants to rock your gypsy soul." Miss Miller is back with Mr. Law, even after their breakup over his affair with his children's nanny -- dubbed Nannygate by the press.
Ms. Eliscu writes that Miss Miller admitted to some "destructive qualities."
Perhaps they include a lack of discretion -- she apparently knew the Rolling Stone story would run while she was still living in, well, the town with the rhyming name.
"She did call it [that word]," said Ms. Eliscu. "Her attitude was, it's hard to be stuck in one place that's not home and living in a hotel room. She's more of a cosmopolitan kind of gal, so she'd rather room in a city like London or New York."
Miss Miller was in Pittsburgh in November when she toured The Andy Warhol Museum with Guy Pearce, who stars with her in the upcoming "Factory Girl." He plays Warhol and she's his protege, Edie Sedgwick.
Ms. Eliscu said she didn't know if Miss Miller had returned to The Warhol or partied at any of the city's nightspots. But she doesn't share the actress's impressions of the town.
"I really was not there long enough," she said, "but it was a pretty ride and the people were friendly."
Miss Miller's employers, the producers of "The Mysteries of Pittsburgh," like the city well enough to have just launched another film here. "Smart People," starring Dennis Quaid, Rachel Weisz and Thomas Hayden Church, will begin shooting Nov. 6.
First Published October 6, 2006 12:00 am