Directors Come to Keira Knightley's Rescue After "Begin Again" Director Knocks Her

Anthony Harvey/Getty Images for BFI(NEW YORK) — Keira Knightley has a more than a few hit films and a couple of Oscar nominations to her credit, but she’s also picked up one critic along the way.

Her Begin Again director, John Carney, tells the British newspaper the Independent that he became “disenchanted” with the model-turned-actress after working with her on the 2013 film, in which she starred as a young singer/songwriter.

“I think the real problem was that Keira wasn’t a singer and wasn’t a guitar player and it’s very hard to make music seem real if it’s not with musicians. And I think the audience struggled a little bit with that in Begin Again,” Carney recalls.

“And as much as I tried to make it work, I think that she didn’t quite come out as a guitar-playing singer-songwriter,” he continues. 

The Irish filmmaker and former musician also notes Keira, “has an entourage that follow her everywhere, so it’s very hard to get any real work done.”

Carney’s takeaway from the experience: “I learned that I’ll never make a film with supermodels again.” 

For the record, two filmmakers who previously worked with the actress took to Twitter to defend her. Mark Romanek, the director of 2010′s Never Let Me Go, was first to post, and was quickly supported by Lorene Scafaria, the writer/director behind Seeking a Friend for the End of the World, the 2012 Steve Carrell dramedy.

“My experience with #keiraknightley was utterly spectacular on every level,” posted Romanek.”I have no clue what this guy is talking about.” He added, presumably of Carney, “#arrogantsh**head.” 

“I agree with Mark. Keira was a joy to work w/. Present & easy & really, really good at her job. Just lovely,” Scafaria added.

Knightley co-stars with Will Smith and Kate Winslet in the drama Collateral Beauty, opening nationwide in December.

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