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Katherine Heigl Talks Grey's Anatomy, Movies, Marriage

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It wouldn't be a Katherine Heigl interview if it didn't involve some level of controversy, now would it? In a lengthy conversation with Vanity Fair, the Emmy-winning actress, who just turned 29, is as outspoken and honest as ever, even when it comes to deriding her own smash hit comedy from 2007 as "a little sexist."

Katherine Heigl says that Knocked Up "paints the women as shrews, as humorless and uptight, and it paints the men as lovable, goofy, fun-loving guys. It exaggerated the characters, and I had a hard time with it, some days. I'm playing such a bitch; why is she such a killjoy? Why is this how you're portraying women? Ninety-eight percent of the time it was amazing, but it was hard for me to love the movie."

Katherine Heigl: Pure Beauty
Katherine Heigl: Beautiful, and speaking her mind, as always.

As for Heigl's Grey's Anatomy character, Dr. Izzie Stevens, who began an affair with her married best friend, Dr. George O'Malley, last season, Katherine became concerned about her character's seemingly uncharacteristic actions:

"That was kind of a big change for Izzie, wasn't it, after she was so up on her moral high ground. They really hurt somebody, and they didn't seem to be taking a lot of responsibility for it. I have a really hard time with that kind of thing. I'm maybe a little too black-and-white about it. I don't really know Izzie very well right now. She's changed a lot. I'm trying to figure her out and keep her real."

Katherine Heigl is well aware of the commercial considerations that often drive such decisions, calling Gizzie (George and Izzie) "a ratings ploy... It was absolutely something that shocked people; it wasn't predictable, and people didn't see it coming. It's our fourth season; there's not a lot of spontaneity left. And business is business; I understand that, but I want there to be some cooperation between the business end and the creative end, so there's some way of keeping it real."

The January Vanity Fair hits newsstands nationally December 11. Follow the jump for more great Katherine Heigl photos and excerpts from this interview ....

ON BEING ASSERTIVE

In her personal life, as many of us know, Katherine Heigl is an assertive, impatient go-getter who quickly tired of waiting for her boyfriend [singer-songwriter Josh Kelley] to propose and demanded to know what his intentions were. She even went and picked out the diamond for her ring. "I'm not really a first-move kind of gal," she says. "I'm one of those women who always thinks it's better to play it cool and keep them wanting more, but I really threw myself at him. I broke the rules."

  • Katherine Heigl: Vanity Fair
  • Upside Down

ON HER UPCOMING MARRIAGE TO JOSH KELLEY

Katherine Heigl says she doesn't have any "grand illusions about marriage. I think it's a crap shoot. The odds are really bad, especially in this town. But I have a lot of faith in [Josh Kelley], and I wanted to have that one day when I stand in front of my friends and family and honor him and how important he is in my life. My career is really important, but there have to be other great things in life besides work."

ON THE MORMON INFLUENCE IN HER LIFE AFTER HER BROTHER'S DEATH:

"A couple of Mormon families were a great comfort [after the death of her brother when Katie was 7 years old]. My parents felt a great desire for answers, and they found an answer in the Mormon church ... or answers they could live with, anyway, because there really are none. I didn't really understand death, so it was very confusing for me. The worst part was watching the devastation of my family. They weren't the same anymore. Everything was kind of a mess. It wasn't like Ordinary People, where it destroyed that family so badly that there was never finding any joy or loving or appreciating being alive again. But I give my parents unbelievable credit for pulling it together, and I give the Mormon church a lot of credit for helping them to do that."

ON HER OLD-FASHIONED VALUES:

"I ... didn't want to live together before we were married. I still have enough Mormon in me ... not a lot, but enough ... that I wanted to keep that a little bit sacred."

A Katherine Heigl Photo

ON HER CLOSE RELATIONSHIP WITH HER MOTHER, NANCY HEIGL:

"I talk to my mother every day, and I've always felt the need to defend or excuse my relationship with my mother. The men in my life can feel, 'I should be more important in your life than your mother.' A lot of men would have problems with that relationship, but Josh is unbelievably mature. He's really wise and really grounded. He was the first man in my life I could go to with a problem and feel confident that he would help me find a solution. For my mother, Josh is a relief, because at the end of the day, any good parent wants you to be happy, and Josh makes me happy. I laugh a lot more. I'm not as stressed out. My burden is lightened."

ON FINDING HAPPINESS:

"As women, we have more of a tendency to want to be people-pleasers, and I know a lot of women who are not vocal about what makes them happy. I was like that in my early 20s, but not anymore. I spent a lot of time not being clear about who I was and what was important to me. It's easy to be taken advantage of if you're not honest. I knew that dance of trying to please a man, trying to guess what they want you to be, and I got really tired of that, really confused and frustrated. I decided I was sick of trying to figure out what everybody else wanted, and I should just decide what I want, and be honest, and not spend all my time guessing. Josh is the first serious relationship I've ever had where I was like, This is me. From the moment I met him, I said, This is what I want and what I need."

Ride With Me

Steve Marsi is the Managing Editor of TV Fanatic. Follow him on Google+ or email him here.

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I think it's greath that she is so honest about her beliefs, opinions and wishes. She knows what she wants, feels and thinks and she doesn apologises for it, just as she shouldn't! So good for her!

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Great interview, and love her candid honesty. I do think people do get carried away of overreacting. Tam that comment coming from isn't all surprising considering you praised Ellen for her honesty, but you bash Katherine Heigl for hers. Yea, that's such a valid opinion there. I just don't get it. Some stars are allowed by some fans to be honest, but heaven forbid if Heigl is *shrugs*. Personally, I felt Ellen and Patrick's criticism of the writing and etc were far more harsh and brutal since they have done it non-stop since May. Yet, somehow Heigl slammed for hers?? Double standards in fandoms are amazing :(.

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Honest, beautiful and real talent.
Love Gizzie, and hope to be together. It makes me watch the 4th series.

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The women that interviewed Katherine for the vanity fair article said(on E! News yesterday) that she is no longer a practicing mormon but that she still practices some of the mormon beliefs.

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Not to be mean or anything...I'm sorry if I came off as being snarky, just there. ...She's still awesome! :)

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Mormon? Huh, that comes as a bit of a surprise. I'm Mormon...and if I were working in Hollywood, I think I'd be a little more choosy about the roles I pick and the people I choose to portray. But good for her, still sticking to some of the beliefs of the Church.

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I don't think Gizzie killed the ratings. In fact,k the ratings went down since they have been having serious problems, which is no surprise since everyone I know offline watches for them and them only and quit the show when it looked like they were about to end. In fact, one of the highest-rated episode of this season was the episode marketed as Gizzie having hot sex (episode 6).
Ratings ploy or not, Gizzie is what made me stay with the show after wanting to quit it last season and I know many people who stayed with the show or went back to the show because they loved them so much. I don't see Katie dissing Gizzie, just the adultery part of it, which she has criticized before, in fact months ago when it first happened, both she and TR are very upset about the adultery thing and have said it many times in the past. They did however said they did love Gizzie and hoped they stayed together and Katherine has said that doing romance with TR was easier than with anyone else as he was her ebst friend and she was so at ease with him and that is what gave them great chemistry. Hardly someone who hates the couple, just the way they happened, which all Gizzie fans hate.

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She seems arrogant to me. Anyway I agree about Gizzie. They hurted the ratings but Derek/Rose will kill the show. I boycotted all Rose's episodes.

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She looks amazing in the pictures. I definitely admire her honesty. Can't waite to read the rest of the article at work.

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God this woman is so arrogant and ungrateful. Talk about biting the hand that feeds you.

Grey's Anatomy Quotes

There's a reason I said I'd be happy alone. It wasn't 'cause I thought I'd be happy alone. It was because I thought if I loved someone and then it fell apart, I might not make it. It's easier to be alone, because what if you learn that you need love and you don't have it? What if you like it and lean on it? What if you shape your life around it and then it falls apart? Can you even survive that kind of pain? Losing love is like organ damage. It's like dying. The only difference is death ends. This? It could go on forever.

Meredith

Did you say it? 'I love you. I don't ever want to live without you. You changed my life.' Did you say it? Make a plan. Set a goal. Work toward it, but every now and then, look around; Drink it in 'cause this is it. It might all be gone tomorrow."

Meredith (closing voiceover)