After first leaping onto the scene as Christine, the lead role in 2004′s reboot of “The Phantom of the Opera,” it’s safe to say that Emmy Rossum is a force to be reckoned with in Hollywood—and if her many upcoming projects are any indication, it looks like 2013 is shaping up to one of the most exciting years in the 26-year-old’s career.
Rossum’s hit Showtime series “Shameless” just kicked off its third season, her second album Sentimental Journey is out January 29, and her upcoming movie “Beautiful Creatures”—out February 14—is being billed as the next “Twilight” by many.
On the fashion front, Rossum’s penchant for consistently elegant red carpet looks has established her as a style-setter in her own right, with classic labels like Donna Karan and Ralph Lauren frequently appearing in her repertoire. Here, we caught up with the New york City native to chat about her fashion evolution, the three things in her closet she’ll never part with, some good “Shameless” gossip, and more!
StyleCaster: How has your style evolved throughout your career?
Emmy Rossum: I grew up in New York and I think for a long time my style was pretty gorky preppy New Yorker—mostly sticking to rich jewel tone colors and whites in simple silhouettes. As I traveled more, I’ve become more open to styles from around the world. I’ve kind of morphed into a new style that’s still rooted in the New York sensibilities I grew up with, but now I’m very inspired by a bit of a retro sensibility. I’m more open to trying prints, neons and different shapes that I wouldn’t have when I was younger. I really love all things retro, especially jewelry from the Edwardian and Deco periods. I also love vintage shopping—I was just in Palm Springs and I found the best pair of Chanel sneakers.
Do you have any favorite red carpet moments?
For starters, everything I’ve worn to the Met Balls (like the blue Kenneth Cole gown in 2010) and, of course, Ralph Lauren’s designs which I wore for “The Phantom of the Opera” press tour. I also love Donna Karan, who I’ve worn numerous times.
Tell us about your new album, Sentimental Journey.
[It's] definitely a departure from my first album Inside Out. I was previously with a label, but I did this record on my own with my own money because I really wanted creative control. The album is music I grew up listening to, so it was natural for me. One of the songs, “I’ll Be With You In Apple Blossom Time,” is something my mom used to sing to me when I was young.
The third season of ”Shameless” just started. Any secrets you can tell us?
Well, a lot happens this season. In an upcoming episode (within the next three), one of the main characters will think they have cancer. But it’s actually handled in a very funny way—a very dark funny way.
Your upcoming film “Beautiful Creatures” is getting major buzz, with some calling it the next “Twilight.” What do you think of that comparison?
Obviously people are going to relate the two since they’re both supernatural love stories based off of young adult books. “Beautiful Creatures” is totally southern gothic and has a sense of humor, and it was an experience going from the “Shameless” set where I’m totally dressed down, to “Beautiful Creatures”—where I’m done up and in a glamorous wig.
Which are you more comfortable with?
Well, I’m more comfortable looking like a normal person! It’s much easier to spend fifteen minutes in the makeup chair [on the set of "Shameless"].
What are three items in your closet that you’ll never throw out?
I have a Ralph Lauren Ricky bag in red crocodile that he gave to me for my 18th birthday. It’s insured—I’m scared to take it out of the house because I’m afraid I’ll lose it or it will get stolen. I have a DKNY sweater with holes in the sleeves that my mom always tries to throw out when she visits, but I wear it anyway. Also, a pair of Roger Vivier shoes—they’re custom sandals made to match the color of my Ralph Lauren dress which I wore to the Oscars in 2005.
Do you have any style icons who inspire you?
I definitely like Cate Blanchett and Tilda Swinton, and Naomi Watts always looks effortlessly glamorous.