Her starring role in the big screen adaptation of Les Miserables has singled her out amongst fans and critics as hot favourite to claim an Academy Award when the Oscars get under way next February – so much so that Anne Hathaway admits it would be 'embarrassing' if she didn't get a nomination.
The 30-year old actress has received universal praise for her role as Fantine in Tom Hooper's acclaimed interpretation of the 1862 novel by French author Victor Hugo, but the relentless Oscar buzz has left her sweating weeks before the nominations are announced.
“It's hugely flattering but nothing is real yet, so it's lovely that people are talking about it,” she told Fox News. 'So I'm of two minds, which is one, 'Oh my gosh, could you imagine if it came true?' and two, 'Can you imagine how embarrassing it'll be if it doesn't happen if I don't get nominated?' So I'm just trying to keep my feet on the ground at the moment.”
Hathaway – who caused a stir by shedding weight in preparation for the role - showcases an impressive singing voice in the musical, and admits her close association with Fantine dates back to her childhood.
“My history with the show began when I was seven,” she said. “My mother was cast in the ensemble and as the factory girl, and as the Fantine understudy, so my second time I actually saw the show I got to see my mother play Fantine, which is the role I play in the film.
“Since then I just had it in my head. I think that was the show that made me really want to be an actress and really have a concept of getting up and performing and telling a story through performance and I've just loved singing ever since then. I've been studying voice for about 10 years now, never with anything like this in mind, just because I really love doing it.
“So yeah, I'm kind of amazed that I didn't really expect singing to ever play a big part of my life. I just thought it was something that I liked to do, so it's kind of crazy that this particular show has come about this way in my life.”
While Oscar nominations are yet to be announced, the actress has been named in the Best Actress category for the Screen Actors Guild and Golden Globe Awards.
Les Miserables, which also features the talents of Russell Crowe and Hugh Jackman, has been nominated for Best Film at the Critics Choice and Screen Actors Guild Awards.