It didn’t take long for Jennifer Lawrence to become one of the most successful actors of her generation, holding the Guinness World Record for ‘Highest-grossing female action movie star.’ The actor has appeared in a variety of films, from superhero flicks to comedies and intense dramas, highlighting her ability to master any genre.
Lawrence’s first significant role came in 2007 with the sitcom The Bill Engvall Show, followed by her film debut a year later in Garden Party, an indie movie directed by Jason Freeland. However, within a few short years, you could catch Lawrence in the X-Men series, The Hunger Games franchise and Silver Linings Playbook, for which she won an Oscar.
Discussing her dedication to acting at a young age, Lawrence told 60 Minutes, “It was just an overwhelming feeling of, I get this, this is what I was meant to do, and to get people to try to understand that, when you’re 14 years old, wanting to drop out of school and do this, and your parents are just like you’re out of your mind…” She added, “I wanted to forge my own path, I found what I wanted to do and I didn’t want anything getting in the way of it.”
Lawrence’s intense dedication has seen her do things she wouldn’t usually do, such as extensive diving for The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, which led her to go partially deaf for a few months. Elsewhere, for her role in X-Men as Mystique, the actor endured incredibly sore blisters due to the amount of full-body makeup she was forced to wear.
However, one particular film had Lawrence learning a skill she never thought she’d need to know – how to skin an animal. Before she was the survival-savvy Katniss Everdeen in The Hunger Games, Lawrence starred in Winter’s Bone, directed by Debra Granik, earning the young star a ‘Best Actress’ nomination.
The film sees Lawrence play Ree Dolly, who lives in poverty with her mentally ill mother. She must care for her, as well as her siblings, often resorting to hunting to gather food. Lawrence’s character skins several animals in the film; thus, to make the scenes look as realistic as possible, the actor was taught how to master the skill in real life.
She told Ciak Magazine, “It surely is the most revolting thing I ever learned.” Lawrence continued, “I think I am the only actress alive who knows how to skin a squirrel. But I am happy I know how to do it, it could come useful later in life. You never know…”