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Helena Bonham Carter does it her way

February 17, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Oscar nominee Helena Bonham Carter is quick-witted, genuine and you get a sense that what's in her head comes right out of her mouth -- no filter whatsoever.

"I live with a boyfriend who keeps wanting to deform me, which is great," said Carter. "It's like, he makes my head big, you know, Tim Burton."

Burton gave her a big head as the Red Queen in "Alice in Wonderland" and he turned her into a primate for his take on "Planet of the Apes."

"And he made me into a chimpanzee. He was the one person who really got me early on and said, 'She wants to not look like herself.' So, no, I'm lucky, you know?" said Carter.

She also appeared in Burton's "Big Fish," as the matriarch in "Charlie and the Chocolate Factory," and alongside Johnny Depp in "Sweeney Todd."

But it is for a much quieter role that has gotten Carter Oscar attention once again. She plays the Queen Mother in "The King's Speech," a wife trying to help her husband, the future King George VI, lose his stutter.

She has gotten a lot of attention, including the equivalent of the British Academy Award for her work. She's also been getting a lot of attention for her style.

"The whole fashion thing is, like, bewildering to me. When I began this, way back in my youth, I dressed myself which, of course, I continue to do. I did my own hair and make-up. It wasn't about who you wear. It was about what film you were in," Carter said.

The actress in her cares more about the work than the wardrobe.

"It is an open bitch-fest as soon as you walk onto that red carpet. It's a free-for-all and I kind of feel like they're going to bitch about me anyway so I might as well give them something to bitch about," said Carter. "But if I die and when I get to heaven, I'm going to mismatch shoes and they go like, 'uh-uh,' you know, then I'll be proven wrong."

Carter plans to again do it her way on Oscar Sunday.

The 83rd Annual Academy Awards will be presented on Sunday, Feb. 27 at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood. You can watch the ceremony broadcast live on ABC7 beginning at 5 p.m. PT.