Belfast Telegraph

Kate Beckinsale: 'I can be a bit of a hermit'

Kate Beckinsale can't believe her 17-year-old daughter is going to learn how to drive before she does.

Bookish actress Kate Beckinsale would stay at home and read if friends didn't force her to socialise and have fun.

The Underworld star is a regular at red carpet events and Hollywood get togethers, but in a new interview with Los Angeles Confidential, she admits she gets far too comfortable at home when she hasn't got work commitments to attend to.

"Because I was an only child for a long spell, I literally could stay inside with a pile of books for an indefinite period of time - to a dangerous degree, like a hermit," she confessed. "I really could do that. Once I’m out, I usually have a nice time. It’s just the going in which I have to be kind of forced (to do). I’ve got enough people that I like and run into, and then I have fun. I’m actually pretty good at having fun.”

The 42-year-old's love of a good book and the Los Angeles home, where she has lived for 20 years, means she never really has a need to go anywhere, and so she has never learned to drive in California. That's a sad fact that is beginning to bug her.

"It’s so stupid now that my daughter is actually on the verge of getting a license," she wailed. "Like 'Oh my God, I really have been submerged! My child that was in a highchair is about to tear off down the street in a large vehicle. How did that happen?'"

Kate's daughter Lily, from her relationship with actor Michael Sheen, is now 17, and having a grown-up child has given the actress a chance to reassess what she wants to do with her career.

"The big thing is that my daughter is now 17-years-old and couldn’t be paid to spend time with me," she laughed. "That’s a lie, but you know what I mean. It’s a very different situation than having a five-year-old or a 10-year-old. So I’ve sort of come out of that deep-sea dive of motherhood. It is my way of coming up for air and going, 'Oh, I get to have a little bit more latitude for myself in terms of what I want to do!'

It turns out, the actress would like to write, and she's currently adapting a novel she's optioned about a mother and daughter into a screenplay.

"It’s an extremely dark sort of comedy,” she teased.

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