Keira Knightley doesn’t really miss what she doesn’t have.
The 33-year-old actress is featured in a new in-depth profile for The Guardian where she opened up about exploring the more masculine side of women with her roles. But that doesn’t mean she envies the opposite sex.
“I’ve never wanted a penis,” she said. “Apart from to piss up a tree. Being able to do that standing up: so convenient. You can just whip it out and whatever. But the idea of something so vulnerable swinging between my legs, I think I’m all right without.”
WATCH: Keira Knightley Doesn’t Like Modern-Day Films Because the Female Characters ‘Always Get Raped’
Knightley went through some of her most famous roles — like Bend It Like Beckham and her new film Colette — to dissect how she takes on characters that explore women “stuck in the dresses and makeup.”
“Almost every character I’ve played has tried to break out of that image of femininity,” Knightley said. “That’s why I like period films, because it’s such an overt cage you put the woman in. That’s always something I’ve really identified with. I feel like I sit somewhere else.”
The actress recently opened up about her preference for period pieces, which she has become known for ever since she reached superstardom with the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.
“I don’t really do films set in the modern-day because the female characters nearly always get raped,” she told Variety. “I always find something distasteful in the way women are portrayed, whereas I’ve always found very inspiring characters offered to me in historical pieces.”
Knightley said she’s impressed with the strong female characters she sees on television and streaming services and is optimistic about the future of films.
“There’s been some improvement,” she said. “I’m suddenly being sent scripts with present-day women who aren’t raped in the first five pages and aren’t simply there to be the loving girlfriend or wife.”