This morning, we were treated to Gwyneth Paltrow’s debut country single. And, yes, we were thinking then what you’re thinking now: Gwyneth? Country? Huh? Turns out the track comes from her new movie, Country Strong. Still, as much as we appreciate an actor’s craft and all, we find it hard to imagine impeccably upper-crust Gwyneth getting down and dirty, blue collar-style. We also couldn’t help but be reminded of Zooey Deschanel, another actress with some (considerably more developed) roots music chops. That’s when it occurred to us: Gwyneth has become the mainstream’s Zooey. Or Zooey has become the indie Gwyneth. Either way, the parallels between the two stars, listed after the jump, are eerie.
1. The country music career
Zooey is already two albums into her country-folk singing gig as the songwriting half of She & Him, her celebration collaboration with M. Ward. And here comes Gwyneth with “Country Strong” the title song for her new film, which debuts December 22nd. It’s clear that Zooey’s got more music cred, but Gwyn’s singing voice could give her a run for her money.
Gwyneth Paltrow — “Country Strong”
She & Him — “In the Sun”
2. The rock-star husband
It must be said that Gwyneth had the idea to marry a musician first — she and Coldplay’s Chris Martin got hitched back in 2003. They have two kids with quirky names, Apple and Moses. Zooey didn’t marry her microphone-wielding man, Death Cab for Cutie frontman Ben Gibbard, until last year, although we’d argue she scored the more desirable mate.
Gwyneth and Chris
Zooey and Ben
3. The aspirational lifestyle
If you haven’t checked out GOOP, Gwyneth’s loopy email newsletter featuring her (and her frequently name-dropped celeb friends’) deep thoughts on fashion and wellness, among other things, you’re missing out on some major laughs. Zooey, not to be outdone, was profiled in the now-defunct design magazine Domino. Why yes, her style is just as quirkily vintage-chic as you’d imagine.
Zooey in Domino:
4. The restricted diet
Gwyneth has been known for her extreme regimens: Back in May, the skinny actress revealed that she prepared for her Iron Man 2 promotional tour by feasting on protein bars, veggie juice, and other lo-cal delights. Some speculate that her eating habits are to blame for her bone disease, osteopenia. Zooey, for her part, was a strict vegan and even appeared on Top Chef Masters for a vegan challenge. But now that she realizes she’s allergic to soy and wheat, she’ll eat some meat now and then.
Zooey on Top Chef Masters:
Gwyneth teaches you to roast chicken:
5. The backlash
So, we all know about the Gwyneth backlash, right? She’s WASPy, she’s entitled, she sorta thinks Americans are stupid, her newsletter is silly and self-involved. All of this has put her at the top of the tabloid media’s punching-bag list. But what could we possibly find to hate in sweet, smart, indie-rock, art-film Zooey Deschanel to hate? This BuzzFeed post collecting a handful of negative articles sums it up: According to critics, she’s a boring, pseudo-“amazing” Manic Pixie Dream Girl.
Abby Elliott parodies Gwyneth’s chicken video:
Zooey on Sucks or Rules: