‘The Devil Wears Prada’: Emily Blunt Stole One of Her Most Iconic Lines From a Mean Mom in a Grocery Store

Emily Blunt is one of Hollywood’s most versatile actresses. Highly skilled at her craft, she’s able to play a wide range of characters in countless roles.

Part of what makes her so talented is her ability to mimic the behaviors and mannerisms of people she sees in the real world, which is exactly what she did for her role in The Devil Wears Prada.

In fact, one of her most memorable lines in the movie was actually taken from a mother she saw berating her child in a supermarket during filming. 

Emily Blunt stole an infamous ‘Devil Wears Prada’ line from a mean mom

Emily Blunt
Emily Blunt on “Jimmy Kimmel Live” | Randy Holmes/ABC via Getty Images

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Blunt has said on record that she didn’t really like the character she plays in The Devil Wears Prada. She personally wouldn’t enjoy spending time with someone who acted the way she did in the movie and prepared for the role by studying the mean people she would see each day. She detailed the process in a resurfaced 2015 Howard Stern interview.

“I like to soak up people on the street and people I meet,” Blunt said. “Well just sort of, I guess I steal from people I meet.”

Blunt ended up adding a line to the script that she took from a real life experience. 

“I saw a mother speaking to her child in a supermarket when we were shooting that film,” Blunt said. “And it’s a line that gets quoted back to me now, where she yelled at her kid in the supermarket. And she kind of went like this with her hand [opens and closes hand like a puppet]], and she goes, ‘Yeah, I’m hearing this, and I want to hear this [closes hand].’” 

Emily Blunt thinks a key skill to being a great actress is mimicry 

One of Blunt’s most impressive skills is her ability to copy the thoughts and expressions of people and then apply them to roles. She believes this is one of the keys to success as an actress. 

“Part of me sometimes feels that I think that is—that does go into it,” Blunt said. “For me, that’s what helps me. Is to kind of feel what other people would feel like in my skin and that that’s the trick.”

On the other hand, she also feels that having a heightened sense of empathy helps deliver a memorable performance. 

“And other times, I think it’s about the ultimate expression of empathy,” Blunt said. “You have to be so interested in people, and empathize with them profoundly.” 

She has a little trouble mimicking an American accent 

Blunt has had to mimic an American accent for several of her biggest roles. In films such as Sicario, she plays an American and must sound believable. Yet, despite how real her American accent may sound on screen, it’s not easy for her to pull off. 

When asked what she references to effectively mimic an American accent, she had an interesting answer. 

“Well we all—I think Brits always say it’s like a standard American accent, which is probably insulting because I think accents are very different in America,” Blunt said.

Southern accents are easier for Emily Blunt than New York accents 

Even though they are challenging for her, Blunt does well with American accents. She admitted that Southern accents are easier for English people than other regional accents. 

“New York accents are really hard for Brits, whereas a Southern accent is easier for some reason,” Blunt said. “The rhythms, the tambour of it is like, much easier.”