* ContractualPurity: Appeared topless in ''Havoc'' and ''Film/BrokebackMountain'', as well as playing a recovering drug addict in ''Film/RachelGettingMarried'' to avoid this. She said in an interview that just because she did family friendly films before, it did not mean she was [[IAmNotSpock as squeaky clean as those characters]].
* DyeingForYourArt:
** To play Fantine in ''Film/LesMiserables2012''. She had her hair cut (on camera) extremely close to her scalp, telling her hairdresser (who played the barber on-screen) that if he cut her scalp, and she started to bleed, to keep going. (The idea of which freaked Creator/HughJackman out.) More alarmingly, she lost a ''lot'' of weight in a very short amount of time -- if Bazaar magazine is to be believed, fourteen pounds in fifteen days for one stretch of it. She doesn't talk much about her diet or her methods, as the point of the exercise was to make herself look like she was dying, and she refuses to glamorize her character starving to death.
** Earlier she was required to gain ten pounds for ''Film/TheDevilWearsPrada''. Then they told her instead to ''lose'' ten pounds and would be padded for Andy's 'fat' scenes.
* HollywoodHypeMachine: An example that ''did'' hold up. She was held up as a future star even as early as ''Film/ThePrincessDiaries'' but ''Film/RachelGettingMarried'' and ''Film/BrokebackMountain'' got the ball rolling. She eventually won an Oscar and became one of the most sought-after actresses in Hollywood.
* NamedAfterSomebodyFamous: She is indeed named after William Shakespeare's wife.
* OldShame: [[UsefulNotes/AcademyAwardsCeremonies Her 2011 Oscar hosting]]. She says it resulted from not getting honest feedback from her friends and not watching the taped rehearsals. She later warned Creator/SethMacFarlane to not repeat her mistakes for the 2013 show.
* ThrowItIn: A rather random scene in ''Film/ThePrincessDiaries'' has her falling off the bleachers and bursting out laughing. This was an unscripted {{Blooper}} but the director felt it was in character for [[CuteClumsyGirl Mia]] and kept rolling.
* TomHanksSyndrome: Got her start doing family friendly comedies before earning Oscar cred for darker roles. However she does still do comedy from time to time - ''Film/LoveAndOtherDrugs'', ''Film/TheIntern''.
* WhatCouldHaveBeen:
** She very nearly got the role of Christine in the 2004 version of ''Theatre/PhantomOfTheOpera'' - but was too busy filming ''The Princess Diaries 2'' at the time.
** She was likewise almost cast as Johanna in Tim Burton's film of ''Film/SweeneyTodd''. However he wanted an unknown actress, so it went to Jayne Wisener instead.