What Did Keira Knightley 'Admire' About Begin Again Costar Adam Levine's Acting Debut?

What Did Keira Knightley 'Admire' About Begin Again Costar Adam Levine's Acting Debut?
Keira Knightley and Adam Levine
Andrew Schwartz

updated 06/10/2014 at 04:25 PM EDT

originally published 06/10/2014 07:15PM

It may seem like a backhanded compliment, but what Keira Knightley has to say about costar Adam Levine's acting debut is genuine praise delivered with British dry wit.

"He did play a d–head very well," Knightley tells Glamour for its July issue.

"Actually, I admire him being so willing. To play a d–head is quite a big thing when you are trying to break into film and you want to be likable," she says of PEOPLE's Sexiest Man Alive.

What Did Keira Knightley 'Admire' About Begin Again Costar Adam Levine's Acting Debut?| Begin Again, Adam Levine, Keira Knightley

Keira Knightley on Glamour’s cover

Tom Munro

Knightley, 29, and Levine, 35, play a couple in the upcoming Begin Again – she's a songwriter, and he's a rocker who landed his first big recording contract. Also starring Mark Ruffalo, Catherine Keener, Hailee Steinfeld and CeeLo Green, the project is a departure from Knightley's heavier dramatic roles.



"With a feel-good film you are always risking going way too cheesy … but maybe I can have a little holiday where I'm not playing a character who is being destroyed," she says.

Knightley sings and plays guitar in the film, which makes her admitted stage fright seem even more surprising.

"I have really suffered from stage fright, or actually camera fright," she says. "[Because] you are presenting layers and layers of pretending, and it's not just you but other people in charge of your face or your body or your hair."



Levine has said he was also nervous while filming.

"I was worried, but I had to pretend like I wasn't," Maroon 5's lead singer told PEOPLE in April. "I kept thinking, 'I'm an actor. For this next two weeks, I am an actor.' I crossed my fingers and hoped it turned out fine."

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