• children’s bedtime. Although, as it turns out, motherhood has proven to be one of the most challenging roles.

    “Oh my God,” she says with utmost sincerity and palpable perplexity when I ask about raising girls as opposed to boys. “I don’t know what happens in other homes, but in mine, it’s very, very different and much harder. I probably deserve it – I should have to deal with girls. The emotions run so much higher. The arguing about clothes? I am stunned. We have a whole fashion system to try and override the fighting.”

    You get the sense that such sisterly antagonism is anathema to Parker. One of eight children, with a mother who instilled high standards for behaviour – “she had to, otherwise it would have been chaos” – she is unfailingly respectful to others. “Even if there’s someone I don’t like, I can’t bear to b**** about them,” she says, allowing a rare curse to pass her lips. “And I can’t stand the proliferation of reality shows where women are mean to each other. I can’t believe the way they talk

    to each other, the names they call each other.”

    In fact, both Parker and her husband of 15 years, Matthew Broderick, are quiet types – Parker describes them as “not social” – forging a few deep friendships rather than scores of celebrity acquaintances. The women she looks up to are “cultured, very curious. They see everything, they read everything, they’re very interested in the world.” Right now, she has high hopes of seeing America’s first female President. “I’m a huge fan of Hillary Clinton. Her curiosity is so compelling to me, her desire to listen and learn and travel. Personally, and I mean this with all sincerity, I will be very, very sad if she doesn’t choose to run. I think she has so much to offer and is equipped to do it well, to be thoughtful, reasonable, strong, authoritative, empathetic.

    “EMOTIONS run higher
    [with girls]. The arguing about clothes? I’m stunned”

    Dress by Victoria Beckham; necklace by Monica Vinader

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