Julia Stiles on Her Love of Old-School Radio and Learning French From an App

Plus, the Jason Bourne star's must-watch TV shows

Headshot of Emma Bazilian


Name Julia Stiles

Age 35

Claim to fame Reprises her role in the Bourne series as Nicky Parsons in its latest installment, Jason Bourne (in theaters July 29) 

Base Vancouver

Instagram @missjuliastiles

Adweek: What's the first information you consume in the morning?

Julia Stiles: I turn on the radio. I'm a really big fan of old-fashioned dial radio. I love WNYC and NPR and also 88.3 in New York, which is the jazz station, and it's usually good for background music. If I'm not in New York City or by a traditional radio, I'll stream it on my phone, although I usually try not to look at my phone first thing in the morning.

What social media do you use?

I've been on a diet from social media recently, but the one that I have the most fun with is Instagram.

Who do you follow?

There's someone whose user name is @iamcitizenjane and she typically posts beautiful, interesting images of women and quotes that are inspirational but without being hokey. Production Showroom is a good fashion Instagram. I'm actually into following tattoo artists, too. Doctor Woo Tattoo is a great one.

What TV shows do you watch?

We don't have cable, so I don't watch a lot of traditional TV. I watch a lot of Netflix and there's this thing in Canada called Show Me, and then I also get things from iTunes. I'm obsessed with Veep. I binge watch that when I come to New York because I can use my HBO Go. Schitt's Creek I'm a big fan of, and I just got into Lady Dynamite. I'm finding it very bizarre and lovely. Michael Pollan's Cooked was an interesting series. And Amy Schumer, I love her show.

Do you listen to any podcasts?

I love podcasts! I wish I had my own, although I think there are already too many podcasts, so I don't know how I would create a new one. First, I'm trying to learn French because I'm going to be working in France for the rest of the year, so I have a French-for-beginners podcast. As far as fun ones, I like Dinner Party Download. Mash-Up Americans is a really interesting one; it's about diversity but in sort of optimistic, fun, conversational setting. Snap Judgment's a good one for stories, sort of like The New Yorker Radio Hour.

What's on your reading list?

I'm in the middle of a book that I'm not really into and I was thinking that I need a different book, and I was on the subway and this woman was standing above me reading a Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett book called Good Omens. I read the back cover—I have a problem reading over people's shoulders—and it looked really good, so I'm trying to find a bookstore to go buy it in person, although that seems nonexistent now. I also just read a David Sedaris book, Let's Explore Diabetes With Owls, and I loved that.

What are your favorite apps?

As I said, I'm trying to learn French, so I have Duolingo and this Michel Thomas app, which I actually discovered from the David Sedaris book. I like WNYC for streaming radio. Bandsintown is a good app for concerts, and the MLB app is great for baseball games.

What's your team?

The Mets. I have to say, for me, listening to baseball is like Valium. If you asked me to spout statistics and players' names and their records and where they got traded from, I wouldn't be able to do that. I literally just find baseball games really soothing.

This story first appeared in the July 25, 2016 issue of Adweek magazine.

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@adweekemma emma.bazilian@adweek.com Emma Bazilian is Adweek's features editor.