Elle 2 / 4
Elle 2 / 4

Drew Barrymore landed on the cover of the May issue of Elle magazine, which is on newsstands now. With her personal and professional life in the spotlight lately (and for most of her life, actually), she opens up about heartbreak, her career, her new role in the HBO film adaptation of the Broadway play "Grey Gardens," and learning to stop talking out of the side of her mouth. Check out our exclusive preview of her interview -- and underwater photo shoot -- below.

On her breakup from boyfriend Fabrizio Moretti, drummer for the Strokes:

"It's hard to be with someone for five years and say, 'This isn't going to work.' But it was a time in my life where I finally just said, 'I can't live for anyone else anymore. I have to be on my own.'"

(Check out behind-the-scenes video of Drew going underwater for her photo shoot.)

On the Hollywood career she would like to try:

"I'm in my thirties now, and I really want to try all the things that I haven't gotten to do yet, like directing and doing a drama. I've produced and gotten to do a lot of optimistic love stories, and that was so where I was at for 10 years in my life. And now I feel like, 'OK, now I know how to do that. I wanted to get scared again.'"

(Read about Drew's '60s-inspired hairstyles.)

On preparing for the role of Little Edie in "Grey Gardens":

"I did what I do when I have a big challenge lying in my path. I go to school. I shut the windows, the shades come down, the phone gets turned off, I don't go out -- I study."

(A look back at Drew's glamorous style.)

On completely transforming into Little Edie, the cousin of Jackie Onassis:

"I knew this was not a courtesy meeting, but not far from it. I didn't want to come in there like a hungry freak. But I also felt every second counting. So -- polite conversation, then he [director Michael Sucsy] started looking through my binder, and I saw his demeanor change, actually noticing all the hard work I had put into it. So I just put it out there. I said, 'Look -- I have all of this inside of me, and I promise you that I will change my face to be her. I will learn how to stop talking out of the side of my mouth. I will go to school to relearn body language. I will shut out the world. I will not talk to my friends. I will give up my life for this, because I don't think you can play this character and have a social life and balance the two mentalities. I won't act. I'll become this person."

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Drew Barrymore's Hairstyles

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