Tom Hardy Actor The Relevant

How to avoid awkward questions 

Photo: Getty Images

Take inspiration from Jennifer Lawrence, Tom Hardy or these MotoGP stars and learn how to react to questions you would rather not answer 

We’ve all been there. Someone asks you a question you’d rather not answer, and what follows in an uncomfortable pause followed by something you are probably going to regret. In order to avoid this happening again, we’ve looked at what the stars do in those situations and learned a thing or two.

If Tom Hardy, J-Law or Valentino Rossi can get out of an awkward situation then so can you. Here are five different ways to avoid those questions you really don’t want to answer. 

1. The LAWRENCE technique: “LOOK AT ME, MAN”

Your interviewer is trying to get something out of you that you don’t want to talk about. Turn the game on its head and put the pressure on them. Find a weakness and exploit it. Jennifer Lawrence wasn’t afraid to do this at the Golden Globes recently when a journalist didn’t even have enough respect to look away from his phone while asking her questions. He paid for it big time. 

© YouTube // The Telepraph

She can also do it differently: Jennifer was in a much better mood at the Oscars in 2013, giving excellent answers to rather average questions… check it out for yourself.  


Tom Hardy took the “turning the tables“ game even further, showing in impressive fashion how you can transform the interviewer into the interviewee in just a few words. When someone asks you an awkward or unpleasant question, ask them want they really want to hear, or why they are even asking it. It puts you in a better position and gives you time to find the best answer. Even if this is just a simple “thank you“. 

© YouTube // La Cosa Cine

He’s learned his lesson:  The coolness Hardy demonstrates in the video above is the result of years of experience. There have been moments when he’s not been as cool under pressure. 



When you don’t want to talk, but not saying anything is impolite, then the best thing to do is to just say as little as possible. You’ll find that the interviewer is left in a difficult position. You’ve answered their questions and remained relatively polite in the process. Now the ball is in their court to coax something out of you! Shia LeBeouf plays this game very well. 

© YouTube // FOX 5 DC

He’s making progress: He’s at least managing to add a few more words to his vocabulary and seems to be over his “Shia Labeoufing” phase. 

4. Do it like Lorenzo: “If you don´t tell, I don´t tell you” 

If you’re being asked for your opinion on a very delicate topic then try and make sure you’re not the only one coughing up words of wisdom. Let those around you offer their opinion before you decide to say something you might regret. MotoGP world champion Jorge Lorenzo used this tactic astutely in the video below, deciding not to offer an answer in the end. 

© YouTube // Fernando M

Dirty game: When you promise to give answers but don’t. You won’t be able to play that game too many times if you want to be trusted. 

5. The ROSSI alternative: “PENSAVO CHE MI FACEVI UNA DOMANDA INTELLIGENTE” (“I thought you were going to ask me an intelligent question“) 

Depending on how you say it, this one could be seen as an attack or a simple plea for quality journalism. Either way, you’ve managed to avoid the awkward question. 

A bit of friendly banter: This only works if, like Rossi, you know the interviewer well. These two have known each other for years and know how to test the other. 

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02 2016

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