The Academy Award-winning actress, who famously took on the paparazzi in 2013, now stars in "Kidnap," a nail-biter of a film about a mom who takes it upon herself to rescue her son after he's abducted. And it was personal experience that helped Berry delve into her character.
"My daughter was traumatized until the age of 5," Berry tells Mom.me about her experience with the paparazzi. "She didn't even want to go to school, she didn't want to leave the house. She would walk down the street with a coat over her face. She just couldn't face it."
Berry began to notice that all of the unwanted attention was taking an even deeper toll on her child, whose emotional development, she says, was suffering.
"It's not normal to have that kind of fear, and she would say to me, 'Mommy, are they gonna kill you? Are they gonna kill us?'" Berry adds.
But it was two celebrity moms in particular—actress and mom Jennifer Garner and Grammy-winning mama Adele—who helped the Oscar winner bring the bill to the California senate and then get signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown.
"I asked so many people in Hollywood who said that this was an issue for them to come testify, and nobody would come but Jennifer," Berry says of Garner. "Jennifer was the only one that said to me, of the people that I asked, 'Yes, I'll come testify with you.' She and Adele. Adele gave gobs of money. She couldn't come testify but ... we needed money, too, to pay the lawyers and the lobbyists. Those two people singlehandedly helped me get it passed."
Talk about serious mom power! Berry even named her production company (with partner Elaine Goldsmith-Thomas) 606 Films, after the anti-paparazzi law that was finally passed.
With her company and with "Kidnap," the actress says she wants to empower women through stories of strong female characters.
"For so long, I've seen men—and wonderful men—save the day. But I've always thought, 'I know that women are just as fierce,'" she says. "And when you're a mom and somebody is harming your child, I know there's no depths, there's no lengths, nothing we wouldn't do."