Interview Magazine - The Actor Who Gives Period...(May 2001)

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Interview Magazine - The Actor Who Gives Period...(May 2001)

Post  DebraRatt on Mon Jul 16, 2012 3:22 am

Interview Magazine
May 2001
by Glenn Collins

Jeremy Northam
The actor who gives the period pieces their exclamation point.

Jeremy Northam is the crown prince of the costume extravaganza (Emma,1996; An Ideal Husband, 1999). But for one brief shining moment, the 39-year-old Royal National Theatre thespian joyfully leapt over that BBC wall to win raves for his role in Happy, Texas (1999) as an escaped convict masquerading as a gay beauty pageant director (don't ask). Now he's back in collar stays in the glossy new Ismail Merchant and James Ivory adaptation of Henry James' The Golden Bowl, playing an aristocrat enmeshed with his heiress wife (Kate Beckinsale), her father the Tycoon (Nick Nolte) and, of course, Mrs. Tycoon (Uma Thurman). Doubles anyone?

GC: So here you are once again, in glorious clothing.
JN: Yes, wing collars are getting a bit much. I've got calluses around my neck.

GC: Were you able to liberate any wonderful clothing for your own wardrobe?
JN: No, nor would I want to. I'm not a big waistcoat wearer - vest wearer, as you'd say. But I've never shot in so many country houses! I mean, it was unbelievable.

GC: You play Prince Amerigo Ugolini, an Italian aristocrat. Is he a bit of a cad?
JN: I don't think he is. Part of my attraction to the story is that everyone is in some way culpable. But this is not a salacious tale of adultery. For me the interesting thing about the part was that it's somebody who learns to love his wife again, really.

GC: Was it the part that interested you?
JN: It was the script that interested me. It stood out from most of the things that I'd read that year. It offered me that rather strange and unfortunate position of being the object of two women's affections throughout the course of the movie. Uma Thurman and Kate Beckinsale.

GC: It's a tough, dirty job
JN: It's a horrible job, but someone has to do it.

GC: You've been labeled a rising star for a few years now. So, is your star still rising or is it now in the firmament?
JN: I have absolutely no sense of where I stand.

GC: Are you satisfied with where you are as far as your career and the roles you're getting?
JN: My work has exceeded any possible expectations. It's taken me places and allowed me to do things that I could have never imagined. Of course, I'd love to be able to do more contemporary roles, but at the same time, I'm working, and it's good work. I enjoy it.

GC: Part of the stardom equation is sexual. And you've been described in the press as "The Thinking Woman's Pinup".
JN: (laughs) What does that mean? Does that mean I look butt ugly?

GC: You don't see yourself in that way?
JN: No, I certainly don't. I look in the mirror in the morning and go, "God, why didn't you get more sleep?" Or "Ohhh God, you're getting old." All of that.

GC: Your father is a Cambridge lecturer and an expert in Ibsen, and your late mother was, I believe, a potter?
JN: It's one of the many things that she did amongst bringing up a family of four.

GC: And growing up as the youngest of four?
JN: You get away with murder. And after you've grown you've got it written all over your whole persona-you're cheeky even as an adult. Christ, this sounds like a therapy session.

GC: Then let's skip the therapy. Will we see more of you on the stage?
JN: It's hard to predict. I did a play last year for the first time in about five years, and it was an odd experience because my mum died in the middle of the run. It was strange to be sort of in, and outside, of yourself - all at the same time. It was strange to be in that state of rawness in public before I had time to process it myself.

GC: And then having to assume another acting role, performing that role, and then going back to being your own self, with your own grief.
JN: It was very strange, humbling. I have to say that they are not acclaimed for their self-esteem, actors.

GC: No, but you gotta have some sort of moxie to say those lines and to make people believe ---
JN: And get away with it.

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Re: Interview Magazine - The Actor Who Gives Period...(May 2001)

Post  Marriela on Mon Jul 16, 2012 4:05 am

I had not read this interview before. Thanks, Deb!

What happens to you, Jeremy Northam? So much is missing with your big roles...
So talented and handsome actor, but the acting fortune is so unfair to him in recent years Crying or Very sad


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