Gerard Butler talks action heroes

Category: Interviews | Posted by: admin
Article Date: March 19, 2008 | Publication: USA Weekend Who's News Blog | Author: Lorrie Lynch with Kathy Rowings
Publication/Article Link:USA Weekend Who's News Blog

Every now and then my magazine readers respond overwhelmingly to a particular actor. I'll be scrolling through the hundreds of questions I get each month and realize that I have dozens about one guy. When I first started writing my Who's News column it was Richard Dean Anderson in MacGyver, who commanded attention. Since then there have been many, among them Mark Harmon for any of his series, Kevin Sorbo in Hercules, Joe Lando in Dr. Quinn, Medicine Woman, David James Elliott in J.A.G., George Clooney in ER, Chris Noth of Sex and the City, Colin FIrth after the BBC's Pride and Prejudice, Vincent D'Onofrio from Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and since his sexy performance in the movie version of The Phantom of the Opera, the very handsome Gerard Butler. In fact, I still get lots of questions about Butler, whom we also saw in 300 and will see again April 4 when his Nim's Island, with Jodie Foster, opens, so L.A. writer Nancy Mills took the opportunity to converse. (You can watch the Nim's Island trailer below.)

They ended up talking about action heroes. More specifically, why many of America’s recent action heroes — for instance, Spider-Man’s Tobey Maguire and X-Men’s James Marsden — don’t look too tough. “In general, I think that men in America grow up more as boys,” says Butler, 38, who was raised in Scotland. “It seems to be a physical thing. Even if they’re big and pumped, they still have a boyishness about them. In a way, maybe they’re lucky. In America, you have such a broad spectrum. I hate to say it but boyishness appeals because it satisfies everybody. It works on both coasts and the Midwest.”

Butler wants to make sure we make clear that this is a comment, not a criticism. “They might be boys,” he adds, “but there are some incredible actors among them.” As for his own manly looks, he says, “I definitely think, having grown up in Europe and also lived in America, that people in Europe mature faster. But I shouldn’t generalize because sometimes you run into someone like Abigail Breslin (his co-star in Nim’s Island), who’s 12 and is more mature than I am. Or Emmy Rossum, who was 16 when she started The Phantom of the Opera and who was so intelligent and so mature it was kind of scary, actually.”