Distance Information? | Colin Farrell
an emily blunt interview
Farrell hit American film like a f***ing Tasmanian Devil with
an Irish lilt! He's been working in Dublin for years, but now
we're all getting turned on by, er, onto him.
adored his f***ing performance in Hart's War.
and his latest venue, Phone Booth,
contains yet another (perhaps his finest to date) mesmerizing
performance by the lad. Just brilliant and so intense. And while
I wanted to get violent over that horrid Daredevil
faux pas he was involved in, I remember bits like Minority
Report and remind myself my distaste for a film is never
due to his performance. Time and f****ing time again he shines
in a heap of generic crapshit. That's talent.
guy likes drinkin' women and swearing (hence the lame attempt
at humor above...) in no particular order - but manly man alpha
male exponents aside - he's also one of the most talented blokes
to be imported in years. It is no secret he's waiting to become
a daddy as we speak - so sorry gals - he's tied up for a while.
gathered for his latest film Phone Booth
. He's a real person not afraid to speak his f***ing mind so I
was buckled in. He reminds me of Russell Crowe so much it's weird.
Same kind of intensity and lust for life that's as exciting as
it is addictive. I've met him a coupla times at parties, even
shared a beer, but this was all professional and stuff...
Wow what a piece of work- I mean your performance! And you shot
in twelve days. Was it as intense as it seemed -even for a pro
I hit it fairly hard because I was under the lash. I had a load
of drinks at night because I had to unwind. My head was nearly
destroyed. There was nearly gray matter pouring out of my ears
at the end of every day. I nearly wanted to cry at the end. It
was the toughest job I ever took by a mile just to be in that
phone booth. There wasnt a relaxed moment in the film after
the first few minutes walking down the street.
Obviously this was intense - one scene for you really. Was it
reminiscent of a play?
Yes, absolutely. As well, we rehearsed for two weeks and read
and talked through the script. Anything we found confusing we
tried to sort out, then we went and shot it and shot in continuity
so the whole thing was like a dream to me and it was over like
that. Usually, on a film, youre there for three or four
months. This was twelve f***ing days. It was so fast.
How'd you get so good at American accents?
It boils down to I grew up on American television, T.J. Hooker,
Chips, A-Team, you name it, I grew up watching it. I have American
sounds in my ear all the time. Americans try to do an Irish accent
you grew up with [Irish accent] Ah, have a look at me Lucky
Blue stars green clovers! [laughter]
C: [laughter] Yeah! Its impossible. Its a bit tricky
but I dont think Ive done it justice once. People
tell me Im great but I dont want to hear it. I f***ing
dont think Ive done it right. But its another
part of the gig and another angle into the character. Like Texan
is a bit lazier and New York has a bit more of this. Its
a tap in for the character as well.
What do you think about "Stu's" confession. Did it help
him- or even you?
Well, I hope every confession I do in the film had nothing to
do with me. I hope Im not that asshole. But, theres
lot to be said for a good chat. When you have a friend or lover
or family member and youre having problems and you spit
and this was the ultimate confession. The ultimate
cathartic splurge of self-realization. This fella had shut off
that, not third eye but third ear that we do have. Because we
all do hear with we say and think and he shook that off for a
while. Then he was under the gun literally and he had no choice
and had to spit it out. So in that sense, for Stu, it might be
good later in life. He might be a good dad or husband. The shooter,
basically does him a big favor. Not a disservice at all. Hes
not evil, Stu, but hes on the precipice of that, just pull
you back and remind you what you are. Change it. Thats why
its good when he comes out and says, remember, Ill
be watching you.
Have you met guys like this?
Yeah. But theyve served me a burger at Burger King or theyve
been in a bank working. You can meet bastard publicists, agents,
actors, everything. A bastard is a bastard whatever job he has.
But it was a great backdrop because his inclination is to be selfish,
self-loving and narcissistic as he is was completely fed. At the
end of the day hes a better fella. He needs a wake-up call.
Did being in that confined space help the effect in your mind?
Or your performance?
Yeah, totally. There were a lot of aids. Having Joe (Schumacher)
there was a great help for me. I love him so much and he creates
a great environment for me where its okay to fail. You have
to do some shit before you can do something half decent. Then
there was the continuity and being in the phone booth. It was
so frustrating. It really did help. I had such nervous tension
on that gig. I was always boiling and I used to pace outside the
booth. The first A.D. would pick up a megaphone and say, You
got Stu? I go in, close the door and pick up the phone.
That was the gig, nine to five.
So would you have the same enthusiasm for Daredevil as for this?
[eyebrow raised in a telling of my distaste for that piece
of f***ing trash...]
No because I wouldnt have the passion with the character.
But Id work as hard. Bullseye is one dimensional, killer,
mercenary. You work your hardest at it but you dont go on
the emotional journey I went on in Phone Booth. Theres no
Is it getting harder to live with all the attention you are getting?
Not really because I still live at home, you know. Im very
lucky coming from where I come from. I have a totally different
life. I doesnt matter to anyone back home if I have eight
million dollars for a film and I go to a premiere and am (sleeping
with) some lovely looking girl. It doesnt matter. They know
what are the important things in life.. Its being good and
bold. Its not harder. My life, from the outside, if you
looked in would seem to have changed but, on the inside, it hasnt.
Im doing the same job, just with more money and bigger names.
Here's another actor that in a short time has worked with some
huge stars - I just had to ask...
Did you learn anything about the fame game from Tom Cruise or
Toms the loveliest fella. The most affable, loveliest man
and you would learn that he has so much respect for every human
being he meets and Ive learned things from watching him
on the set but its hard to pinpoint what you learn from
people but you learn from everyone. Like Bruce [Willis] you learn
to learn your lines. Bruce is dead on but he couldnt remember
a line to save his life on Harts War. I teased him and said
you better go home and get an early night. You have a word to
learn tomorrow. Hed look up and go f you, you Irish prick..
all in good fun. What I learned from Pacino, was after 40 years
of being an amazing actor and icon, hes well-read and so
smart, hes still hungry to get it right and hes still
pulling his hair out because he doesnt know if he got it
right. Hes still not sleeping at night because he loves
his job as much as he does. That was a huge lesson for me. I could
get lazy, just wait for the limo and not give a shit but I love
my job. Pacino was brilliant.
[ a vision of Colin swearing away as the limo is stuck in crosstown
traffic make me start to giggle....focus ....focus....]
I adore Al. So, do you see any real difference between say "
Hollywood" actors and Dublin actors?
Ive worked with actors in television at home before anyone
ever heard my name and Ive worked with fellas who have put
four kids through college by doing theater and a bit part in television.
Thats the deal. Im 26 and I have a limo. There are
guys who have done 300 plays 25 parts in t.v. and film. Thats
life. Thats important and real. Thats providing because
you love. They wouldnt take any of my shit.
Well you've certainly come along way. Did you ever expect to come
as far as you have?
No, no. Youd leave yourself for a big fall every day if
you were looking for that because you wouldnt get it the
next day. I always hope I get a call back, hope I get the part
each gig. It gets harder but it is important. Im chasing
something Ill never catch with this job but thats
okay. I dont want to catch it. Its okay.
Are you getting a giggle outta the eight thousand gossip columns
buzzin' about with different "Colin" stories?
Yeah, my sister bought this National Enquirer thing. It said that
in a Vons in Los Angeles, everyone was pissed because I
kept a line of people waiting because I was looking for my food
E: Food stamps? [laughter]
C: Thats what it said. It was hilarious. You have to have
I just saw you on Conan or something not a swear word to be heard!
E:You're pretty well behaved on TV - with the swearing - how do
you manage it?
[laughter] I have to think! I have to actually go, "Dont
curse! Dont curse!" I dont curse in a
violent way. Its just the way I talk.
there you have it Colin's charming, honest and one hell of a talent.
See Hart's War if you have not already.
Phone Booth is remarkable for his performance alone - the
rest is tre' generic. Sure he's evil sexy in that bad-boy-wanna-play-kiss-the-bare-Blarney-stone-hidden-down-here
way...but he's also very taken so on with the next smit.