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Rupert Grint on Charlie Countryman: ‘It’s me running around with a strap-on’

The Harry Potter alumnus on playing a wannabe porn star called Boris Pecker, working with Shia LaBeouf and why he’d like to destroy Goblet of Fire

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Hi, Rupert. How’s New York?

Yeah, it’s fun. I miss home sometimes because I’ve been here since July, rehearsing and previewing It’s Only a Play. It opened this month on Broadway and we don’t finish until January.

Are you staying somewhere swanky?

They’ve put me in a pretty nice apartment downtown. I’ve made myself quite at home here. I got a pet tortoise.

What’s its name?

He’s called Madeline. I named him before I found out his gender. The best thing is that you don’t really need to do anything with him. He doesn’t even need water that often. Doesn’t like to be touched either.

Your first play was Mojo with Ben Whishaw and Daniel Mays. Now you’re in a show with Nathan Lane, Matthew Broderick and Stockard Channing. Didn’t you ever think about starting off small? Maybe a bit of am-dram?

Ha! I know, it’s pretty amazing working with all these geniuses. After Mojo ended, I didn’t want to do another play for a long time. It was fun but so exhausting. Then this came up and it was such an incredible cast, I had to do it. (1)

So you’re playing a theatre director?

Yeah, he’s a real nightmare, a completely ridiculous lord who is celebrated for his work but hates all the acclaim. He’s desperate for a bad review. On top of that, he’s a kleptomaniac and in therapy. An absolute mess.

Which aspects of that can you relate to?

Not too many, actually. I’m really the polar opposite. I can’t even relate to his look – the eye makeup and the mad hair. I dunno how ladies put up with makeup. I wear a lot of guyliner in the show. It’s really heavy duty and hard to get off.

Talking of mad hair, you once said that you weren’t allowed control of your own hair during the Harry Potter series. Did you make up for it afterwards?

Not really, no. Hang on – actually, yeah! One time. I let my mum cut my hair after the last Harry Potter film. She kind of dabbles in hairdressing. And it ended up being a total nightmare. She just kept trying to make it even and symmetrical but, in doing that, she kind of cut all my hair into a really weird shape. Ever since then, I’ve had a fear of scissors.

Does the Broadway audience have that strange habit of applauding when their favourite actor comes on stage?

Oh God, yeah! They do that all the time. It’s really weird.

Do you get applauded too?

[Sheepishly] Yeah. Though it’s more hesitant. It’s not instant like with Nathan or Stockard. There’s a bit of a delay. A ripple effect.

Oh well, better than nothing. How are the stage-door autograph hounds?

Oh, you know, they’re the usual suspects. It depends on how many Harry Potter fans come to the show that day. Usually, quite a lot.

Do you know what proportion of stuff you autograph ends up on eBay?

Um, I’m not sure. When I was doing Mojo, I signed some photos for this guy and then when I walked down the street a few minutes later, he was selling them on the street corner. He’d got them framed up really quickly first. I did think about going up to him and buying one but I chickened out.

If you were forced to destroy one of the Harry Potter movies for ever, which one would it be?

Actually, that’s quite easy: number four, Goblet of Fire. Nothing to do with the film, really. It’s a hair thing again – it’s just because of how my hair looks in it. It’s terrible. I’ve got no recollection of my hair ever looking like that.

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Tell me about your new film, The Necessary Death of Charlie Countryman.

This is the craziest film I’ve ever seen or been a part of. It was just ridiculous. You’ll have to be patient with me ’cos it was two years ago and I’m still trying to erase it from my mind – no, I mean piece it all together. So James Buckley from The Inbetweeners is in it and we’re best friends living in Bucharest. Shia LaBeouf comes there after his mother … no, after the ghost of his mother appears to him and tells him to find himself in Bucharest. He gets in trouble with gangsters and someone dies on his flight over – literally on his lap! This isn’t making much sense, is it?

You’re making it up as you go along, aren’t you?

It does sounds like it, doesn’t it? So Shia meets me and James in this youth hostel. I’m a wannabe porn star called Boris Pecker. My main plot is I take too much Viagra and require medical assistance. So it’s me running around with a strap-on.

What research and preparation did that entail?

I didn’t really do that much. I thought, let’s just go for it.

Did Shia LaBeouf do lots of mad things on set?

Er, yeah. Yeah, he did. I guess you’d call him a method actor. He kind of lived that part. It was … interesting. I think he’s talked about it a bit himself. Things happened which I probably shouldn’t go into.

As long as no tortoises were harmed in the making of the film.

God, no. It was a tortoise-free incident.


Original article found here:theguardian.com | October, 23rd 2014

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