How Simon Pegg became a big fish
In the darkened interior of Shepperton Studios in Surrey, Simon Pegg wraps a robe around his fatigued body, stretches back on his personal recliner, and lets his entourage minister to his every need.
Right now, this means a make up artist tending to his tired eyes and a PR scuttling over with a message to the effect that, had a note from Bruce people that he is supportive of the project Nearby lingers a former rock star and scion of an acting dynasty, hanging on his every word. But he have to wait Pegg is having his nails done. Next: a hairdo. What this? Another A lister has been in touch? Yes indeed Rastamouse is free for a meeting.
the actor nods coolly, the kind of company I keep these days. It seems the Caribbean accented rodent star of CBeebies is one of Pegg circle probably because of Pegg infant daughter. met Mr Tumble the other week, too, at Legoland. He was ever so nice. He said someone who used to be Laurel and Hardy dresser got in touch and said he was a big fan of his slapstick. Outside, it is August 2011, and wet.
Pegg last on screen playing a Thompson twin in Steven Spielberg 3D, motion capture Tintin has worked hard to make this oddball comic film come to fruition. He been involved from its earliest days, and his association helped secure the support of Universal, the studio with sell pandora charms whom Pegg made Shaun Of The Dead, Hot Fuzz and Paul. Now he crammed filming of AFFOE into the hair breadth gap in his schedule between completing work with Tom Cruise on Mission: Impossible Ghost Protocol and beginning preparations to join, once more, the crew of the Starship Enterprise.
Today, grey suburban London in a mock up of a ramshackle flat full of Victoriana tat. Tomorrow, Tom private jet and a transfer to the shiny deep space of JJ Abrams second Star Trek reboot. Even if he weren best friends with Coldplay Chris Martin, life for Simon Pegg solidly middle class, Gloucester born son of a civil servant and a musician would be good.
But be reassured, Spaced fans: Pegg has not LA Not quite. Not yet. The recliner is a decrepit sunlounger, matched only in shabbiness by the robe, a dressing gown of indeterminate vintage and design. The make up artist is here to render his eyes not effervescent and twinkly, but more pouchy and red raw. And on the set of AFFOE, his nails done means having muck, grime and greasepaint crammed under the talons Pegg has been ordered to grow out the better to mirror Jack disintegrating mental state and awful personal hygiene. The hairdo is more a hair don but the straggly ginger beard is the actor own. And that rock star/acting royalty offspring is Crispian Mills, frontman with Britpop era also rans pandora charms near me Kula Shaker, son of actress Hayley Mills and director Roy Boulting, and grandson of Sir John Mills. The 39 year old is co directing AFFOE with Chris Hopewell, a Bristol based animator who has worked on videos for the likes of Radiohead and The Killers.
totally amazed by Crispian because at first I was like, well, that the Kula Shaker guy, admits Pegg of the first time film maker. He known Mills socially for more than a decade, courtesy of the actor wife Maureen. She worked for the band record label in Glasgow, her hometown which also explains Pegg facility with the Scottish accent of the Enterprise chief engineer, Montgomery Scott.
of course, Pegg continues, you actually think about it for a second, of course he good at this it in his blood. His mum came in to see us and was like, know this place She filmed [1966 comedy] The Family Way here, and actually met Roy Boulting on that bloody stage!
Mills initial idea for AFFOE was a short film, based on Robinson 43 page novella. But his research into the terrible crimes of The Hendon Ogre and Long Ear have loosened Jack grip on reality. Now he imagines knife wielding fiends in every corner of his fetid flat.
Mills then re imagined his script as an hour long TV drama. Pegg told him that if he expanded it further, into a feature film, then he be interested in taking the role of Jack. Crispian went off and came up with this third act. It one of the most interesting and ingenious scripts I ever read, Pegg says with genuine marvel of a screenplay that also encompasses stop motion interludes overseen by Hopewell. such a little tale, this wilfully short story, it expanded into this sort of epic! the leading man beams.
It showtime on set. Pegg bounds into the mock up of Jack flat. Hopewell, who is also the film production designer, has imagined the chaotic interior as a reflection of Jack tortured mind. He has also, he acknowledges, imagined it in part homage to the interior of Withnail Camden flat, notably the legendarily toxic kitchen sink big nod Hopewell says.
Half a dozen or so crew gather around Pegg as he careens from taps to table to cooker, attempting to wash and dry Jack meagre wardrobe. The actor is juggling knife, basin full of suds, socks, pants and hob controls, all the while ranting away to himself. Any minute now, the oven will explode in his face. It a kinetic, clownish performance, one that harks back to Pegg early days as a stand up while a drama student at Bristol University, and on the small screen in Spaced, the cult late Nineties Channel 4 sitcom written by the actor with co star Jessica Stevenson and directed by Edgar Wright (director of Shaun and Hot Fuzz).
Then Pegg is back in his recliner. What should we call AFFOE? A gothic comedy? It different to anything I done before. I mean, I hesitate to call it a comedy we came up with this idea of psycho comedy, a play on psychodrama, it is funny. But it also pretty scary.
Zoom forward because that how Pegg life pandora beads 2013 is going these days to May 2012. It 8.30am in the Sunset Tower hotel in Los Angeles. Assiduous sometime Hollywood player that he now is, Pegg should have been in the gym already. But he full of flu, so an interview it is.
Last week Pegg, 42, finally wrapped shooting on the second new Star Trek film, the follow up to the almost $400million grossing 2009 blockbuster. What else can he tell us about it? Not much, it seems. time we had the benefit of being able to hit the ground running we spent some time in the first one re establishing the characters. Now we have a fully set up group of people that we can just get on with straight away. So it ups the ante slightly, and we all had more to do. So it totally incumbent on us to not drop the ball. It would be a disaster if it wasn as good as or better than the first one. Is there more screen time for Scotty? in it from the beginning. In the last one I was the last member of the crew to be and brought in. So in this one, we all together from the top.
Abrams, the Lost creator, Super 8 director and all round powerhouse of American TV and film, remembers the thrill of seeing Shaun Of The Dead, Pegg at the cinema. was just blown away by Simon sense of humour but also by his acting skills, Abrams tells me. wasn just funny. He was also surprisingly emotional and convincing. I remember thinking, s, this guy can probably do anything Abrams accordingly cast Pegg in his M:I III (2006), selfishly I wanted to meet that guy. And I knew he would make any scene he was in better.
This time, Pegg isn the only Brit in the world of Starfleet. Benedict Cumberbatch has been cast as a villain. Pegg is full of praise for Cumberbatch baddy, whom he describes
as just another disgruntled alien. It a really interesting sort of thing, he squirms. I can talk about it. Given internet rumours that Cumberbatch has been cast as Kirk and Spock nemesis Khan, will this be a very different of Khan from the 1982 film of the same name? not Khan, replies Pegg, annoyed. a myth. Everyone saying it is, but it not.
Is that misinformation from the famously secretive Abrams camp? I think people just want to have a scoop. It annoys me it beyond the point to just ferret around for spoilers all the time to try to be the first to break them, says Pegg, a fanboy fanboy who wrote an autobiography called Nerd Do Well and who seems to have forgotten that part of the thrill of being a comic book/film/sci fi fan is about getting as many details as possible in advance. just spoils the film, he complains. masquerades as interest in the movie but really it just nosiness and impatience. You just want to say, f off! Wait for the film!
It perhaps no shock that, in some regards, Pegg has gone over to The Other Side. The quintessentially British Shaun Of The Dead (2004) and Hot Fuzz (2007), co written with Wright, were hits on both sides of the Atlantic. The American set Paul (2011), co written with old pal and co star Nick Frost, was directed by Greg Mottola (Superbad) and starred US comedy stalwarts Seth Rogen, Kristen Wiig and Jason Bateman. His roles in the Mission: Impossible and Star Trek franchises have made him part of the furniture in Hollywood.
As his two million plus Twitter followers will attest, Pegg is assiduous in keeping everyone abreast of his various projects, meetings and hookups with the great and the good of popular culture. It one reason why he loved being in LA these past five months, even though he, Maureen, their daughter and dog had moved from north London into their new Hertfordshire home only a month before shipping out to the US.
As we speak the women in his life will be arriving back home they returned to the UK a little earlier than Pegg. It been the family second sojourn in California: while Pegg was filming Paul in New Mexico two years ago, they all shipped over even the dog. And, in fact, his daughter she was born in Los Angeles during filming.
Pegg has never been one to discuss his private life. Nonetheless, he wrote that autobiography didn it open a Pandora box for interviews that the thing, that apparent hypocrisy, he admits. there plenty of stuff I don talk about. I mention the fact that my parents broke up but I don really go into what that was like. And I can always fall back on your own f business.
Pegg is all about the work, which is why LA a business town suits him down to the ground. don have that LA snobbery that some people have. I really like it. Everyone doing stuff here. If you want to meet somebody if you think, s, I like to work with that person you can make a phone call and you have dinner. And if you get on, you get a project going. It so proactive. Everything so in motion, whereas at home it a struggle to get anything on the go, because we have so few resources.
everybody here. It where the business is centred. If you want to meet Christopher Guest, you go and have lunch.
And if you want coffee with Tom Cruise, presumably you can just ring him up, too. Last autumn Pegg undertook a globe spanning, 10 day, private jet promotional jaunt in support of the latest, well received M:I outing. What can he tell us about him? Quite a bit, as it happens.
can only go by my experience and he just a consummate professional, and very nice person. And kinda regular. I like it when the exterior drops a little and you just see normal Tom Cruise. I watched the Super Bowl with him and watched him get all het up. But he extraordinary a guy who has entirely constructed himself for his business, and that why he so good at it, and so successful.
He applies himself 100 per cent in every facet of his existence.
With Cruise, of course, public perceptions are not only by his superstar status, but also by Scientology. But Pegg insists that the actor in their seven months pandora jewelry order online together, came up Nor did he see any sign of the Cruise is said to pitch on sets to practise Scientology.
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