Gerard Butler is the consummate performer. Most know him as the accomplished actor but he also sings. Rent the wonderful Warner Bros. musical, “The Phantom of the Opera.” In his latest film, “Hunter Killer,” Butler not only stars as American submarine Captain Joe Glass, but he is one of the movie’s producers. Most of the action takes place deep under the Arctic Ocean, where he is on the hunt for a U.S. sub in distress when he discovers a secret Russian coup is underway, threatening to dismantle the world order.
In an intimate setting at the JW Marriott in New York, the affable Butler was quite eager to talk about his movie that hits theaters October 26th.
Gerard, you have physically taken out terrorists, assassins, and the like in most of your movies. How does it feel just giving commands this time?
Lazy! [Laughs]. I said, ‘Can I have a bazooka, an RPG or something because I could still do some damage with that,’ and they wouldn’t let me. But it was kind of fun performing somebody else’s instructions. It was great for me to say, ‘You jump on that grenade. Do it again. Do it again. Do it again [Laughs];’ say a word and have everything unfold from them.
The first time I interviewed you was for “Phantom.” How have your performances the last 15 years informed Glass’ character?
I think every role informs the next. I remember when I met Alan Horn for ‘300.’ That was a historic moment for me, as well as ‘Phantom.’ I knew they wanted me for the part, but I hadn’t heard back from them and I was told to give him a call.
So I called and said—with the very question you asked me in mind—and said, ‘Every role I’ve played is what makes me right to play Leonidas. I’ve taken a bit of all my roles. So I have the power and the strength of the ‘Phantom.’ I have his darkness and his fury. I have a bit of ‘Dracula,’ a bit of a father, everything I’ve ever done. And if you let me play this role, I’ll bring all of that to this character.’
Needless to say, Butler brought it all and then some with “300” being one of biggest grossing and iconic films about that period.
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