Jeremy Irons on ‘Sunday with Miriam’

Miriam O’Callaghan interviewed Jeremy Irons and Lord David Puttnam on Friday 17 January 2014, at the Cork Airport, ahead of the ceremony at which Jeremy Irons was made an Honorary Corkman. The interview aired on Sunday 19 January on RTE Radio 1 on Sunday with Miriam.


Click on the audio player above to listen to the complete interview.

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Sunday with Miriam is also available on iTunes as a free podcast.

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Jeremy Irons Interview for CNN-IBN

While in Dubai for the Chivas Legends Dinner, Jeremy Irons was interviewed by CNN-IBN’s Sushant Mehta –

Click the link or photo below to watch the video:

Jeremy Irons talks about his journey as actor and a philanthropist Sushant Mehta, CNN-IBN | Dec 15, 2013

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Jeremy Irons on “Say Anything!” with Joy Behar

Jeremy Irons was interviewed on Joy Behar’s show “Say Anything!” on the Current television network, on Thursday 13 December 2012.

Here are a couple of clips:

Here’s a Behind the Scenes clip with Eliot Spitzer and Jeremy discussing the Claus von Bulow case:

http://current.com/shows/joy-behar/videos/behind-the-scenes-jeremy-irons-and-eliot-spitzer-on-the-claus-von-bulow-reversal-of-fortune-case/

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Emmys 2012: Jeremy Irons is the Original Mob Boss (Q&A)

From The Hollywood Reporter

The actor channels his innate “touch of melancholia” to create an addictive crime-family patriarch in Showtime’s epic drama “The Borgias.”

11:44 AM PDT 6/6/2012

by Marisa Guthrie

This story first appeared in the June 2012 Special Emmy Issue of The Hollywood Reporter.

A rainy April afternoon in New York finds Jeremy Irons, 63, chain-smoking hand-rolled cigarettes (he buys the tobacco at airport duty free shops) in his suite at the Upper East Side boutique Lowell Hotel. He is enjoying a moment away from his peripatetic work schedule: In addition to playing the lead on Showtime’s The Borgias, which shoots in Budapest, the British Oscar winner (Reversal of Fortune) also has completed work on Bille August’s Night Train to Lisbon, shot on location in Portugal, and is shooting Richard LaGravenese’s Beautiful Creatures in New Orleans. With his signature candor, Irons shares his take on the “bullshit” of fame, how a revealing dinner at the Vatican prepped him for his role as Renaissance Pope Rodrigo Borgia and the two American actors who have intimidated him.

The Hollywood Reporter: What drives you to keep working?

Jeremy Irons: It’s a bit of a drug. But it’s important that you have a very strong life with other passions that counter balances the work so that you know why you’re working. Fame and success are valueless. We have a culture where everybody wants to be famous. And you think, why? Because we’re being told that will bring happiness. And it’s all bullshit. Admittedly, it’s very nice wandering down the street and people saying, “Hi, love your work”; and going into a restaurant and people saying, “Oh, we’ll find you a table.” The whole world’s your village. But you have to put up with everybody wanting to know your business.

THR: How long do you see yourself playing Rodrigo Borgia?

Irons: I ask myself that every day. And I ask [creator and executive producer] Neil Jordan that every day. When they originally asked me to do it, they said, “Listen, it might run for four years.” And I gasped! But Neil is a filmmaker. So in a way, he’s educating himself to write for television. This makes the series a little slower than Showtime would like. But we’ve picked it up a bit, shorter scenes and more [snaps fingers] in season two.

THR: Do you like Borgia as a character?

Irons: You can’t play someone and not like him. You are inside him, and they are you. I like Borgia’s appetite; I like that he eats life, won’t take shit and that he has flaws. He’s not a good guy, he’s not a bad guy, he’s a guy. He’s power hungry; he doesn’t want to waste his time in this life. I share that with him. I’m not power hungry, just easily bored and want to make the most of the four score years and 10, if I’m lucky, while I’m on the planet.

THR: I read somewhere that when Borgias started shooting, you had dinner with an archbishop. What was that experience like?

Irons: Yes, it was at the Vatican. When he asked me in the door, he said, “You are now safe; no one can get you here; you are diplomatically immune.” I thought, “Well, that’s nice to know; I’ll put that address in my book.” We shared a bottle of wine in his kitchen, which was pretty spartan. And around 11 o’clock, we went to the roof to have a cigarette, and he pointed over the rooftops to a cell of lighted windows and said, “There’s Rodrigo Borgias’ modern counterpart; he’s still awake, doesn’t sleep much, sits and plays his piano.” Then we went downstairs, by which time [the archbishop’s] mistress had arrived.

THR: You’re allowed to have a mistress in the Vatican?

Irons: It would seem so.

THR: Who was this person?

Irons: It would be wrong to mention names. But all I can say is that nothing really has changed. We now think that the pope is next to God. Well, in those days the pope was head of the Church but behaved as any man would behave — or most men would behave.

THR: Are you Catholic?

Irons: Not really. I was baptized Church of England. My children are Catholic; my wife is Catholic. But I’m not really a club member, never have been. I go to Mass because I enjoy times of reflection. But I’m not a regular at all.

THR: How pigeonholed have you felt as an actor?

Irons: You’re always pigeonholed a bit. I do play the occasional American character, but I’m thought of as an “English actor.” I’m tall, slim and do bring a certain thing. You can’t get away from that. I’m never going to be cast as a sort of Danny DeVito character.

THR: Well, you have done a few projects with comedic elements.

Irons: Glad you’ve noticed! I seem to be known as enigmatic: Is he good, is he bad? Can we trust him, or is he just evil?

THR: But certainly no one has accused you of being Mr. Sunshine.

Irons: No, but I can show you a few films where I was Mr. Sunshine — although there’s always a touch of melancholia. I try not to put my feet in the footsteps that I’ve been in before. All actors have a certain smell. You can say that’s a Jeremy Irons role, that’s an Al Pacino role, or that’s a De Niro role. My biggest competition for roles is maybe Alan Rickman, in a way, or Bill Hurt. It’s all about the work you’ve done that adds up to your aroma.

THR: You’ve worked opposite fellow Oscar winners Meryl Streep, Kevin Spacey and Helen Mirren. Do better actors make you better?

Irons: Yes. It’s like tennis; it ups your game if you have someone playing good tennis against you.

THR: Have you ever been intimidated by one of your co-stars?

Irons: De Niro used to intimidate me. He doesn’t give any quarter, but he’s mellowed now. And Al Pacino is quite intimidating.

THR: Any leading ladies?

Irons: Intimidated me? No.

Email: Marisa.Guthrie@thr.com; Twitter: @MarisaGuthrie

Jeremy Irons attends opening of Nobu Budapest

Jeremy Irons attends the official opening of Nobu restaurant in Budapest, October 10, 2010.

British actor Jeremy Irons was on the red carpet at he Nobu Restaurant in Budapest on October 10, 2010, during the official opening. NOBU Restaurant had been opened in a business partnership between Nobu Matsuhisa, actor Robert De Niro and other managing partners. With the original restaurant in New York, the Nobu brand is now an empire that spans across the globe, from London to Tokyo, Las Vegas to Malibu, Milan to Miami Beach, Hong Kong to Waikiki, Melbourne to San Diego, Los Angeles to Dubai and Moscow to Cape Town.

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AFP PHOTO / FERENC ISZA (Photo credit should read FERENC ISZA/AFP/Getty Images)

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Exclusive! – Fan account of Jeremy’s appearance in Rome

Italian fan Ambra Corti has contributed this first-hand account of Jeremy Irons’s appearance at the Viaggio nel Cinema Americano, sponsored by the Festival Internazionale del Film di Roma.

[Translated from Ambra Corti's original Italian]

The event in Rome was wonderful! I never thought my emotions could be so great and overwhelming. Jeremy Irons is a wonderful actor and a very fine man, calm and charming and is one of the few actors capable of doing major showbiz productions and supporting charities beyond all expectations, a more extraordinary person there never was!

With his English manner, in the Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome, he was beloved by everyone, including me,with the power of his warm and seductive voice.

During the evening, we were shown some of the scenes from his films such as The Mission, Lolita, The House of the Spirits, Reversal of Fortune, M. Butterfly, The French Lieutenant’s Woman, Stealing Beauty, Kingdom of Heaven, Dungeons and Dragons, of course, accompanied with comments.

Of The Mission, speaking of the relationship he had with DeNiro, he said:
“At the time, filming went really slowly and DeNiro asked for a lot of takes. When I arrived on the set I was dissatisfied with the choice, I would not accept having to work with an actor who was not trained as I was. With every passing day our antagonism grew until it burst into a furious argument, but it subsided thanks to our producer. Since then we have become great friends.”

Of Lolita he said: “Many found it crazy that I could be like a villain, but I think there are people in the world capable of committing terrible acts and still be humorous, and if I’m not mistaken, here in Italy you have a Prime Minister …” he said with a grin. He did not say the name, but everyone in the room who knew all related, and all burst out laughing!  He went on to say: “I did not want to do Lolita because I was convinced that this film would cause me many problems with the passage of time. Adrian Lyne asked me to make this film for 2 years in a row, saying that if I had not accepted the part, he would not have made the film. Glenn Close was to convince me that it was a classic story and had all the right elements for a good movie and a good job.”

I remember that the presenters did ask a question about the Labour Party, who Jeremy once supported. Eventually, there were 4 or 5 questions from the audience (including me).

I remember one in particular, even though it was more of a statement than a question.
A lady, who was from Ischia, pointed out some events took place many, many, many years ago.
At the time, Jeremy was 17 years old and the lady was as well. She said that they had a [brief relationship or a date] and he played the guitar and she was fascinated.

Immediately after this lady, I made my application (Jeremy was directed to me when I raised my hand to speak) and I think I started in the worst and most embarrassing of ways. I said: “Carramba, what a surprise!” referring to the situation the first lady spoke of, and I do not think that he took that very well, but that may just be my impression.

When I asked the question I was very nervous! I wasn’t standing when I asked the question; I was sitting, because even if I was standing I would have fainted! I do not even know how I had the courage to do it, my heart was bursting, I surprised myself!

The real question that I did was: “You have not yet spoken of The Lion King! I want to know how do you dub a cartoon?”

He explained the various technical things that he had to do before moving on to comment directly on Scar. Of Scar he said: “It’s the ugliest animal! Because, unlike Mufasa (played by James Earl Jones) Scar is dry, skeletal, has a bad mane and tail hair has not, however Mufasa is strong, beautiful, strong with the bushy tail!”

Jeremy did not speak Italian at all and the woman sitting next to him on stage acted as his translator. At the conclusion, I and about twenty people went up to the stage in hopes of an autograph, but he was gone. It was a wonderful and unforgettable evening!

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