LOST Media Mentions - DarkUFO

Thanks to Sarah for the article.

What is reality?” asks Matthew Fox, with typical simmering intensity. “I think we would all benefit if we walked around in the world a little bit more conscious of the fact that we define our own reality, and that my reality is not the only one.”

Fox, the hunky 41-year-old star of Lost, is discussing the philosophical implications of his latest film, a multiperspective assassination thriller called Vantage Point. In it, Fox stars as a secret serviceman caught up in an assassination attempt on the US President in Spain, an event that unfolds cinematically from the different vantage points of eight key characters - others include a tourist (Forest Whitaker) and a news producer (Sigourney Weaver). It's a pulpy, streamlined thriller full of popcorn pleasures, but here, in a chic London hotel, it has provoked in Fox the deepest of ruminations.

“There are moments in my life when I feel very strongly that there's an absolute reality to what I've just experienced,” he says, running a hand over his smooth trademark crew-cut. “But then somebody right at that point will go, ‘No, that's not the way I see it.'”

It's worth noting that Fox says all this with a cool, laconic gravitas and a certain Marlboro Man chic. He wears scuffed black cowboy boots underneath a rumpled black suit, has huge hands and a light smattering of stubble and, as a native of Crowheart, Wyoming, is impossibly manly in that Midwestern John Wayne way. Worse still, he knows it. “I always had the sense that my time would come when I was playing men,” he says, reflecting on his current white-hot leading man status - as well as Vantage Point he has snagged a starring role as the sinister Racer X in the biggest blockbuster of this year, the Wachowski brothers' long-awaited Matrix trilogy follow-up, Speed Racer. “These are not young men I'm playing, they are not soft and ill-prepared men. They are men.”
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Indeed, it seems that Fox is sitting pretty inside the enormous casting gap that has opened up between the boyish heroics of action A-listers such as Tobey Maguire and Leonardo DiCaprio and the superannuated antics of retooled 1980s icons such as Sylvester Stallone and Harrison Ford. “I hear that there's a lack of actors in this age category,” confirms the man who made his name as the eldest sibling of an orphaned family in the hit 1990s teen TV show Party of Five. “But there's also a lack of guys out there, without wanting to trash anybody, who are willing simply to play the flawed leading man role. There's a glossiness around the way that certain people are doing their work.” He is, naturally, far too polite to name names, but he's surely thinking of Johnny Depp, no?

Fox adds that this has been a long time coming nonetheless, that he has been acting professionally for 15 years, and that there were moments when he almost quit. “There were really dark times when I'd say, ‘Goddamn it, man! I've had it, and I'd rather do something else!'” he says.

Acting was never a first love. He did some adverts while studying economics at Columbia University in New York, but it was strictly to pay for his tuition fees. He had come from a family of modest means, growing up on a barley farm with his parents and two brothers. Fox hoped to work in finance in New York but in the middle of a job interview for the investment bankers Bache & Co, he knew that he had made a terrible mistake. “Luckily, I wasn't too blinded by those expectations to see that there was no f***ing way that I was going to be able to do that for the rest of my life.”

So he got a job as a waiter, met his wife-to-be, a visiting Italian called Margherita Ronchi (“She still hasn't gone home!” he jokes), and began taking small parts.

He says that now, of course, he has regular pinch-me-I'm-dreaming moments thanks to the global popularity of Lost. Despite the ensemble nature of the show, with its Treasure Island premise, he is the de facto star and is regularly mobbed on promotional trips round the world. “To go to Moscow to promote a movie and have people holding up signs that say ‘Foxy' on them is still the most surreal thing for me,” he says.

Though he claims to be confused only occasionally by the show's narrative chicanery, he is, you suspect, looking forward to its demise (the last episode of the sixth and final series is planned for May 2010). “I am getting these cool offers now, and often I can't take them because of my responsibilities to Lost. I'm well aware that the success of the show is a big part of why I'm getting the offers and so my priority is to the show. But I won't be doing anymore television after Lost. That level of commitment to one character is just something I won't do again.”

He says he won't be doing any more TV after Lost and is planning his retirement from the small screen with glee. He is moving from Hawaii, where he films Lost and lives with Margherita and his two children, Kyle and Byron. The actor is moving to Oregon, for the seasons and the snow and “a chance to be near my brothers and my mom”.

Until then, Fox is hardly living a life of drudgery. “I've never had this moment where I wake up and go, ‘Yes, it's true, I was meant to be an actor!'” he says. “But right now, I'm doing it, I'm making a living doing it. And I'm f***ing loving it!”

Vantage Point is on general release from Friday

Source: Times Online

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