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1997 - Flavour Of The Month - The Brit Boy: Rupert Graves.

Author: Gabriel JP Goldberg.
Publication: Instinct Magazine.

Name: Rupert Graves.
Is always confused with: Rupert Everett.
Age: 34.
Occupation: Actor.
First caused our hearts to flutter in: A Room with a View.
Did it again in: Maurice.
And again in: Different for Girls [wearing head-to-toe leather--"I felt like the Pillsbury Dough boy."]

Current/upcoming projects: Intimate Relations (for which he won the Best Actor Award at the 1996 Montreal Film Festival) and Virginia Woolf's Mrs. Dalloway, with Vanessa Redgrave, due out in January.

On the rumour that he's gay: "I don't know how all that got started. Probably because I did Maurice and didn't say anything about [my sexuality]. It's nobody's business, anyway."
On whether he's ever been with a guy: "Yeah, yeah. But I've got a girlfriend now. We've been together 10 years."

On doing sex scenes: "They're horrible--always. Everybody says they should be fun but they're not. You're stuck in these silly positions, the camera guy is saying, 'Can you do this?' and you're like [makes mock humping gesture], 'Hello, Darling.' So, it's always a bit mad.

On being naked: "It doesn't scare me. I had a good introduction to it when I did A Room with a View because we had to do this pond scene [naked] which took three days to film. That first half day I was like, 'Oh, fuck! Why is this so embarrassing?" Well, it was cold, so that was really embarrassing, After a bit, I just got used to it and I started feeling really, um, superior, actually.

I've been naked on stage and I was naked in know. I've done a lot of the 'get me old pudger out.'"
And you whipped it out in Different for Girls, too: "Yeah. Although some shots were with the real thing and some with a prosthetic one."

Actor he'd like to work with: "Forest Whitaker, Marlon Brando."
Marlon in, now? "No. Although I loved his Michael Jackson impression in The Island of Dr. Moreau. It wasn't a great movie, but he was good in it."

On whether he watches what other actors do: " I think it's dangerous if you do. I think acting is about lack of self-consciousness. If I start thing, I've got to move in this certain way, then I'll just end up doing that. I'd rather just lose myself in what I'm doing."

On ever doing drag: "I played a drag queen bank robber in a film called Open Fire, which was based on a true story. Actually, I'd probably want to be Virginia Woolf if I wanted to be a drag queen. She had these tall, long legs--and the dress was kind of black with velvety things, very mad gothic."

His worst recurring dream: "I turn up at the National Theatre and they say, 'Right. We're going to do all of Noel Coward's plays.' And I say, 'Well, I don't know them.' And they say, 'You've got an hour to.' And I say, 'I can't possibly.' So they say, 'Well, you're on stage, just improvise, the other actors will help you out.' And they just push me onstage and I'm standing I just start."

What's it all mean? "I don't know."
You haven't analyzed it? "No! I don't analyze myself for God's sake! I've got a supermarket full of cans of worms in my psyche which I like staying closed.

They're stacked on the shelf and they're staying there."

©1997 Instinct Magazine.