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An Interview with Orlando Bloom, handbag.com, August 2003
by Pippa Smith

Gorgeous Kentish lad Orlando Bloom has become a Hollywood phenomenon since playing Legolas in Lord Of The Rings. Here, he talks about women, work and new flick Pirates Of The Caribbean.

How does it feel to be skyrocketing in Hollywood right now?
It's weird, isn't it? I don't know. I still can't quite believe it, and it's a weird time for me right now. I feel really lucky for the opportunity to work because that's all I ever wanted to do, just work...

Do you get overwhelmed?
Yeah, totally, all the time. That's the hardest thing - you start to live the dream but it's not quite what you thought it was going to be and there's a lot of overwhelming stuff that comes with it. I suppose that there are adjustments I have to make, and I'm working on it.

What's the hardest thing about making movies?
There's always a collective group that has to come together to make a movie - 200 people or more, sometimes. If you think that an artist starts with a blank canvas and paints something, or a sculptor does it all on his own, and then compare that to making a film... Getting a group of people to have a like mind, all going for the same goal and going for it with the same energy is one of the hardest things. You don't want too many cooks in the kitchen, but you need to have a few cooks to get the movie made! It's an amazing feat.

How do you feel about your heart-throb status?
The heart-throb thing has only really recently become apparent to me and I hope that it won't stop me from making more interesting career choices. I feel like there's a certain rite of passage associated with this industry... like Johnny (Depp) went through on 21 Jump Street or something. He created his heart-throb status unintentionally, but that led him to being able to do whatever he likes. People love to work with Johnny and I'm hoping that I'll get the same opportunity.

Is it awesome being with women who most guys just dream about?
Oh, I feel really lucky because I've always liked women. I love women. I grew up with my mother and sister. I get to work with Keira Knightly in Pirates Of The Caribbean, and to answer your question, I do feel grateful to be around beautiful women. All guys love beautiful women, and I get to work with Diane Kruger in Troy, with Liv Tyler and Cate Blanchett in Lord Of The Rings and, sure, beautiful women are amazing.

What did you think of Johnny Depp's character in Pirates Of The Caribbean?
Johnny amazes me. He took a character that read like your average, swashbuckling pirate and created a magical, hilarious, drunken, sea-legged Keith Richard-type number. He was so courageous with that role. It could've gone wrong, but he just bit the bullet and took it all the way.

Is he an inspiration for you?
Oh yeah, absolutely. He's been my guideline, really, as a young actor, and I think that any young actor of my generation will tell you the same thing. We look at Johnny Depp and we think, 'There's someone who's probably one of the best-looking guys on screen and he manages to morph into these characters that he plays and become a completely different person.' There are lots of talented actors out there doing that, but Johnny's cool. He's Johnny Depp!

He's said that he doesn't like to see the final result of his films...
Yeah, I know. I talked to him about that as well. It's fascinating. He doesn't read magazines, either, but then, neither do I. I mean, I do when they're around, but I just don't follow popular culture, really.

Is Johnny Depp's modest approach to acting unusual?
Unusual? It's beautiful. His modesty is what makes him who he is and it's so inspiring for me to see it first-hand. It's the same with Brad (Pitt) actually. I'm working with him on Troy. Johnny and Brad are similar like that - very gracious.

What's your strength when it comes to acting?
I don't know. I try to keep it very truthful. I try to play the human element of a character... but you know what? I'm 26 and still figuring it all out.

Did you ever dream that this would be your career?
No, no... And you know? I've chosen to work and everything's happened for me and I feel really grateful for it, but I haven't made a conscious effort to get involved in that. I've just responded to the material. Lord Of The Rings was a no-brainer, obviously. I did Black Hawk Down to work under Ridley Scott, and Ned Kelly is a smaller kind of film...

Have you gone back to New Zealand to re-shoot Lord Of The Rings: Return Of The King?
Yes, I have, and it was the third and final time. Peter (Jackson) wanted to do this thing with Legolas that he'd kind of done in the first two films, where my character runs over the back of the cave troll or slides down the stairs or jumps, and he had an idea that he wanted to combine all of that and create a really great moment for Legolas in the third movie, and so we shot that.

What's your favourite type of movie to work on?
It was fun to be in Pirates Of The Caribbean, but Lord Of The Rings was amazing. The world they created for that was my favourite.

What do you do with your time off?
I don't have much time off, but when I do, I try to just enjoy hanging out with my friends and family, catching up on movies, reading some books and listening to some new music. When you're away on location you don't get access to all of the stuff that you do when you're at home, so I try to catch up with things I might've missed out on. A lot of that is just spending time with the people who are important to me.