Panty-dropper Clive Owen: I don’t worry about being likable

Here are some new pictures of Clive Owen out and about in New York yesterday, looking fabulous. Note: This is how Clive Owen looks on any given day. He’s not wearing that suit for a film role, he’s not carrying his tie because he’s about to strangle someone in some high-octane action shot. He really does walk around like friggin’ James Bond all the time. The man is such a panty-dropper, it’s not even funny. He’s stunning. Sigh. It’s a good day for some Clive.

Clive is actually doing some promotional duties for The Boys Are Back, his family drama based on the true story of a British ex-pat widower in Australia, learning how to raise his three sons alone. Clive was just in Toronto to promote the film, and he sat down for a good interview with the Vancouver Sun to discuss the role, his family and why he’s pining away for me (I wish):

You think of Clive Owen and you think of a handsome, elegant man in a tuxedo, or a rugged but charming spy. You don’t really think of a slightly disreputable sports writer throwing water balloons at his rambunctious seven-year-old son, or smacking him on the head in a no-holds-barred pillow fight.

That’s the Clive Owen of The Boys Are Back, a family drama, based on a true story, about a journalist name Joe whose wife dies of cancer, leaving him to raise a young son and a teenager. They live in a rambling house in Australia where a visitor might find a frozen chicken defrosting in the bathtub, and where dad and the kids cope with their grief by running amok: “free range parenting,” Joe calls it.

And here’s yet another Clive Owen — the one sitting in a Toronto hotel room whose bathtubs have obviously never seen a chicken, frozen or unfrozen — an imposingly sturdy-looking man, handsome and elegant in a black open-necked shirt, and also a father who knows what it’s like to deal with kids. The Boys Are Back seems like a departure, but Owen says it doesn’t feel like one.

“It felt like I was exploring a big part of my life that I haven’t explored in my work before,” he said on the eve of the premiere of The Boys Are Back at the Toronto International Film Festival.

“I am a parent of two girls and I’ve always seen that as very separate. I go off and make movies and the rest of the time I’m a parent. And this was a script exploring all that world.”

The Boys Are Back sounds like sentimental material — Joe’s wife dies at the beginning of the movie, and his young son (played by the remarkable Nicholas McAnulty) is alternately silent with mourning or off carelessly playing — but Owen says he took steps to make sure it wouldn’t be mushy.

“It was always a big thing for me, I had very strong antennae for any sentiment,” he said.

“I didn’t want it to be sentimental. I wanted to make it tougher in some areas and difficult, and show things not working and not worry that people would be upset by the way he was doing things.”

“I’m not one of those actors who worries about characters being likable,” Owen said. “I think it’s more important you understand them, it’s more important that you believe and understand. I think it’s a danger some actors fall into. He’s fallible. He’s not perfect. The whole film is about a guy trying to do the best he can. I’ll forgive him everything because he’s trying and he’s not perfect. None of us are.”

“I think there’s huge elements of this film that resonate with everybody. Anyone who’s lost anybody or grieved anybody will relate strongly, anyone whose parents separated . . . a lot of the film resonated with me and will resonate with a lot of people.”

He said he also enjoyed the way the movie depicted the difference between fathers and mothers. “A day with dad is inevitably different from a day with mom,” he said. “It just is. I think that the heavy, nurturing thing that a mother brings to a child is different from a guy. This is taken to the extreme, but there is almost an element of that with dad. I think it’s just an instinct thing. We’re not as overly protective as mothers are. Sometimes that’s not good, but I like that the film is about that, too.”

Owen’s daughters, who are 12 and 10, have seen the movie. Did they recognize his parenting style? “They’re just thrilled they can actually watch one of my movies because usually they can’t — they’re too young,” he said. “They’ll have a lot to catch up (on) when they’re 18.”

[From The Vancouver Sun]

Good Lord, I hope Clive’s daughters don’t see every R-rated film he’s been in. I love Closer, but I think seeing my dad in that way would totally warp me. Remember the scene with Natalie Portman in the strip club? Thinking about some of the quotes that came out of him makes me need to cross my legs – “I think it’s best I don’t attempt to touch you. I’d like to touch you. Later.” Yeah, his daughters shouldn’t see that.

Photo credit: (sunglass photos) and ANDERSON/VILA/ (without sunglasses)

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18 Responses to “Panty-dropper Clive Owen: I don’t worry about being likable”

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  1. LolaBella says:

    I love Clive Owen.

    That is all.

  2. Firestarter says:

    I used to think he was hot until I noticed that his face is strangely lumpy all over.

    He is also in some real dog movies too.

  3. LolaBella says:

    @Firestarter – Yes his face is a bit mishapen/lumpy LOL, but I like that he’s not ‘classically handsome’ by Hollywood standards, he’s always struck me as debonair and sophisticated.

    My three favorite movies of his are Greenfingers, Inside Man and Gosford Park.

  4. Firestarter says:

    @LolaBella- Yeah, he is handsome, no doubt, I guess I am just superficial about the lumpiness.

    I liked Inside Man and that one that he was in with Alba and Willis that was cartoony. My senility prevents me from remembering the name. I also liked him in King Arthur, I think that is the first movie where I noticed him.

    Shoot em Up, Derailed and Chidren of Men were AWFUL!

    Was he in one of the Bourne movies?

    *checking ImbD*

  5. ash says:

    Sin city Firestarter.

  6. LolaBella says:

    I liked Sin City as well and yes, he was the assassin The Professor in the first Bourne movie.

    Derailed had the potential to be a good movie, but it lost itself halfway through and turned into a complete clusterf**k.

    If you get the chance you should definitely rent Greenfingers; Helen Mirren was in that one as well as Gosford Park.

  7. Firestarter says:

    Thanks, Sin City it is.

    I agree, Derailed could have been good. The initial idea was right, but I think both Owen and Aniston were piss poor in their respective parts and the movie did get derailed at some point badly. I actually found myself getting embarrassed for both of them.

    I will take your suggestion LB and watch both those movies.

  8. Kaiser says:

    Firestarter, seriously, try Closer too. Julia Roberts is pretty annoying and miscast in it, but Clive plays such a sexy, arrogant bastard. And he has all of the good lines. Love. It.

  9. HS says:

    I’d totally hit it.

  10. Heidi Ho says:

    Hello hotness, we like you.

  11. Firestarter says:

    Thanks Kaiser, I will add that to my viewing list. I forgot about Closer. I think I remember hearing it was kind of good. I will try to ignore the fact that Roberts is in it! : )

  12. the original kate says:

    oh, the things i would do to that man…*blush*

  13. MGD says:


    And I’ll take him lumps or NOT.

  14. truthSF says:

    I really liked him in Beyond Borders. I wish I was Angelina Jolie’s character, so he could talk to me anyway he wants, and then we’ll have hot crazy sex. But overall, the subject matter in that movie was way too real and depressing.

  15. orion70 says:


  16. Selena says:

    Ugh, this man bores me! His voice makes me want to go to sleep and his face reminds me of a horse! I can’t help it, that’s what I think of. Has he had work done around his eyes? I hope he’s not fighting age. That’s just tacky.

  17. Kathie says:

    Clive Owen is lava-hot! I wonder if all us droolers could focus our mental energies in concert with each other to make all men look like Clive Owen by..oh say 5:30 pm est tomorrow! The title of the article says it all! Clive Rules!!!

  18. I like Clive Owen’s style