TF Archives

Jeff Bridges - What's Up, Dude-

Author: 3D
Tuesday, October 14, 2008

3D talks to Jeff Bridges, starring as Sharps Magazine editor Clayton Harding in the upcoming comedy How To Lose Friends and Alienate People, alongside Simon Pegg, Kirsten Dunst and Megan Foxx.

How would you describe your character in the film-
Clayton is a fellow who was very like Simon Pegg's character, when he was of a similar age. He was snubbed by 'Society', and being a witty guy he used that snub to fuel his attack on 'Society' in a very funny way. It served him well, professionally; he developed the magazine called Snipe, and he became Simon's character's hero. Then as Clayton got more involved in 'Society', hanging out with people he used to send up, he starts to lose his edge and becomes part of the clique that he was once critiquing. He misses having that edge - like missing his youth - and sees a bit of himself in Simon's character, so they develop this love/hate relationship.

Can you see a big future for Simon Pegg in Hollywood-
I think so. I've loved all the films of his I've seen, and he does a terrific job of committing to the character. I think he's a great actor and has a lot more besides what he's shown us so far. He's a writer, a musician, and has a very serious side as well. I look forward to his career. He's doing the Star Trek movie now I believe. He will soon be at those Star Trek conventions!

Speaking of conventions, Lebowski Fest is looming in San Francisco. I understand you've been to at least one-

I went to one maybe a year or two ago in Los Angeles. These two guys, Will and Scott, were at some convention and were having a really boring time, so they decided to think of a new convention that would be really fun. So they came up with Lebowski Fest, which has been going on a couple of years now, all over the States. It's two days of bowling, music, heavy partying, and all these people are dressed up. You see some of the most obscure references, and the movie plays on the walls all the time. When I attended, I got a little band together and played, unannounced. I consider it my Beatles moment! I came out and played to this sea of Dudes! It was fun. I hope to return and do some tunes with John Goodman. We'd love to do that, one day!

You've played so many roles over the years, but only one has spawned a convention. Do you feel as though people love The Dude most of all-
I don't think of it that way. I was nominated for an Academy Award for playing a President, which is about as un-Dude as you can get! Then Iron Man, too, was very un-Dude-like. I love to shake it up and keep my own persona slightly confusing. That way people will be able to slip me into the character at hand.

Now you've signed up for a Tron sequel, 25 years after the first film-

Yeah, and that's another unique, wild experience that was too good to turn down. Engaging in that world again feels just like it did all that time ago. Basically, I'm still a child, I love being childlike, and here was another chance to play with these crazy toys; I get sucked right in. And with the cutting-edge technology, it makes it exciting. Doing the teaser trailer, which we did for Comic-Con, I had my first experience of Motion Capture. And that's turning the industry on its head. It's amazing being part of that. It's so amazing. Back when we made Tron there was no internet, no cell-phones. But now we have Motion Capture, so I think we'll get a far more successful version of the story, which is someone literally getting sucked into a video game. Like when we did King Kong in the '70s, one minute you'd have a shot of Rick Baker in this big suit and then you'd cut to this 80-foot stiff model, and they looked nothing alike. Compare to that Peter Jackson's King Kong! Now the technology is there and they did a really wonderful job. I thought they created a beautiful Kong. So I hope that'll be the same for Tron.

How to Lose Friends and Alienate People opens in cinemas 23 October. For more information visit Stay tuned for next week's interview with Simon Pegg.