Interview: Actor Max Irons Dishes On His Modeling Career And His Upcoming Role In 'The Host'

by Daniel Reynolds · January 20, 2012

You know what they say: strike while the Irons’ hot! Rising Hollywood star Max Irons is a rebel with a cause: promoting Macy’s INC Spring 2012 Collection. Irons’ hand-selected line, peppered with nautical stripes and polo shirts, is perhaps inspired by his “prep” time in boarding school, from which he was expelled for getting caught in medias res with an ex-girlfriend, as he revealed on Jimmy Kimmel. No wonder he’s inspired by James Dean’s “effortless” cool. The tall, dreamy son of acting legend Jeremy Irons sits down with Guest of a Guest to discuss fashion, superpowers, and his breakthrough role in The Host, an upcoming film based on Stephenie Meyer’s (the author of the Twilight series) bestselling sci-fi thriller. Which got us thinking - could he be the next Robert Pattinson?

[Robert Pattinson, Max Irons, Photo via TheAestheticOmnivore and robertpattinsonwho]

What attracted you to INC? What does it mean for you to be the face of a fashion brand?

I’m very honored. But it’s lovely when you find yourself modeling clothes … that you feel comfortable in, and are very similar to what you wear. INC’s great because it takes fairly classic items and kind of brings them up to date and makes them modern, and kind of cool.

So you’re an actor by trade and profession. Did your work as an actor prepare you for modeling?

[laughs] No.

Were there any surprises or challenges you found?

How uncomfortable you can feel in your own body in front of the camera… just standing there, it was terrible. I don’t know why, but I suppose as an actor you’ve always something going on up here [points to head] which distracts you from just how physically awkward you can be as a human being.

Apart from INC, what designers do you like? What’s your style and what (or who) do you usually wear?

It’s always cold in London, probably similar to New York, and I have a Prada coat. It’s my favorite thing, it’s very simple … kind of classic. I like simple looks, not too much clutter. I like ACNE, A.P.C. Just keep it clean.

As an actor do you have any role models?

James Dean. He was effortlessly cool. Young Clint Eastwood. I suppose you never want to look like you’re trying to hard, and I don’t think they ever did. They just got it right.

So The Host! What attracted you to this role?

Science fiction. I’ve always loved science fiction. But I suppose it was the casting, the director, and Stephenie herself, which attracted me. I mean, I’m not too familiar with Twilight, but she’s definitely, she’s tapped into something … young people’s psychology. I don’t know what she does, but it really works. The Host is such a great book, and having Andrew Niccol, who is kind of famed for his science fiction, at the helm is comforting, and Saoirse Ronan, who was Oscar-nominated [when she was so young]. In the screen tests, she’s so good, it’s unnerving…

What stage of production are you at?

Going down there this afternoon. I know nothing!

*Author's note: The film is slated to shoot in Louisiana and New Mexico.

If you weren’t an actor, what field would you be in right now?

I’d probably be a teacher. I’ve always quite liked kids.

What are some of your favorite bars, nightlife in New York City?

I’m so bad with stuff like that. I tend to have friends, and I’ll say, “Take me somewhere,” and they say, “great.” Bars? I don’t know. I prefer house parties. I prefer … gatherings at people’s houses. Or just going to the pub, a real pub culture. Bars take a bit more effort, I think.

If you could choose a superpower, would it be the power of flight or the power of invisibility?

Definitely flight. If you’ve got a superpower, you want people to know about it. And with invisibility, you might start getting a bit weird… Would you be spying on people? Would you be going into girl’s locker rooms? You’d still be a pervert, even if you’re a super.

Any parting comments for Guest of a Guest?

Come and buy INC at Macy’s!