Charlize pines for her angel while promoting new film Prometheus
00:41 GMT, 13 April 2012
Charlize Theron stars in the new film Prometheus
Charlize Theron cradled her arms and rocked them back and forth. She was, she told me, pining for her baby son Jackson.
‘It’s amazing what you can do with one arm,’ she joked.
‘I hold Jackson in one, and we play and do things with the other. It’s like he’s permanently attached to my body,’ she said of the baby she recently adopted.
The Oscar-winner was in town to help introduce scenes from Prometheus, Ridley Scott’s prequel to his film Alien.
Charlize plays a space exploration company executive in charge of a flight that will, with luck, discover the origins of life on Earth.
You just know bad stuff is going to happen. I mean really bad, scary stuff. Charlize laughs when I beg her to tell me just some of that stuff.
‘Baz, I’d have to kill you if I told you! Of course stuff happens, but that would spoil the film for you — and everyone — if I revealed it. You have to wait and be patient.’
Easier said than done. If there’s no screening beforehand, I’ll be at the world premiere in London on May 31.
The picture opens in the UK on June 1 and so does another film Charlize is in called Snow White And The Huntsman.
In that one, she plays an evil queen called Ravena who wants to rip out Kristen Stewart’s heart. What fun. Having two movies opening on the same day.
Charlize loved meeting up with her Prometheus co-stars Noomi Rapace and Michael Fassbender.
‘There was a lot of waiting for shots to be set up and we had some laughs while we were waiting. We had some fun times.’
Fun times But once again, Charlize is coy. That girl knows how to keep a secret.
Once more unto the breach, Tom
As he scrolled through his iPhone, Tom Hiddleston came across a photograph of a hardened warrior, face bloodied and caked with mud. Then he launched into the most famous war cry in literature: ‘Cry “God for Harry, England, and Saint George!”.’
It’s from the Bard’s ‘Once more unto the breach’ speech, as the young king primes his men to summon up the blood for battle.
‘Real blood,’ Hiddleston joked, as he thumbed the photographs out of sight and calmly strolled out of the Arts Club in Mayfair.
Fighting fit: Tom Hiddleston as Henry V who with just a handful of men went on to defeat the French at the battle of Agincourt
The picture I’d seen was of the 31-year-old actor as Shakespeare’s courageous monarch Henry V (right — and, cleaned up, above) who, with a handful of men, went on to defeat the French at the Battle of Agincourt.
‘We wanted Tom all bloodied, like a real warrior,’ explained Pippa Cross, one of the executive producers of Henry V. She added that other Henry Vs were, perhaps, a bit more sanitised.
‘This has to work for today’s audiences and you’ve got to show war in all its horror, as well as the pageantry.’
Hiddleston became fully immersed in
Henry when he was chosen to play him by two leading directors: Richard
Eyre and Thea Sharrock.
Eyre’s two films, Henry IV Parts I and II, Hiddleston plays the
rebellious, irresponsible Prince Hal, with Jeremy Irons in the title
role as his father, Simon Russell Beale as Falstaff and Julie Walters
as Mistress Quickly.
In character: Hiddleston became fully immersed in his role as Henry during filming
Then, in Sharrock’s Henry V, he’s the brave king who licked the French.
The cycle of Shakespeare films are a tetralogy, comprising Richard II (with Ben Whishaw in the title role and Rory Kinnear as Bolingbroke), followed by the Henry IVs, and Henry V.
They’re being shown on BBC2 as part of the BBC’s Shakespeare season under an umbrella title The Hollow Crown. It’s a line from Richard II, although it was used by Royal Shakespeare Company legend John Barton for his dramatic historical anthology.
Sam Mendes, who executive produced the films through Neal Street Productions (BBC and NBC Universal International are the other backers), asked Barton for his blessing to use the title.
‘It’s a perfect framing title because it’s a look at these three monarchs and the terrible machinations that went on,’ said Pippa Cross, also from Neal Street. She also pointed out that it chronicles the downside of kingship as well as the glories.
Hiddleston, who will be seen soon as the villainous Loki in The Avengers, was struck by how brave Henry V was at Agincourt.
‘He was completely outnumbered, on foreign turf.
‘His men were wounded, exhausted, starving; while the French were well fed and well kept.
‘But Henry takes the riskiest decision of his life and decides to attack.
‘It was go big or go home. Go big won the day,’ Hiddleston said.
Watch out for…
David Bedella, who won awards for his performance as Satan in Jerry Springer — The Opera.
Bedella will star as drag queen Arnold Beckoff in the new production of Harvey Fierstein’s three-act play Torch Song Trilogy, which Douglas Hodge will direct at the Menier Chocolate Factory in Southwark, London, from May 30.
Fierstein actually appeared in the original U.S. production of his work, while Hodge starred in La Cage Aux Folles (he won an Olivier and a Tony for it), which featured a book written by . . . Fierstein. Sara Kestelman will play Arnold’s mother.
Ms Kestelman is very busy. She moves into the Donmar after the excellent production of The Recruiting Officer ends its run this weekend, where she will be seen in Peter Gill’s production of Making Noise Quietly. She’ll rehearse Torch Song during the day.
David Edgar’s play Written On The Heart, which is transferring from the RSC’s Swan Theatre to the Duchess in the West End, where it begins performances next Thursday.
It’s a play about the creation of the King James Bible and it has been directed by Greg Doran, the artistic director designate of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
Thelma Holt, who is producing with impresario (and Everton Football Club chairman) Bill Kenwright, stressed that Written On the Heart ‘is not about religion’.
‘It’s about people trying to find compromise and power,’ she told me. She said the play is really a thriller which reaches across several decades.
‘The end result was a bestseller,’ she said.
Ms Holt explained that she doesn’t usually say her prayers — but she did pray that theatre owner Nica Burns would purchase the Palace Theatre from Andrew Lloyd Webber and this, indeed, came to pass.
‘My cup runneth over,’ Ms Holt exclaimed. I’ve read that line somewhere before.
Liev Schreiber, Sally Hawkins and Romola Garai, who will star in a sci-fi film called The Last Days On Mars.
It’s being directed by Ruairi Robinson on locations in the UK and Jordan (and sets at Elstree studios) from mid-July. It’s about a group of astronauts lost on a space station.