Jude Law feels his work options are widening as he gets older, and he revels in the complications.
The 41-year-old British actor — best known for his roles in The Talented Mr. Ripley, Cold Mountain and more recently Sherlock Holmes — says there is now “less emphasis on playing romantic leads.”
“You get over a certain age, and you’re more complicated anyway,” he said in an interview with the Associated Press. “So, I guess characters written for that age are more complicated, you know.”
Law said he likes to take risks by picking roles that terrify him, such as his much-acclaimed stint in Henry V in London’s West End last year.
“There’s this moment when you haven’t quite learned your lines, the play doesn’t feel like it’s coming together or at least you don’t feel that you’ve fully understood the role or indeed the piece yet, and everyone’s looking around for a way out, an excuse,” he said, recalling the rehearsal period.
“And yet you know that you have a set day ahead of you when you are going to open to the press — and indeed to the public — and it’s nothing short of terrifying.”
“It’s usually at that moment you question yourself, your job, why you’re doing this,” he added, “but it’s also an opportunity to sort of face failure and fear.”
Among Law’s current roles is playing a submarine captain in Kevin Macdonald’s Black Sea, due for release at the end of the year. Filmed on a 1970s submarine, Law says filming “was an amazing experience being that many people in such a small space, for that long. It brought on incredible energy and incredible drama.”
And next up, Law is to replace Michael Fassbender as Thomas Wolfe in Michael Grandage’s directorial debut, Genius.
“At the moment I’m up to my elbows reading up and around the wonderful Thomas Wolfe and his relationship with Max Perkins, his editor, who is played by Colin Firth,” Law said.
Law spoke to the AP as part of a promotional campaign for a short online film he appears in for Johnny Walker Blue Label scotch.