During the press tour for Endless Love, Alex Pettyfer revealed his favorite romantic movies and dished on co-stars Bruce Greenwood and Gabriella Wilde. He also spoke about what true love means to him and what experiences inspired him to take on the role of David for this Valentine’s Day release.
What are some of your favorite romantic films? Did they help inform your character in this?
Alex Pettyfer: Love Story. Romantic comedy, I love Love Actually and Bridget Jones–please do not judge. What I love about this movie is that it’s about two young people falling in love for the first time and that naivety that they have which was very inspiring for me. A lot of these movies touch on Love Story which is one of my favorite love films. [They] touched on the basis of what they have to do when they fall in love and get married and have children. This is about pure love and the consequences that come with that being a young man and a young woman. This film was great. I’m 23 and will be 24 soon. I think when you’re my age you wanna have an aura of–you wanna be a man. To do this film you have to go back and be a child again and feel all those feelings for the first time and I think that’s a really scary thing for anyone. To act like a child to have those innate feelings that come to you.
You go mano a mano with Bruce Greenwood, did you find him intimidating at all?
Alex Pettyfer: People ask me ‘Why do you love making films’ and I always tell them ‘Because I love film’ I hope that I could call myself a movie buff and to work with Bruce Greenwood and even Robert Patrick is an incredible experience for someone like me. Someone who’s just starting out and hopefully will have longevity.
In the original Endless Love, David’s a little more volatile. How did you tone that down to make him more accessible?
Alex Pettyfer: We wanted to start the movie where David has made a conscious decision to change his life for the better because we access the movie to a point where he’s already kind of a little bit in love with Jade. When they meet that is just a moment that’s been waiting to happen. We didn’t want to indulge in something the he was a part of in the past. We just wanted it to be his past and something that loitered around him. I think every woman wants a man who’ll just love them, lust after them and we didn’t want to have any baggage with that. We didn’t want that baggage to be history that just came up in the movie. So you see David and hopefully during the best times in his life. This woman is an incredible thing for him and she makes him want to strive to be a better man and change where he’s going with his life and want to go to college.
What was it like working with Gabriella Wilde?
Alex Pettyfer: She’s amazing. She was actually part of this movie before I was. Just to work with her, it was great! Very easy going. She’s English. I’m English. There’s a connection we could build off there to become close and become friends. You can find it’s very hit and miss with that kind of stuff. I had a lovely time with her and hopefully it came across on screen.
Since the film is coming out on Valentine’s Day, what would your ideal Valentine’s Day date be?
Alex Pettyfer: My mom is coming out on Valentine’s Day and is gonna be my date. I said to her ‘What do you wanna do on Valentine’s Day?’ and she goes, ‘I wanna go see Endless Love’ I said, ‘Okay, I’ll set up a screening for you.’ She goes, ‘No, no screening for me. We’re going to The Grove and we’re gonna sit there and we’re gonna watch it in the movie theater.’ I was like, ‘All right…’
In the film, David stands up for the woman he loves. He even punches a guy out. Do you think there should be more guys like that out there?
Alex Pettyfer: I mean it’s so hard now a days because–I’m a hopeless romantic. I say this very loudly and proudly. We live in a world where it’s so accessible to date now which is great. I don’t judge that. We have so many ways of meeting people but romance. I like to meet someone, the chivalry when I’m out on a date, to actually be a gentleman. I think it’s becoming rarer and rarer. The experiences that I’ve had in my life between my dad and my brother and all the men in my life have all been gentleman. [We] have looked after women and I don’t know if I would go so far to say that we would punch someone in the face but we would definitely stand up for our ladies.
What are your fondest memories of your first love?
Alex Pettyfer: I think that first love defines you and your relationships for the rest of your life. I had a great first love. I mean my heart got ripped out my chest but I think that happens to everyone. When you fall in love for the first time. I know this cause I’ve experienced it, like the movie I just made, you’re naive to every feeling that you’re feeling. You’re almost obsessed with that person or addicted. Your life consumes of them and everything you wanna do revolves around them.
Do you still try to find the same emotion?
Alex Pettyfer: I think your emotion changes between person to person and as you get older. That’s why people become cynical because of the experiences they have had and whether they haven’t been able to let go and whether they’ve been cheated on and whether it hasn’t worked out. It’s so easy to turn around right now and say ‘Let it go’ and you may have good relationships and you may have bad and you know you just have to roll with it and still truly believe and not be cynical but it’s hard. You go through four relationships where you’re not happy, you’ve been cheated on or whatever. I’m talking in a broad scope of things. You have to still believe and I think that’s what upsets me the most and why I wanted to make this movie because I truly believe in love and I believe that every relationship starts the way that our relationship started with our first love when we were 16,17,18 you know?
Endless Love opens on February 14.