MensJournal.com — There he is, a 33-year-old movie star, improbably handsome, out drinking with friends on a drizzly autumn Saturday in London, chatting up girls, getting a little buzzed, letting loose – an indulgence he’s just recently begun to allow himself. Chris Pine has a week’s worth of stubble going and a gray knit cap pulled low over his dirty-blond hair, but inevitably, he keeps getting recognized.
Well, sort of.
One of Pine’s pals is wearing sneakers, so they’re having trouble getting into a club. They’re stuck waiting in the rain when the hostess spots Pine and waves them through. He thanks her, and she offers a fame-besotted smile. “Don’t worry,” she says, gazing into familiar pale-blue eyes. “I loved you in The Hangover.” Bradley Cooper – in her club!
Then there’s the guy who tells Pine how totally psyched he is to be at the same bar as Chris Hemsworth – Thor himself. And yet another dude, who asks Pine what movies he’s been in – Pine lies, tells him, “Captain America.” “Oh, my God, yes!” the dude says, thrilled to be meeting Chris Evans.
Worst of all, there’s the pretty young British woman. “I’m going to guess you’re an actor,” she says. “You’re American, you’re here on business .?.?.”
“That’s an incredibly on-the-nose guess,” Pine replies.
They chat, and it seems to be going OK, until she starts apologizing: “I’m so sorry,” she says. “I don’t know who you are.”
“Sweetheart, it is totally cool,” he says, thinking, “and I have no idea who the fuck you are.” But she keeps doing it, until he loses patience: “If you apologize one more time, I’m going to have to leave this conversation.”
“I’m sorry,” she blurts, for the fifth time. Pine walks away.
“I clearly haven’t made a good enough impression on people,” Pine says the next day, laughing. “My go-to line when it’s the résumé game is that I’m either Chris Evans or Ryan Reynolds.”
To clear up any confusion: Pine is the guy who plays a young Captain James T. Kirk in the new Star Trek movies, the one who’s about to take on the late Tom Clancy’s CIA-analyst hero in January’s Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit. He held his own against Denzel Washington in the runaway-train flick Unstoppable, started his movie career as a tween-eye-candy prince opposite Anne Hathaway in The Princess Diaries 2. He’s been in London since August shooting Into the Woods, a film version of the Stephen Sondheim musical fairy tale, in which he plays another prince, this time the one who gets with Cinderella.
There are so many of them now, these blue-eyed, blond-haired, movie-star Chrisses and Ryans, each more jacked and CGI-perfect than the next, and Pine is uncomfortable with what he sees as an unhealthy homogeneity. “The mass audience doesn’t want to see you if you aren’t perfect,” he says, leaning against a brick wall in Tinello, a posh Italian restaurant dark enough to cast unnecessarily flattering shadows on his cheekbones. “If you don’t look a certain way, if you don’t have big pecs and great skin and the perfect eyes. And it’s unfortunate, because kids are growing up with body image dysmorphia because not everyone is represented on the screen.
“I get it,” he adds, sitting there in a gray T-shirt, loose at the neck, with his own big pecs and great skin and perfect eyes. “For me to talk shit on it? I’m one of the guys!”
He’s too smart, too polite to actually say it, but it’s pretty clear that Pine wants to be the best, the deepest, the most lasting of the Chrisses, if not of his whole generation of leading men. “There’s certainly the ego-based me that is very competitive,” he says. Pine is playing a long game, honing his craft and his deltoids, doing theater in his spare time, making savvy, diverse film choices – the Sondheim musical, playing an obnoxious boss’s son in Horrible Bosses 2, a character part as a ZZ Top–bearded billionaire in the comedy Stretch. [Continue Reading ...]